Post # 1
Question for those who moved from apartment/small condo to a home: what % did your utilities increase or decrease by? I know it is very subjective ( such as sq ft, insulation, what is included in apt living vs owning a home). Just looking for a rough guess-timate!
For example: we live in a 1100 sq ft apartment with very poor insulation. We do not have gas, so we only receive our electric bill, water and trash is taken care of through our complex. We are looking at homes closer to 2k-2500 sq ft and I am looking at the additional cost of utilities that people who transitioned found. Any input is appreciated!
Post # 3
My utilities doubled and it SUCKS. Mainly I believe it’s because we went from a very new apartment to an old house from the 1940’s which has very very poor insulation. I think that’s the mai reason why it doubled rathen than the square footage increasing, so I might be a good person to ask.
But it really..really…sucks. (I woke up this morning and although our heat is set to 73, my feet were blue under my comforter and THREE blankets).
Post # 4
Mine went from less than $50 a month to about $200. So about 4 times as much! ETA that’s just electricity. No gas.
Post # 5
I moved from an apartment to a small house and my electric bill has gone down by maybe 40 dollars a month, but I never had to pay for water/sewer/trash or natural gas. they just about even out, to the same amount as before.
Post # 6
There are so many factors here. We went from a 700-800 sq ft apartment to a 3,300something sq foot house. On paper you’d expect 3X increase of utilities, right?
Our apartment was poorly insulated and sun facing. In the summer we had to crank the AC. Our water bill was determined by adding up all usage in our building and dividing by the number of units occupied.
Our house was built in 2006 with top notch energy efficiency. We have a dual hvac system, all energy star appliances, and our utilities have gone up, but not a ton. In the apartment we always kept the AC/heat set to 71/72 because it was uncomfortable otherwise. In our house we keep it at 68/69.
Post # 7
We moved from an apartment above an office to a small house, and the increase was pretty minimal. Maybe 1%-10% but my FI takes care paying of the utilities (we split payment responsibilities), and I give him a steady amount to help out. Our apartment wasn’t insulated very well, and we had very few options to change so that we could save better. Our house has a basement, but we insulated the windows down there and added a dehumidifier to help out, and overall the heating costs less. We also have more windows here than at the apartment, so during the summer we can open them up and save on air conditioning.
Post # 8
@MrsBroccoli: so would you highly recommend the energy star appliances? I’m wondering how much improvements such as those will save in the long run?
@KateByDesign: I have lived in several apartments, and I think our current one has the worst insulation ever. Also, the appliances are pretty standard ( nothing energy efficient), the doors/ windows are drafty and the walls are pretty thin. Sucks because, on the outside they are really nice apartments, but once settled we quickly realized there are some serious flaws.
Post # 9
Ours went down because we moved from a historical 100 yr old apartment building to a brand new very green/energy efficient townhouse. Utilities decreased by about 20%. We don’t have a yard though, so there is no uptick in water etc for yard work.
Post # 10
Post # 11
Ugh. You would think going from an apartment in a 100 year old building to a less than 10 year old house would mean a decrease in utilities. Nope.
Things like telephone, internet and tv (which generally aren’t utilities but we include them in our monthly utility budget) stayed the same. The biggest increase was gas and electricity.
Electricity increased more than 3 fold because the back of our house (where the kitchen and family room are) faces west and in the summer it takes so much AC to cool it. We have a vaulted ceiling in several rooms so it obviously takes a lot of gas to heat it. When friends come over they always complain how cold we keep our house.
We didn’t realize how cheap it was to live in our dark, dingy apartment.
Post # 12
I’d say you should plan on them at least doubling, and you might be pleasantly surprised if it works out to be different. Apartments (if in buildings) have the benefit of being surrounded by other units, while a stand alone house is completely exposed to the elements. Depends on many factors, but trees/shrubbery will help keep it cooler in the nicer weather and they can also block heavy winds in cooler weather. The way a home is situated on a lot will also make a ton of difference in heating and cooling costs. Add in all the other things you’ve mentioned, and I can’t even imagine they could be cheaper. More square footage, more appliances, more bathrooms, more lights…pretty much more of everything.
Post # 13
Our situation is unique. We were in a 900 sq/ft apartment prior to the house and all we had to pay was electric. Now we live in a 1560 sq/ft townhouse and our electric+gas for the house is actually the same price and sometimes cheaper than the apartment. We’re really not sure why this is. Our HOA takes care of our water and trash so while we now have to pay an HOA fee, we don’t have to worry about those utilities, like at the apartment. We were worried about the cost of everything skyrocketing, especially when I heard a nightmare story from a coworker that her 68 degrees in the winter, 1200 sq/ft home cost her $500/month to heat and light. We keep our thermostat at 73, sometimes 74, and our bill is still anywhere between $100-$150 a month.We’re not sure why we didn’t get the hit. And we have giant bay windows on 2 floors of the house on both sides (we’re talking floor-to-ceiling 8-15 ft) . We have some energy efficient stuff but our theory is that perhaps being a center unit saved us the cost an 4-sides-exposed single family home would have had.
Post # 14
- Wedding: January 2013 - Harbourfront Grand Hall
Mines a total guess, plus our apartment was teensy and heated by electric, home is basement + 1.5 stories (cape cod style) and heated by gas!
Post # 15
Our utilities increased only slightly, but our home is far more efficient than our apt. Here’s the breakdown
Apt: 1100 sq ft, 2nd floor, electric heating/cooling
House: 1900 sq ft, 2 story, gas heat, electric cooling
We have only been in our house for 6 months though, so we don’t actually have averages for the entire year. i also went from an electric stove to a gas stove, which is well worth the extra gas bill to me.
Post # 16
well the last place i lived had literally no insulation in the ceiling so….. lol.
But I live in a 2500sq foot single family home in Ohio (so cold, but not like north dakota cold). The house is new and has all energy efficient stuff. We pay about 50/mo in water (except for summer when we are watering the lawn), 70-90/mo in electric, and 10-150/mo for gas depending on the month.