Estimating How Much Apartment Utilities Will Cost

Estimating How Much Apartment Utilities Will Cost

Start with $200 per Month

Whether you’re renting or buying a home the cost of utilities is very important to consider.

Experts recommend you set aside $200 each month to cover the bare necessities.

But there are a ton of variables that could make your total monthly utility cost way higher or lower.

Electric alone costs people $1,475 each year on average according to estimates from the U.S. Energy Information Administration and the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Yeah, that’s a lot of money.

If you’re thinking about moving and want to estimate your utility costs, it’s important you consider the many factors that dictate your final costs.

Luckily, we’re going to break it all down in this post.

The bottom line

When looking at potential homes, it’s important to ask, “how much are utilities?” to plan your budget. The answer will depend on multiple factors. For a start, look at national averages to get a baseline idea of how much utilities cost in the U.S.

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Ways to keep your average utility costs low

These days, technology has made it a lot easier an

These days, technology has made it a lot easier and less expensive to purchase gadgets that help you understand how much energy you’re consuming.

You can try searching in your area for energy-efficient apartments, which are equipped with things like ENERGY STAR appliances and improved insulation. This can help keep the heat in during the winter and the hot air out during the summers.

There are also federal ENERGY STAR programs that certify multifamily apartments and condos that are at least 15 percent more energy efficient.

According to ENERGY STAR, you can make these simple swaps and save some money.

  1. Replace your five most frequently used light fixtures to energy-efficient ones. Savings: Around $65 a year.
  2. Turn off lights when leaving a room. Savings: Around $15 a year.
  3. Get a programmable thermostat and set it to a more efficient temperature when you’re sleeping or not home. Savings: Up to $150 a year.

Average Cost of Utilities Worldwide

Utility Costs in the UK

According to Money Advice Service UK data, the UK’s average utility bills are £194.92 a month, or about $260.22. These expenses include the following utility services:

  • Electricity, water, and gas – £90.10
  • Phone – £39.95
  • TV – £36.86
  • Broadband – £28.01

At £90.10 or about $120.56, the average electric bill in the UK is much lower than the one in the US. This figure includes water and gas, too. In the US, the average electricity, gas, and water expenses are at soaring $253.25. In the US, the average broadband bill is $60, which is also higher than the average internet bill in the UK of £28.01 or $37.48.

When it comes to average utilities cost by ZIP code in the UK, let’s see how expensive London is. According to Numbeo, essential utilities in the city cost about $258.23 a month. Internet in London costs an average of $45.02, while one minute of prepaid mobile tariff is $0.18. Living costs in London seem more expensive than the British average. Yet, the destination is still cheaper than most US states.

Utility Costs in Canada

America’s neighbor Canada is also cheaper when it comes to living costs. Canadians pay an average of C$176 (or about $140) on basic utilities and the average internet bill per month in Canada is a little over $42. The average phone bill per month in Canada is $0.28 for 1 minute of a prepaid mobile tariff.

Yet, not all destinations are equally cheap. The average utilities cost per month in Ontario, for instance, is $174.29. Plus, internet in Ontario costs about $63.17 a month on average. Ontario has higher costs than two other top Canadian destinations – Calgary and Toronto. The first city is a growing cosmopolitan area and the center of the country’s oil industry. Yet, the average utilities cost in Calgary is $157.94, while the internet costs $59.70. As for Toronto, its residents pay about $119.03 for essential utilities and $55.52 for bandwidth.

Utility Costs in Australia

Basic utility bills Down Under cost an average of A$290.19 (about $215). The average internet bill in Australia is about $56, while the average phone bill in Australia is $0.30 per one minute.

Residents of Melbourne, for example, pay an average of $158.54 for utilities. The average gas bill in Melbourne is included in this amount, while the internet is an additional $70.94. Naturally, Sydney is more expensive than Melbourne, with its average cost of apartment utilities coming in at $138.90. One minute of prepaid mobile tariff costs $0.63, while the internet is about $54.67.

Utility Costs in Europe

Europeans pay varying utility bills, depending on where they reside. Below, we’ll list the average costs for an 85 square meter apartment’s basic utilities in various destinations.

  • Copenhagen, Denmark – $161.46
  • Berlin, Germany – $265
  • Rome, Italy – $267.70
  • Paris, France – $211.43
  • Madrid, Spain – $160.41
  • Stockholm, Sweden – $96.66

How Much Is The Average Natural Gas Cost In The United States?

Wondering how much you’ll spend on natural gas costs when you move into a new home? Figuring this out can be tricky. That’s because there are so many variables that can impact your natural gas bill.

For example, your gas bill will be higher if your home’s furnace, water heater, oven, stove and dryer are powered by gas. If your home’s appliances are instead powered mostly by electricity, your monthly gas bill will drop.

It also matters where you live. Your area’s climate plays a major role in the size of your monthly gas bills. Heating a home accounts for the greatest consumption of natural gas. If you live in a cold climate where the winter months see frigid temperatures, you’ll probably spend more on natural gas than someone in a milder climate.

Then there’s the size of your home. As you can guess, it takes far more gas to heat a larger home. Consequently, you’ll pay more each month in natural gas if you own a big home.

You can impact how much gas your home consumes each month by boosting the energy efficiency of your home. Adding more insulation to your home’s walls, for instance, will keep the hot air in your residence for a longer amount of time. Multi-pane windows will do the same. Investing in furnaces and water heaters that are more efficient will also help reduce your monthly gas bills.

So, how much can you expect to pay each month in natural gas to heat your home and power your gas-fueled appliances? The American Gas Association most recently said that households in the United States spent an average of $661 a year in natural gas to heat and fuel their homes. That comes out to a bit more than $55 a month.

Total Cost Of Utilities By State

When you add up all the utilities that serve your home (everything from water to electricity, cable and internet), how much can you expect to pay each month?

In 2018, studied every state and determined how much consumers in each paid every month on average for utilities.

Here’s a look at the results:

Alabama: $411.78

Alaska: $527.96

Arizona: $441.41

Arkansas: $388.28

California: $437.85

Colorado: $404.25

Connecticut: $496.07

Delaware: $421.99

Florida: $448.99

Georgia: $455.34

Hawaii: $730.86

Idaho: $343.71

Illinois: $403.63

Indiana: $411.36

Iowa: $436.46

Kansas: $422.06

Kentucky: $413.85

Louisiana: $380.79

Maine: $464.45

Maryland: $429.61

Massachusetts: $469.13

Michigan: $410.72

Minnesota: $404.50

Mississippi: $391.46

Missouri: $436.49

Montana: $359.03

Nebraska: $399.45

Nevada: $376.93

New Hampshire: $477.02

New Jersey: $432.72

New Mexico: $392.12

New York: $477.31

North Carolina: $417.91

North Dakota: $411.95

Ohio: $447.30

Oklahoma: $431.90

Oregon: $381.30

Pennsylvania: $430.80

Rhode Island: $521.98

South Carolina: $473.78

South Dakota: $382.57

Tennessee: $402.35

Texas: $409.78

Utah: $350.17

Vermont: $468.30

Virginia: $430.41

Washington: $369.18

West Virginia: $393.39

Wisconsin: $390.65

Wyoming: $392.91

How Much is the Average Heating Bill?

The cost of heating for an apartment may be billed separately and will vary throughout the year. The biggest factors impacting cost are the size of the apartment, the height of the ceilings, and the type of energy used.

Overall the monthly cost for apartments is an average of $40-$150+

How to save money on utilities

Consider the following ways to save on energy costs:

  • Appliances: About 13% of a home’s energy costs come from appliances. When buying new models, look for the Energy Star label. Energy Star appliances meet or exceed the federal minimum standards for energy efficiency. For example, a new Energy Star-labeled refrigerator uses at least 15% less energy than one without the label and 40% less than models sold in 2001. Energy Star appliances show their annual energy consumption on their packaging, which lets you compare appliance energy costs.
  • Windows: Leaky or old windows can account for 10%-25% of heating costs due to warm air escaping. Consider replacing windows with double-pane windows or installing storm windows in winter.
  • Lighting: Lighting accounts for about 12% of a home’s energy budget, so changing to energy-efficient bulbs and remembering to turn lights off when they’re not in use can save money. Switching to smart bulbs is another option that can save on energy costs. If you leave home and forget to turn lights off, simply use your smartphone to shut down the smart bulbs remotely so they don’t run for the duration of your absence.

Knowing average household utility costs can help you reduce your use of energy and save money. Of course, there are other factors that go into home ownership and maintenance. Learn about the cost of homeowners insurance and how you can reduce your premium with Nationwide discounts on home insurance.

How Much Does Electricity Cost?

According to the Energy Information Administration, the average cost of electricity in the United States is 13.2 cents per kilowatt-hour, and a typical household uses around 908 kWh per month, making the average monthly electric bill around $120.

Just like water costs, electricity costs vary from state to state. Generally, you are paying to build, finance, maintain and operate the plant where you purchase your electricity from. If you pay attention, the cost of fuel in your area will correlate with the cost of your electric bill. In states where fuel prices are high — such as Hawaii and New York — your electric bill will be much higher than in places where fuel prices are lower, like Idaho and North Dakota. Other factors that can determine your electric bill cost include the time of the year, market changes and disruptions in how much fuel is on hand.

A smart thermostat can learn your household patterns and adjust temperatures based on when your home is active or unoccupied. This will help you save on your heating and cooling bills. Keeping your household appliances in top condition is also an important factor in controlling utility costs.

Tips for Saving on Your Water Bill

Water consumption can be easily reduced. First and foremost, check for leaks in your bathroom or kitchen and fix them. Leaky faucets aren’t just noisy and annoying. They’re also a waste of water. To address this, replace your showerhead with one that is efficient and, while you’re at it, try to take shorter showers, as well.

Meanwhile, the washer and dishwasher will often have an efficient or eco cycle, which can reduce the amount of water being used. In this way, lower-maintenance clothes and lightly used dishes can be washed at colder temperatures and shorter cycles.

COST OF LIVING IN TEXAS

The cost of living in Texas can be 8% higher than the U.S. average. According to , Texas is on the rank no. 31 in terms of the average utility bill. The average utility bill per month in the state includes:

  • Electricity – $100.91
  • Natural gas – $110.58
  • Internet – $58.29
  • Cable – $100.00
  • Water – $40.00
  • Total – $409.78

Wondering how much are utilities per month in different Texas cities? Here’s a quick utility cost compilation to help you get a better idea:

Note: The costs can vary based on factors like the size of your apartment, the number of people living, the locality you’re in, and the amount of utility usage.

City/Utilities Average Gas Bil, $ Average Electricity Bill, $ Average Internet Bill. $ Average Water Bill, $ Car Gas, $ Total
Houston $110.58 $155.74 $60.33 $27 $164 $517.65
San Antonio $110.58 $160.26 $65.31 $45.64 $150 $531.79
Dallas $110.58 $128.50 $65.24 $41.23 $1505 $495.55
Austin $110.58 $147.04 $66.59 $70.39 $150 $544.6
Fort Worth $105.26 $122 $60 $40.39 $148 $475.65
El Paso $108.72 $124.36 $60 $42 $150 $485.08

The most expensive city in Texas is Austin. When compared to the national average, the monthly bills here cost 21.7% more. You can expect to shell out about $2300 per month to live comfortably in Austin. The cheapest city in Texas, on the other hand, is Amarillo. It has a cost of living index of just 80.1 as compared to the U.S. average of 100. Whether you’re moving to a large apartment or a small apartment, a more expensive city or a comparatively cheaper one – it’s always best to understand the specific costs of your area. This will help you create and execute your budget smartly.

What Utilities are Included in my Lease?

When on the hunt for apartments, one of the things on your list of questions, should be to ask the property manager for details about the utilities prior to signing on the bottom line.

The last thing you want to do is accidentally get in over your head financially and then have to break the lease, likely incurring even more penalties.

Utility Costs Landlords (might) Cover

Before we can estimate the average cost of your apartments utility bills, we need to first establish which energy bills you’re actually responsible for. Despite what you may have been told verbally if it’s not in writing on a legally binding agreement, it doesn’t count.

Review your Lease or Rental Agreement

Step one is to get out the apartments lease agreement and READ IT CAREFULLY. There should be a section labeled “Utilities” or similar. This section should define what is and is not included in your monthly rent payment.

Most apartments include water and trash in the rent, however, this may not always be the case. Often a tenant will be responsible energy bills like gas, electric, and any other optional utilities.

If something is unclear, or if certain utilities are not listed at all on the apartments lease agreement, always ask to get it in writing as to who is responsible for what energy bill.

Condo Fees: The Cost of Being Part of a Close Community 

Average condo costs: $50 and $1,000 

Are you in the condominium (otherwise known as the condo) market? Then you need to think about condo fees (some call it the “monthly maintenance fees”).  

Once you’ve decided that you want the trappings of covered parking, a communal pool, and a gym, among other shared amenities, it becomes vital to consider what your condo fees will be.

So why do you even need to pay these fees? 

There are actually many reasons.

The common area needs to be maintained; snow shoveled, leaves raked, gardens manicured, and roofing maintained.

Some of the funds you pay can also be invested so that they can be used for more significant projects like repainting the buildings or replacing roofs and paving.

According to the website Condo Capital, condo fees can average between $50 and $1,000 in the United States. 

It’s essential to be clear about what condo fees cover because, in some cases, they can cover utilities like water, trash, and sewer.

You can check the laws regulating condo fees in the Condominium Act in the state where you live.   

Other Utility Bills to Consider

Electricity, gas, water, and internet cover the main essential utilities. However, there are a few other bills you'll want to consider.

Cable

Cable is nearly obsolete as there are more streaming alternatives available than ever before. The number of cord-cutters in the US is expected to grow to 40.1 million this year.

If you can’t live without cable, consider what you’re watching. Lower tier packages might suit your needs just fine and can be as cheap as $20.

Average cable bills are around $50 a month, and adding on the extras can put you in the $70-$80 range. The top-tier packages could put you over $100 a month.

Streaming Services

Let's face it. You've probably ditched cable TV for a variety of services years ago. These services offer a ton of variety and often have full seasons of shows that you may watch on cable. Better yet, all these streaming services have costs under $18 a month. Here's a look at some popular streaming service options:

  • Netflix: $9.99 – $19.99
  • Disney+: $7.99 – $12.99
  • Hulu: $6.99 – $12.99
  • Apple TV+: $4.99 – $19.95
  • HBO Max: $14.99
  • Amazon Prime Video: $9.00
  • Paramount Plus: $4.99 – $9.99
  • Peacock: $4.99 – $9.99
  • Discovery Plus: $4.99 – $6.99

Also, look into bundle packages. Many cable providers offer discounts when you bundle different services including internet and cell phone service. If you’re having a great experience with your provider, then switching all your services to a single provider can help you maximize your savings.

Phone Plan

According to the most recent data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average American spends $94 a month on their cell phone bill. This translates to $1,128 a year, which is around the price of most smartphones these days. Most families don't use landline phones anymore, so we've only included data for cell phone plans.

Generally, cell phone bills include the cost of the rented or leased device, carrier service, taxes, fees, and the cost of any add-ons you may have.

Your phone bill can be pricey, so here are a few of our favorite tips on cutting back that cost.

  • Calculate the costs of leasing or buying your device. Many cell phone service carriers enable you to lease your current cell phone for a fixed monthly rate. You can then opt to buy the phone outright or upgrade to a newer phone. Unless you need the newest phone, purchasing your phone outright may save you money and interest in the long run.
  • Shop around. Many consumers benefit from great savings and decent service by opting out of yearly cell phone service providers. If you prefer the guaranteed speed and reliability of a contract-based plan, shop around to catch a deal.
  • Add service lines. Most cell phone service providers offer deep discounts for those who add more lines to their plan. You can stay on a plan with your family to reduce costs, or you may be able to add roommates/significant others to your plan.
  • Consider your data usage. Look at your data usage trends on your phone or on your profile with your provider. If you’re paying for an unlimited data plan, but only use 2 GB a month, you can save big by switching to a plan with lower data limits.

Trash

For most renters, your trash collection will not be a part of your total apartment utilities bill. The fee is commonly bundled in with the price of rent or the owner may pay the bill out of pocket. If you'll be in charge. of the trash collection bill, here's what you should know.

Trash rates are typically determined by local-level governments or private waste collection companies. As a result, the amount you'll pay for waste collection is essentially a roll of the dice.

For example, Sunnyvale, California residents pay a set garbage collection fee based on their resident type and the size of their cart. A multifamily unit with a large cart must pay a monthly fee set at $115.68. Those in Athens County, Georgia must pay $37.60 a month for a large 64-gallon cart.

How Much Are Internet, Telephone and TV Bills Each Month?

According to a report by doxo, the average household pays around $116 per month for cable and internet bills. Your connection type is the biggest factor in how much you will pay. DSL is the cheapest option at around $50 per month, and a satellite connection is the most expensive. Other factors such as data caps and upload and download speeds can also affect your end cost. Many households opt out of cable services by signing up for streaming services like Hulu and Netflix, which have monthly subscription costs. Some of these plans include local channels, too.

When signing up, it’s a good idea to look for promotions that can lower your costs. Some streaming services offer bundle packages, so if you add options like HBO and Showtime, you save more than if you purchase these plans separately. If you don’t watch movies as often, you can also pay on demand. With this option, you only pay for what you watch instead of paying for a library of movies. Services like Amazon and YouTube offer movies for rent individually.

Most households use cell phone services as their main telephone connection. Regardless of what carrier you use, the average cell phone bill is around $70 a user. You can control your cell phone costs by choosing a no-contract plan or by using a smaller carrier. You may only get a limited service area, but it’s ideal for those who tend to stay close to home.

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