Price Protection Programs —what’s it all about

Heating and cooling your property can be one of the most costly expenses of the year. Not only that, but in the Northeast we use up to 80% of our heating fuel in just four months of the year. There’s not much we can do about that but there are ways to adjust how we pay and even what price we pay for fuel.

Right now energy companies are offering price protection programs, prepay programs, budget programs, downside insurance… But what does it all mean and why should you care?

Over the last six months oil prices have fallen to historic lows but what’s going to happen next? There’s a lot of pundits out there who’ll tell you this and explain that, but no one really knows. Sometimes it seems that no one really knows what did happen, never mind what will!

But we do know what’s happening right now and it’s true to say that prices are still relatively low. So it may be that buying right now would be a smart move.

But how should you buy?

This is where you have choices.

Choice one: Prepay or Budget?

If you prepay, you settle on today’s price, and you pay upfront for all your gallons (or as many as you choose to buy).

If you budget, you get the same price (plus a few pennies) but you make several smaller payments spread out over the next few months.

Choice two: Fixed or Flex?

If you choose fixed, whether you prepay or budget, you lock in at today’s price. And that’s it… Regardless of what the prices do next winter—up or down—you pay the locked in price that you got today.

If you choose flex, you pay an additional fee for Downside Insurance—this year 25¢ per gallon purchased—and then, if the price goes down you’ll pay the lower price, but if the price goes up, you pay your locked in price.

And then there’s one final option: If you don’t want to lock in to a price but you want to control your monthly outgoings, you can choose Market Budget. You spread your fuel costs over 12 months, paying the same amount every month—regardless of how much (or how little) you use—and pay the market price on the day of your delivery.

Want to know more about Lamprey’s programs? Click here or call our office at 603.964.6703.

We’re here Monday to Friday 7:30 to 4:00. We’ll be happy to answer your questions, guide you through the details, give you today’s price, and let you know if you’re eligible for any discounts.

Fuel bills can be scary, but with a little pre-planning you can take the edge off.


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