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Portland area Portland, ME metro area
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Old 06-28-2013, 12:23 PM
19 posts, read 55,763 times
Reputation: 43


Hi all, my husband and I just moved here and we're trying to find a moderately priced place to rent for the next 4 years. We would really like to have a garage and/or a yard. I've found a few houses that look nice. One is 1,600 and the other is 1,700 a month. No utilities included. I asked how much I can expect to pay for utilities but I am not sure how honest people are being with me.

I came here knowing about the higher than average utility cost, and right now the landlord is telling me it costs them about 1,200 a year to heat the place, electric is about 100 a month. it's 1,500sq foot. That seems low to me, but perhaps that's because I came in expecting the worst? I'm Alaskan born and raised and lived in Puerto Rico the past 2 years so I'm used to high cost of living. In PR it was not uncommon for an 800$ a month utility bill so that's kind of what I was expecting it to be here.

What do you guys think? I know it depends on the house, insulation, etc. but, am I getting the wool pulled over my eyes or is it really that 'cheap'?
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Old 06-28-2013, 06:22 PM
177 posts, read 369,265 times
Reputation: 339
It depends on how warm you like to keep the place... I would guess about +/- $300/mo to heat if using oil or electric - and it depends on how many months you require heat, as well as insulation and how many hours you keep it running.

But $1200 does seem a bit low since the cold season tends to run long here.
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Old 06-29-2013, 07:11 AM
Location: Gorham, Maine
1,910 posts, read 4,625,612 times
Reputation: 1370
On purchases, sellers are required to disclose the number of gallons or CCFs, etc., rather than a dollar amount as prices tend to fluctuate year to year. I would ask for that figure, although if paid by the tenant, it's likely that the landlord doesn't have it.

You also didn't mention house style (ranch, cape, colonial, etc.), type of fuel (oil, propane, natural gas, wood, pellets, etc.) and the age of the house as these variables will change how much you wind up as spending as will your tolerance for wearing sweaters vs. t shirts during the heating season.
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Old 07-02-2013, 02:57 PM
662 posts, read 942,896 times
Reputation: 722
Can you call the utility company and get a history of usage for that property? It is worth a phone call.
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