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#1 of 15 Old 08-25-2008, 12:09 AM - Thread Starter
 
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So, we may have a contract on our house , I'm wondering how much our bills will change when we move. Can you tell me about what your cost of living is?

For instance, we pay .14 per kWh for electric here. What do you pay? How much is a dozen eggs, loaf of good bread, pound of ground turkey? Auto insurance?

I'm fairly certain that we'll come out way ahead. Our friends moved from Phoenix and their living expenses dropped like a rock.

I'm sure we'll save the $120 water bill and the $30 garbage service. Our cell phone contract is over in October and we're not renewing, that will save us big bucks. I suspect even w/teen drivers our insurance will drop - we live in one of the most expensive (insurance) counties in the nation.

I know a lot of expenses vary depending on family size, home size, type of vehicle, etc., but any help is greatly appreciated.
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#2 of 15 Old 08-25-2008, 12:54 AM
 
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I don't have any really helpful info but I do know that electricity here is among the cheapest in the country. Gasoline is low comparatively, also. (3.29/gal today).
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#3 of 15 Old 08-25-2008, 01:24 AM - Thread Starter
 
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What do you pay per kWh?
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#4 of 15 Old 08-25-2008, 05:13 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Usually Curious View Post
What do you pay per kWh?
If I did my math right, I think it's .084 cents. (I'm not a math person at all... and the bill doesn't say the kwh rate on it in black and white anywhere that I can see.)

As for eggs, I paid just under $2/dozen for non-organic eggs from vegetarian-fed hens (so says the carton). I don't know what plain old white eggs cost.

Really, your food expenses will depend on your consumption of processed foods and how often you eat out, but even with processed foods, you probably will come out ahead in that area.

I don't know about the bread. This evening I paid $1.79/lb for 85/15 ground turkey at Wal-Mart. Regular milk was $3.48/gallon for the store brand.

Also, grocery prices will depend on where you shop.

Your electricity bill will be nicer here than in Phoenix because we have nice mild weather between the cold and hot weather, and hot here is probably nothing like hot in Phoenix. Is your new home all-electric?
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#5 of 15 Old 08-25-2008, 02:31 PM - Thread Starter
 
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If I did my math right, I think it's .084 cents. (I'm not a math person at all... and the bill doesn't say the kwh rate on it in black and white anywhere that I can see.)

As for eggs, I paid just under $2/dozen for non-organic eggs from vegetarian-fed hens (so says the carton). I don't know what plain old white eggs cost.

Really, your food expenses will depend on your consumption of processed foods and how often you eat out, but even with processed foods, you probably will come out ahead in that area.

Yeah, that's kinda why I asked about specific items.

I don't know about the bread. This evening I paid $1.79/lb for 85/15 ground turkey at Wal-Mart. Regular milk was $3.48/gallon for the store brand.

That sounds about like what I would pay here.

Also, grocery prices will depend on where you shop.

Your electricity bill will be nicer here than in Phoenix because we have nice mild weather between the cold and hot weather, and hot here is probably nothing like hot in Phoenix. Is your new home all-electric?

We're in Houston, but it's much more humid/hot here than in MO so it's probably about the same savings. And .08 kWh is a huge savings!

Thanks!
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#6 of 15 Old 08-25-2008, 04:02 PM
 
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Here's info on the electricity rate taken from the provider's website:

Quote:
AmerenUE Residential Electric Rates

Residential customers pay a customer charge of $7.25 per month. This monthly charge reflects the costs of making service available—meter reading, billing, and customer service, for example. It is a fixed monthly charge.

Then there's the energy or usage charge, which goes up or down depending on how much electricity is used. Residential customers pay an energy charge for each kilowatthour used. (A kilowatthour—kWh—is the amount of electricity needed to light ten, 100-watt light bulbs for one hour or 1,000 watts used for one hour).

In winter (October through May) that charge is 5.62 cents per kWh for the first 750 kilowatthours and 3.78 cents per kWh for any usage over 750 kilowatthours.

In summer when the costs of generating and delivering power are higher because of heavy demands on the system, that charge is 7.92 cents per kilowatthour.
I've been getting 1/2 gallon organic milk on sale for about $3.60. You can usually find good bread on sale for $1.89-$2.19 unless you shop the thrift store then it's much cheaper for the same bread that's in the grocery store.

I've recently begun doing the majority of my grocery shopping at a store called Shop N Save. They periodically run sales on Thursdays where it's $10 off a purchase of $50 or more. I usually make several trips through the store during these sales so I can stock up. It has really helped with the cost of groceries for my family.

Overall, Missouri seems to be relatively cheap.
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#7 of 15 Old 08-25-2008, 04:15 PM
 
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One thing to know about MO though is I think they tax the crud out of you. NOt only do you have to pay property tax on your home but on 12/31 of every year you have to pay personal property tax on all your vehicles. It's based on the current value of your vehicle. And it hits at a horrible time of the year so you might want to remember to save for that. You get an exemption for the first year you live there but then you have pay.
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#8 of 15 Old 08-26-2008, 12:54 AM
 
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Where in MO are you thinking about moving? That will make a difference too.
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#9 of 15 Old 08-26-2008, 01:03 AM
 
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Thanks! I am learning some things here, and I actually am from St. Louis. Car insurance can be insane if you live in some areas of the city. I actually paid over $300 a month for car insurance when I lived about a block from the Botanical Gardens. Granted I didn't get my license until I was 25 and I think my husband had received some sort of speeding ticket. But I've known people who lived in the suburbs ONLY because of auto insurance rates. I usually pay about $3.99 for a pound of ground turkey, but maybe that's from Whole Foods. My Omega 3 eggs are usually between $2.30 and $2.70. Half gallon of organic milk is about $3.50. I buy the Healthy Life 40 calorie bread and I think it's a little over $2 a loaf. I didn't realize that our electricity was so cheap, either, though I do notice that the air conditioning in the summer is not nearly as expensive as heat in the winter. Is our gas especially expensive? I have paid nearly $300 per month in the coldest months heating my very small home.
Although our costs of living are generally lower, we probably spend more money on gas here than in some other places due to sprawl. Also, I noticed that when I lived in Seattle, there were so many more good cheap restaurants. I think it's like that in a lot of other bigger cities.

Mandy, mother to Alexandra (10/14/05) and William (12/21/07)
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#10 of 15 Old 08-27-2008, 02:15 AM - Thread Starter
 
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NE of Springfield.

From my guesstimates, we'll save about $650 on utilities. We get hosed on electric, especially in the summer. Our rate is $0.14 kWh, at least twice what y'all pay. Plus, we have water/sewer and there we'll have a well.

Woohoo, can't wait!
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#11 of 15 Old 08-27-2008, 04:53 AM
 
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Originally Posted by mandymichel View Post
Is our gas especially expensive? I have paid nearly $300 per month in the coldest months heating my very small home.
When I lived in the city a few years ago, we had about an $80 electric bill and a similar natural gas bill, both on budget billing. The apartment was small and could have done with some new windows, and did not have central a/c, just a window unit.

We moved away from the city to a suburb, to an apartment twice the size of our old one in the city. This apartment is all-electric and our bill is about $90, even with a third adult living with us. So we essentially lost a bill despite the fact that we gained square footage. (Of course, if you had to commute, you would eat the difference in gasoline for your vehicle. Fortunately, this is not the situation for us.)

I am not an expert, but I don't think electricity fluctuates in price as much as natural gas, propane, and heating oil do. I would rather live in an all-electric dwelling.

Well, ideally, a fancy all-solar dwelling would be even better.

Anyway, all that to say, I think all gas is expensive, not just ours.
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#12 of 15 Old 08-27-2008, 09:48 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Usually Curious View Post
NE of Springfield.

From my guesstimates, we'll save about $650 on utilities. We get hosed on electric, especially in the summer. Our rate is $0.14 kWh, at least twice what y'all pay. Plus, we have water/sewer and there we'll have a well.

Woohoo, can't wait!
I don't know a lot about it, but my parents had a well/septic for a long time and if you are going to be on a septic system, there are some expenses to factor in like periodic pumping and treatments.
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#13 of 15 Old 08-27-2008, 09:52 AM
 
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Is our gas especially expensive? I have paid nearly $300 per month in the coldest months heating my very small home.
Wow, that does seem high...I have a fairly large home (2500 sq feet including the finished basement) and I have never paid more than about $180 in a month, and usually much less even in the winter.
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#14 of 15 Old 08-27-2008, 10:37 PM
 
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I can't quote specific prices, but I thought I'd chime in anyway. We moved here from Austin, so near you, and were shocked by how cheap everything seemed. Groceries, gas, electricity, and, of course, housing. We live in the city, and our car insurance is not that expensive, though we only have liability on one of our cars.

Then again, when I lived in Austin I shopped at Fiesta (you have those too) and nothing here beats Fiesta prices!
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#15 of 15 Old 09-11-2008, 12:53 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I can't quote specific prices, but I thought I'd chime in anyway. We moved here from Austin, so near you, and were shocked by how cheap everything seemed. Groceries, gas, electricity, and, of course, housing. We live in the city, and our car insurance is not that expensive, though we only have liability on one of our cars.

Then again, when I lived in Austin I shopped at Fiesta (you have those too) and nothing here beats Fiesta prices!
Thanks!

Yeah, I'm thinking it's pretty similar.

As far as taxes ... when you have a lot of kids and don't make much money you really don't pay a lot in State income taxes. We only drive paid for 'whoopdies' so we shouldn't owe much there either. Besides, in Texas we have to pay 'registration' which is probably similar.

We have a solid contract and plan to close at the end of October, Lord willing. Woohoo!
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