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Old 11-08-2013, 08:34 AM
 
2 posts, read 3,760 times
Reputation: 12

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Hello. We are a family of six moving from Colorado to the Raleigh area (actually closer to Wilson in a small town called Sims). Yes, job is secured, we've been out to look around, etc. etc.

Although...when we came out we missed seeing Sims somehow . We were told to avoid the Wilson area and so, under that advice, spent plenty of time elsewhere (all over the state really) and then my hubby received his favorite offer around Kinston (I realize the commute will be close to an hour). So, we have chosen a house in Sims. I'm looking for thoughts on the area (things to do, things to avoid). Also, I've noticed that a town will have a population listed online, then you get there and it is WAY bigger. Like there is a lot of unincorporated area around the town that flows into being part of the "neighborhood" but isn't necessarily counted toward population. So...to succinctly state my question:

1) Where around Sims to avoid?

2) What to love about the area?

3) Is it really only 282 people "large"?

On to my more stressful question and really, the main reason I'm posting.

How the HECK does this propane thing work Yep. I realize there is a tank, some red tape/paperwork, a price per gallon etc. I know how much it will cost to fill my 500 gallon buried tank to the 80% allowable fill. What I don't know is how long that will last. Yes...I know. It varies widely from home to home, family to family. But I really would like a ballpark if possible. Here are the dynamics of our household if any kind folk out there are willing to throw me a number so I can have *something* to work with.

Again, 500 gal tank. 3000 sq ft well built home with an electric oven/range and 1 gas fireplace that we probably will never use. We are Colorado natives so I doubt that the winter chill there will require us to crank the heat up (I'm actually thinking small space heaters might be a more economical option???). There is my husband, myself, two teenagers, two younger kids. Daily showers/baths for all of us. We can be economical on hot water usage if necessary so I guess I'd say or showers will be conservative but not miserly (if that helps any). Perhaps this ballpark I'm looking for is to elusive of an entity to even aim for, but if anyone has any thoughts at all, I'd appreciate it.

I've made a few phone calls and it looks like it will roughly cost $880 to fill the tank (to the 80%)...how long will that last????

Thanks for your time!
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Old 11-08-2013, 11:53 AM
 
2,465 posts, read 4,085,303 times
Reputation: 2347
We use LP and also have a 500g tank. During the winter months, from November through February usually, we keep the thermostat in the mid 60s....between 65-67*....letting it drop a few degrees at night, etc. Our house is only about 2000 sq ft, and it takes about 3 tanks to get through the winter. Our tank was filled recently, and they put in over 200 gallons. Bill was over $700. You'll pay between $2.20-2.80 a gallon right now. Price will depend on how far you are from the dealer, whether or not you sign a contract and lock in a price, etc. But be wary of allowing them to "auto-fill". They will show up in the spring and fill you up with gas that will sit all summer. I've had to chase away the driver, every spring, even though they have "no spring fill" on our account. I'll NEVER do it again, heat a home with LP gas. And as soon as I can afford to get rid of my current system, I will. I'd prefer electric, it's at least $200 a month cheaper. Our gas bill, averaged out across 4-5 months averages about $400-500 a month, as we'll spend at least $2000 to heat our home over the winter. That's JUST heat, no cooking, water heating ,etc.


If you can afford it, go ahead NOW, and replace the heat system in your home. What you'll spend in gas for 2 winters will cost just as much as replacing it, most likely.


Small electric space heaters are a great way to avoid turning up the thermostat, as long as the electrical in your house can power it. They will easily trip breakers though! And I would never go to bead at night and leave on running unattended. But that's just me.
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Old 11-08-2013, 01:27 PM
 
2 posts, read 3,760 times
Reputation: 12
TheBigKahunaNC

Thank you SOOO much for the insight! I was imagining it would be more expensive than natural gas

I will definitely look into switching immediately! I hadn't thought about making sure the space heaters are off at night? Iis that really a concern, or are you just being cautious?
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Old 11-08-2013, 02:37 PM
 
Location: Durham, NC
2,024 posts, read 5,839,909 times
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Companies like Amerigas and Ferrell are consistently great plays for stock market investors because they serve rural customers with no switching choice and thus no defensive pricing power.

Goodness knows I too would look for alternative options if LP was my only choice!
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Old 11-08-2013, 06:50 PM
 
2,465 posts, read 4,085,303 times
Reputation: 2347
Quote:
Originally Posted by notfromroundhere View Post
TheBigKahunaNC

Thank you SOOO much for the insight! I was imagining it would be more expensive than natural gas

I will definitely look into switching immediately! I hadn't thought about making sure the space heaters are off at night? Iis that really a concern, or are you just being cautious?

Just being cautious. I don't really have a TON of faith in a $30 heater, made in China. And once in bed with blankets, etc...we rarely get cold. I just prefer to be able to keep an eye on the space heaters. They are great, especially in the mornings, getting ready in the bathroom, etc. They will warm a 100sq ft bathroom in a few minutes. I use them in the garage too, or we'll put them beside the couch/chair etc in the evening when just sitting around, watching TV, etc.


I was all set to swap out my LP heat for electric a few years ago and then got laid off at work. Now going back to school amd only working part time, I can't afford to make the switch. Although I could have paid for a new heat system by now, with just my gas bills! We could convert to natural gas for a few hundred dollars, if PNC would run a line down our street. We're literally a few hundred feet from their nearest line. But they want at least 3 houses out of the 8 on our street, to convert. We only have two willing to do it, or who use gas.


Call around and get quotes from every gas company that will deliver to your address. You may find as much as $0.20-.75 a gallon difference.
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Old 11-08-2013, 07:05 PM
 
34 posts, read 83,482 times
Reputation: 27
Who owns the tank? If a gas company owns the tank you are stuck having them do the deed of filling it and proceeding to rake you over the hot coals. Hopefully you own it this way you can shop for fuel with cash (the king) in hand. Good luck. My LP gas bill is. . . I have no idea. All I can tell you is that I am paying $1.99/gallon because I live in a sub with 160 other houses and no hoa. One of my good neighbors stepped up to negotiate with big LP for the price. They also own my tank. LP is the worst method of heating. Heat pumps are the best for this climate. IMHO

Cheers.
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