U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Hawaii
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 1.5 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
Jump to a detailed profile or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Business Search - 14 Million verified businesses
Search for:  near: 
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 10-02-2010, 09:05 PM
 
49 posts, read 93,921 times
Reputation: 39
Default utility bills in Hawaii: survey (water, natural gas, electric)

Thought I'd survey you guys living in Hawaii if you don't mind! I'm sure I'm not the only mainlander who is wondering this stuff...
(I know there's been a ton of threads on electricity in particular, but I haven't noticed any quite like this one...)

1) What do you pay monthly in total for electricity and natural gas?

Also,
How big is your house? (wondering how large a home you have to cool!)

How old is your home? (here, the older homes are not insulated as well... so they tend to have much higher heating and cooling costs than newer, better insulated homes... does the same apply in Hawaii???)

2) What do you pay monthly in water bills?

Also,
How often do you water your lawn/garden? (wondering if your water bill is mostly just indoor use or not)

How many people live in your home? (just to help people compare their own households to yours... makes it easier to compare "apples to apples")

3) Any other major mitigating factors that affect your bills? ex. if you're mostly off the grid and using solar power, then that would explain why your electric bills are so amazingly low!

Thanks a bunch all!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 10-02-2010, 09:51 PM
 
Location: Moku Nui, Hawaii
5,771 posts, read 9,290,922 times
Reputation: 2890
Well, there's no natural gas in Hawaii, so that's an easy one to figure. A lot of folks use propane powered appliances, I think propane is somewhere between $3.50 and $4 a gallon, although I'm not sure exactly what the price is.

Not very many people air condition their houses, mostly because of the price of electricity. We usually have trade winds which are nice breezes from the ocean which cool off our houses. Not many people heat their houses, either, although I know a few folks who have a woodstove or small space heater. I do have a tendency to bake more things in the winter than in the summer just to run the stove. In the dead of winter, we have an electric blanket on the bed which is our wintertime heating.

For us, we are entirely off the electric grid so we pay zero in electric bills to the electric company. We do, however, buy about one to four gallons of gasoline per month to run the backup generator occasionally. We buy propane for the water heater and stove, we use somewhere around three to four gallons a week but we bake a lot and have a really large tub which gets used a lot.

Our house is going to be 100 years old next year. It is what is called a "single wall" type house. It is made of 1" thick 12" wide boards installed vertically for walls. The inside of the board is the inside wall of the house, the outside of the board is the outside of the house. No insulation although they did put thin wood strips, "battens", over where the boards meet so most of the rain stays outside. You can still see the occasional sunbeam through the walls where there are cracks in the boards, though. That does let a lot of ventilation in so we don't have to cool the house off. It would be nice to have wider eaves to keep the sun off the sides of the house, that would keep it cooler but I planted a grapevine on an arbor near the house so it shades the sides of the house in summer.

Our water bills run about thirty dollars a month. We run a lot of bath water, laundry, the occasional bit of gardening but not a lot of "yard water". Nobody cares if the lawn is perfect. It's out there 24/7 so there's no drive to seek a perfectly groomed lawn like they do on the mainland.

The house is about 850 square feet on about a half acre of land so I suppose we could do a lot more yard work than we do. Mostly we plant things that will give us food that we don't have to fuss over.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-02-2010, 10:56 PM
 
Location: Hilo
97 posts, read 132,925 times
Reputation: 94
There are two of us that live in a 1900sq.ft. home that is 32 years old. We pay about $60 a month for electricity and about $18 a month for water. We power the usual things - washer, refrigerator/freezer, oven, microwave, cooktop, tv, dvd player, router, modem, phone and 2 laptop computers. I work at home so there is at least one computer on 8+ hours a day.

We don't cool or heat the house, mother nature takes care of that. The trades keep it very comfortable during the day and the mauka breezes make for great sleeping weather. Virtually all of our lights are CFL and we are very conscientious about turning off lights. We have solar hot water so our hot water is free. We use the propane side burner on our grill instead of using the electric cooktop whenever possible. We have a dryer but never use it, everything is line dried.

We never water the lawn, again, mother nature takes care of that. We have been dryer than normal for a while now so we have hand watered the garden some.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-02-2010, 11:24 PM
 
Location: Kailua Kona, HI
2,676 posts, read 5,951,635 times
Reputation: 2248
We have an extended family of 7. Electric, about $500/mo. Water about $100 every 2 months. I water certain things in the yard if we have a dry spell like my fruit trees or herbs, orchids or veggies. Our house is about 30 years old, double wall construction but no insulation. No AC or heat altho for some unknown reason the builder put in a fireplace. At 800 ft elevation above Kona, we have no need for heat. I haven't closed a window since we moved here 7 years ago!

We have no solar hence the outrageous electric bill. Various working hours so there is something on a lot here.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-03-2010, 12:44 AM
 
Location: Na'alehu Hawaii/Buena Vista Colorado
2,770 posts, read 4,525,090 times
Reputation: 2033
We are two people in a 1700 square foot house that is five years old. Air conditioning is how wide we open the windows. We have two computers and the usual appliances. Stove and clothes dryer run off of propane. I have been watering the fruit trees fairly heavily due to the drought. Very few people have real "lawns" here; if they do have grass it is the kind that requires low water and is low maintenance.

Electricity runs about $175/month
Water is $22/month
A tank of propane that lasts about six months costs $265
HD cable TV $74/month
Phone $25/month
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-03-2010, 01:09 AM
 
91 posts, read 266,201 times
Reputation: 108
We live in Maui in 3 BR house (not sure of square footage; ?1500-2000 sq ft?).

Electricity is $100-120.

Water is taken care of by landlord.

I really thought electricity was going to be a lot more. So I'm presently surprised :-)

We do have solar water heating...but I'm not sure if it takes care of all the hot water including the washing machine.

People really overblow the expenses of Hawaii. Yes, it's more expensive than bumblef*** America, but very comparable to big cities like NYC, S.F., etc. Plus, I feel that you definitely get more in terms of house compared to those cities.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-03-2010, 02:28 AM
 
239 posts, read 251,679 times
Reputation: 291
We have two houses on our property in Hilo--4 people total. One is a 3 bedroom 1 bath about 950 sf and the other is a 1 bedroom, 1 bath ohana that is 700 sf. We share utilities and they run $30 per month for water, about $85 a month for electricity and we have gas (which is piped in propane from the Gas Company) and it costs $80 per month. Both are single-wall houses (one built in 1936 and the other in 2009) with no heating and no cooling except for a small window air conditioner in the ohana that we run at most a couple times per month. We don't water the yard. It usually rains enough here. There is a dishwasher in the main house that is run about once per week and we share a washing machine and dryer. The dryer is used occasionally since we usually hang our clothes on the clothes line under one of the houses. There is one water heater that is for both houses. The stoves, dryer, and water heater are gas (propane).
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-03-2010, 12:14 PM
 
Location: Big Island
52 posts, read 103,888 times
Reputation: 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by BigIslandBum View Post
There are two of us that live in a 1900sq.ft. home that is 32 years old. We pay about $60 a month for electricity and about $18 a month for water. We power the usual things - washer, refrigerator/freezer, oven, microwave, cooktop, tv, dvd player, router, modem, phone and 2 laptop computers. I work at home so there is at least one computer on 8+ hours a day.

We don't cool or heat the house, mother nature takes care of that. The trades keep it very comfortable during the day and the mauka breezes make for great sleeping weather. Virtually all of our lights are CFL and we are very conscientious about turning off lights. We have solar hot water so our hot water is free. We use the propane side burner on our grill instead of using the electric cooktop whenever possible. We have a dryer but never use it, everything is line dried.

We never water the lawn, again, mother nature takes care of that. We have been dryer than normal for a while now so we have hand watered the garden some.
BIB: We live here too and we pay average $245 mo electric. Same amount of laps router etc,freezer,refrig ,use dryer sparingly,microwave,elect stove,electric water heater(boo),no tv,only ceiling lights used ,4 people,2 dogs ..................... Our water is county per month. We had Helco ck lines box on property and off.Irun around shutting water that is lingering and a light on and no one using it. I am currently home and can be vigil more than most can. I bake our snacks once a week and do alotof on top of stove meal prep................. I am disgusted.................. Any suggestions?!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-03-2010, 12:33 PM
 
Location: Hawaii-Puna District
3,585 posts, read 5,582,592 times
Reputation: 2124
Quote:
Originally Posted by dianer29 View Post
BIB: We live here too and we pay average $245 mo electric. Same amount of laps router etc,freezer,refrig ,use dryer sparingly,microwave,elect stove,electric water heater(boo),no tv,only ceiling lights used ,4 people,2 dogs ..................... Our water is county per month. We had Helco ck lines box on property and off.Irun around shutting water that is lingering and a light on and no one using it. I am currently home and can be vigil more than most can. I bake our snacks once a week and do alotof on top of stove meal prep................. I am disgusted.................. Any suggestions?!
Your electricity amount seems just about average with what you have going. That water heater and electric stove are the killers. We rarely use the stove/oven because we use the grill (which means we spend money on propane for the grill instead). If you are renting, maybe the landlord will be interested in converting to propane for the water heater, dryer and stove?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-03-2010, 10:00 PM
 
49 posts, read 93,921 times
Reputation: 39
What a great read! Thanks so much to everyone for taking the time to reply and include so many details!

Didn't know there was no natural gas in Hawaii! (Mind you, I'm having a sense of deja vu about that... wondering if maybe I'd read that ages ago but forgotten!)
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:


Options
X
Data:
Loading data...
Based on 2000-2011 data
Loading data...

123
Hide US histogram

Over $84,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Hawaii
View detailed profiles of:

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2014, Advameg, Inc.

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25 - Top