Cost of heating your home this winter

If you're thinking about filling your tank for the winter, you may want to do it now.

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Heating oil prices are low right now, and they normally go higher as winter gets closer. Central Oil Owner Marty Topor told 22News, at $1.85 per gallon, this would be a good time to fill your oil tank.

“I think the smart money is to buy it now and to fill your tanks up, the only reason being how much less will it go,” Topor explains.

Experts say the main reason fuel is so cheap is because the giant glut of crude oil has now been turned into a giant glut of refined products.

Economics Professor at Western New England University Karl Petrick told 22News “We’re literally producing it as fast as it can be pushed from the refineries, so as a result prices are going to stay relatively low for a while.”

Petrick told 22News how much you will spend on heating your home varies from person to person. But he predicts it will be comparable to, or lower than last winter.  If you’re worried about the expense of staying warm this winter, there are programs available to help residents buy fuel and save money.

“The fuel assistance program is offered through New England Farm Workers to assist Springfield residents in helping them meet or pay for their fuel bills,” explains Waleska Estrada, Fuel Assistance program manager.   Estrada told 22News they had more than 16 thousand applications for assistance last winter.   How much you save depends on how many people in your household, and annual income.  For a household of 1 individual, the qualifying salary is $34,001.00.

Representatives from the New England Farm Workers Council will be at Mason Square Senior Center on September 21st from 9:00am-12:00pm for application assistance.  You can also apply online. 

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