electricity costs  

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helen352
(@helen352)
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January 18, 2014 4:42 pm  

i can someone give me a guess on the monthly electric bill for a 1 bedroom 1 bath house on any of the islands.i hearing that it is outrages


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CruzanIron
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January 18, 2014 4:55 pm  

With or without air conditioning?

With an electric stove or a gas stove?


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AandA2VI
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January 18, 2014 4:56 pm  

Thats a pretty impossible question... it depends on YOUR personal habits and usage. We're now the second highest in the world I believe. I would guess $200 mo. if you have gas stove - elect. washer dryer, fridge and "normal" usage with NO ac.

*** The views and opinions expressed in my posts are soley those of A&A2VI and other like minded islanders. These views and opinions do not necessarily represent those of the majority or any/all contributors to this site. Have a GREAT DAY!


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helen352
(@helen352)
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January 18, 2014 5:39 pm  

hopefully gas stove, heck even a BBQ will do ! no a/c basic washer,fridge.I'm a single person so it will be very low usage. i live in Florida now and sometimes i don't turn on the a/c because I'm outside in the water most of the time. thxs for your quick response.


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CruzanIron
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January 18, 2014 6:06 pm  

water pump (3/4 HP), water heater (unless you go solar or no hot water), refrigerator, washing machine, solar drier, gas stove would be around $200 per month. Add $50.00 for electric stove. This is based on the last 3 electric bills that I reviewed for 2 people 1 bedroom.


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Alana33
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January 18, 2014 6:14 pm  

My tenants have gas stove, w/d, refrig., hot water heater and their bills have gone up from about $120 to over $260 in the last 2 yrs.
There is no A/C as home high up at 900 ft. altitude has a great north and east facing breezy location, chilly at night in winter months
and still has a good breeze in summer but more use of ceiling fans. It really does depend on individual usage.
Don't know what your rates are where you live in FL but ours is likely 4 times higher. (0.54 -0.58 cents per KWH)

People that run A/C in summer months (for just sleeping at night) can have horrendously high bills.
My neighbors have a short term vacation rental with A/C and have had bills well over $1500.00.
It's a smaller vacation rental but vacationers don't ever seem to turn off the A/C.

Plus there's the never ending rate increases allowed by PSC to WAPA.
Budget for the higher end of spectrum and be pleasantly surprised if/when you come in under that budget.
Usage is generally higher in hotter summer months.

Some rentals have cisterns and don't charge for water consumption unless they must purchase. Then they divide amount between tenants/units. Some places do charge for water usage, especially condos but also private residences that have more than 1 or 2 apts.
on premises and are separately metered. Be aware that not all locations will give you access to high speed internet and good cell phone signals so check and take it into consideration when choosing a place to live prior to committing to a yrs. lease.


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speee1dy
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January 18, 2014 8:08 pm  

We pay 200.00. We do not have air , clothes dryer or dish washer. We havr a three bedroom. Ceiling fans in three rooms. TV. Computer and electric stove


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Alana33
(@Alana33)
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January 18, 2014 8:29 pm  

Don't forget the hot water heater! It runs 24/7 unless you have a timer which I have found to reduce bills significantly.
If you are a renter, it may pay for you to install one yourself or ask your landlord about it.


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InnAtPelicanHeights
(@InnAtPelicanHeights)
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January 18, 2014 10:28 pm  

Look at your existing bill................how many KWH are you using,,,,,,KW times .55 will give you an idea this will give you an idea of how much you use.

I have 4 bedroom...gas stove.....gas dryer..............ceiling fans in bedroom, and we pay an average of $125(also shut out hot water tank after using, I have a switch in closet to shut off, and only turn AC on 1 a month for 5 minutes to run and clear any built up moisture in the AC.


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gonetropo
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January 18, 2014 11:34 pm  

Before we installed solar 2 years ago we had 2 hot heaters that we never turned off(one 30 gallon and one 10 gallon), refrigerator with bottom freezer(23 cu ft.), separate chest freezer, pool pump running 4 hours per day on low speed and an electric dryer, that we only use for 5 minutes to finish up the line dried clothes. We also have the flat screen on for 4 hours per day, stereo and the cistern pump. We have 5.5 tons of A/C but only run it when WAPA is out and the generator is on which is nearly weekly!

We seldom went over $200 and usually the bill was around $165. Now with 10 solar panels, net metering, they have been running between $8 and $20, depending on the time of the year.


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speee1dy
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January 19, 2014 11:30 am  

what was the cost of the solar pannels


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gonetropo
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January 20, 2014 11:16 am  

what was the cost of the solar panels

$12,000 installed with a $3600 tax credit. To date, we have generated 5942 KWH of electricity. I you take .53 per KWH that WAPA charges, that works out to about $3200.

So, since June, 2012 we have mitigated $6800 of the installation cost of the system which consists of 10-240v panels and 10 Enphase Microinvertors plus the Enphase Web Monitoring system.

I would not even think about doing this anywhere else but at .53 + per KWH, it makes sense.


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speee1dy
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January 20, 2014 12:07 pm  

for here it definitely makes sense. you should have that made up in no time


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Future Islander
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January 20, 2014 12:43 pm  

Helen:

We have a 850 Sq. Ft. Condo (1 Bedroom/1 Bath) on the East End of St. Thomas.

We rarely use A/C (in the Winter months), electric cook top, convection microwave, refrigerator, TV, electric hot water, ceiling fans, & lighting.

We do not have a dishwasher or washer/dryer in the condo.

Monthly electric bill....about $100.

Summer with A/C......$400 - $500.

F.I.


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Bruno
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January 20, 2014 1:03 pm  

As WAPA goes up in price, solar has been going down. I install this size system for $9-10,000 turnkey. That includes all permits and paperwork. I have doing this for 31 years now, 8 on STX.


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gonetropo
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January 20, 2014 1:58 pm  

As WAPA goes up in price, solar has been going down. I install this size system for $9-10,000 turnkey. That includes all permits and paperwork. I have doing this for 31 years now, 8 on STX.

Bruno, you should be swamped with customers! This is one of the few places in the world where solar actually makes good financial sense.
If the cost of a KWH was .08 like in most of the U.S., it would be a total waste of money to install solar.


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divinggirl
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January 20, 2014 4:50 pm  

Most people I know can not afford to pay that kind of money to install solar. I know I can't.


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gonetropo
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January 20, 2014 5:25 pm  

Most people I know can not afford to pay that kind of money to install solar. I know I can't.

divinggirl, Understand but I believe that are financing arrangements available that would provide you payments that are very close to your present WAPA bill. Maybe Bruno can elaborate on this?

So, you pay for your solar installation which will pay for itself in a few short years or pay WAPA forever. Your choice!
If you can get a system installed for $9000, the true cost would be $6300 after the U.S. tax credit which is what you would have to finance.
Interest rates are very low now so financing the installation may be advisable.

On these islands, you can't afford NOT to have solar with the electricity costs here!


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Bruno
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January 20, 2014 6:37 pm  

Let me tell you, I have had some of my clients get a line of credit from their credit card company for under 5%. The payback on most systems after the 30% fed tax credit is about 3.5 years or less. In the USVI it's a no brainer. Sad to say, so many " solar companies " are selling/ installing solar, and have really no idea what they are doing. Ask for many references from one or two years ago systems that were installed till last month. See if the client was happy with the way the system was installed. How does the system perform? As stated when it was sold? How about after a year or two? Ask about if the roof leaks. I put a five year warranty that it won't leak from my installed system. Go look at an installed system and see if the job looks good. See if it has the " WAPA Net Metering" sticker on the meter base. This shows it has passed inspection. Make sure all components are marine rated. This is a starting point to finding a good installer.


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Alana33
(@Alana33)
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January 20, 2014 7:30 pm  

What about insurance for the solar systems?
Does the company insure that sells or do you add to your windstorm insurance existing astronomical premiums?
Are there any lease to own companies until full amount of installation, panels, etc. are paid off?
How do you go about re-coating and cleaning your roof as we must do every 5 yrs. once panels are installed?
I guess if your roof blows off during a bad hurricane it's a moot point on whether your panels survive.


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SkysTheLimit
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January 20, 2014 8:12 pm  

What about insurance for the solar systems?
Does the company insure that sells or do you add to your windstorm insurance existing astronomical premiums?
Are there any lease to own companies until full amount of installation, panels, etc. are paid off?
How do you go about re-coating and cleaning your roof as we must do every 5 yrs. once panels are installed?
I guess if your roof blows off during a bad hurricane it's a moot point on whether your panels survive.

I was told once they are bolted to the house, they are part of the house, and insured by your existing policy as long as the policy doesn't exclude them. However your deductible might be so high that it makes sense to add a rider policy specific to the system...

Since the system should pay off in 3 yrs or less,....If you lose a system after 5 yrs you still make out. And by then, they should be even cheaper and more efficient.

Alan
St. Croix resident since 2000


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Alana33
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January 20, 2014 9:43 pm  

Yeah but how do you keep the roof clean, recoat under the panels and what's the maintenance on keeping the panels themselves clean with all the dust, Sahara dust, etc.,, we have on our islands?

Are there any lease to own companies until full amount of installation, panels, etc. are paid off?
How do you go about re-coating and cleaning your roof as we must do every 5 yrs. once panels are installed?
I guess if your roof blows off during a bad hurricane it's a moot point on whether your panels survive.

Does the company insure that sells or do you add to your windstorm insurance existing astronomical premiums?
The reason I ask is that it really is still their property until eveything is paid off or do you go into debt paying them off?


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JulieKay
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January 20, 2014 10:06 pm  

Yeah but how do you keep the roof clean, recoat under the panels and what's the maintenance on keeping the panels themselves clean with all the dust, Sahara dust, etc.,, we have on our islands?

Are there any lease to own companies until full amount of installation, panels, etc. are paid off?
How do you go about re-coating and cleaning your roof as we must do every 5 yrs. once panels are installed?
I guess if your roof blows off during a bad hurricane it's a moot point on whether your panels survive.

Does the company insure that sells or do you add to your windstorm insurance existing astronomical premiums?
The reason I ask is that it really is still their property until eveything is paid off or do you go into debt paying them off?

These questions are why we didn't install solar. Our roof is older, but has years left in it, and we didn't want to pay to replace the whole roof prior to installing solar panels just to support them. We were told that once the panels are installed they can't be removed without ruining them. We asked about installing an array on the ground, i.e. building a support structure for the panels instead of putting them on the roof, and were told that good chance the panels would be stolen or broken if they weren't on the roof. And like Alana points out, there's no way to re-coat the roof periodically without removing them. How do people work around this?

"This is your world. Shape it or someone else will." ~Gary Lew


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Bruno
(@Bruno)
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January 20, 2014 10:37 pm  

I recommend that if your roof needs recoated, to do that first. Other times coat under where the panels will be. Remember that the uv will not be breaking down the coating under the panels. If the panels need removed, they can be removed without damage. They will need rebounded with the ground when reinstalled. No big deal. Dealers that will except payments over time are making a large piece of change. It's cheaper to pay the banks 8% locally. Or refinance with cash out. Or as I stated before check on a line of credit.


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gonetropo
(@gonetropo)
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January 21, 2014 8:33 am  

What a lot of poor excuses for NOT installing solar!

I have removed the 10 panels in about 30 minutes. So, if there were to be a significant storm, it is easily done if you are concerned about it. They are bolted into the 3x8 rafters with 6" stainless steel bolts so I feel that in most cases, they are fairly secure.

Prior to installing the racking and panels, I recoated the roof surface with a silicone elastomeric instead of the cheap stuff that is normally used.. It is 3 times the price and a significantly better product than the normal elastomeric coatings. Since the panels have been installed (nearly 2 years), I have never touched them but when I do powerwash the roof, I will powerwash the panels.

Bruno is absolutely correct. This is really a no brainer in the VI. I am not an advocate of solar power but here it is essential, IMO.

PS, I have no allegiance nor have I had any business dealings with Bruno.


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