Home heating prices expected to increase significantly

Shortages in production and increased usage have driven prices for natural gas to seven-year highs and experts say prices could go higher as the temperature drops across the U.S.
Published: Oct. 4, 2021 at 10:30 PM CDT
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BRYAN, Texas (KBTX) - Energy experts say they expect to see a rise in the cost of heating your home this fall and winter. According to the National Energy Assistance Directors Association, that increase could be as much as 30% more for homeowners using natural gas to heat their homes.

The chart below shows the pricing trend for U.S. natural gas since 2020. according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration based on data from Natural Gas intelligence.

Mark Wolfe, the executive director of the National Energy Assistance Directors Association, says prices have been low in recent years, especially with the pandemic. Now, he explained, with everything going back to normal, those prices are going back up.

Experts say it’s due to two major factors: increased demand (as Wolfe explained) and decreased drilling during the pandemic.

What that means for Brazos Valley homeowners

According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, roughly half of Texas homes use natural gas to heat their homes and the average Texas home uses about 41 percent of its total energy used for heat.

The three pie charts break down how homes use energy. (From L to R: average U.S. home, average...
The three pie charts break down how homes use energy. (From L to R: average U.S. home, average west south central home, and average Texas home)(U.S. Energy Information Administration)

U.S. Energy Information Administration suggests the yearly energy bill for the average Texas home is about $1,800.

So all of that information put together comes out looking something like this for homeowners using natural gas to heat their homes:

((Average Texan homeowner yearly energy bill)*(estimated portion of that used for heat)*(30 percent expected increase)) - (current cost of your energy bill) = (expected change in price)

(($1,800)*(.40)*(1.3))-($720) = $216

Rough estimate of expected home heating price increase using data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration and the National Energy Assistance Directors Association
Using information from the U.S. Energy Information Administration and the National Energy...
Using information from the U.S. Energy Information Administration and the National Energy Assistance Directors Association, the average increase in cost to heat a Texas home is estimated at more than $200.(KBTX)

Under current circumstances and using information from the U.S. Energy Information Administration and the National Energy Assistance Directors Association, the average Texas homeowner can expect their heating bill to increase by roughly $200 compared to 2020.

Energy experts at Texas A&M agree. Eric Lewis, an energy economics expert with the Texas A&M Bush School of Government and Public Service, says he believes “individual home energy bills may get close to doubling” as the price for natural gas continues to rise. However, he adds that as the price for natural gas continues to rise, more Texans will be less inclined to turn up the heat which could control the recent spike in price of natural gas.

Watch the video in the player above for a complete breakdown.

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