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Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Oh happy day!

I recently received the gas bill for July and had a little conniption at the amount due. $306.43 is nearly double the usual monthly amount and more than I've ever been charged. Ever.

Zut alors.

So I'm thinking, what the heck have we been doing differently? There are only two adults and one little girl living here. The furnace isn't on. We haven't been taking more hot showers than usual - or have we? We do cold water wash for laundry. We did get a new dishwasher in March, but is it really using that much hot water? Is it the HST? Are we simply using more energy?

I began to panic and wondered how we can continue to afford living in this house if the utility bills are suddenly skyrocketing? Hydro was high thanks to the air conditioner and dehumidifier (it has been a record breaking hot summer after all) and the last water & waste bill was ridiculous. Although I finally figured out the cause of that issue.

So I called my brother-in-law to get some feedback and he suggested that if we cranked the furnace during the winter it could be over usage amounts that are being billed now. We're on an equal billing plan so this is a possible theory. But didn't we have a mild winter?

Just before we decide to try not using the dish washer for a month to see if it will make a difference, I gave Enbridge a call to see if maybe a mistake was made. Like the bean counter added some numbers instead of subtracting. Or something. Anything.

I waited on hold for 15 minutes and finally gushed my problem to the customer service rep.  And this is what happened...

Enbridge: Ma'am, you have a credit of $612.72

Me: What?

Enbridge: We overcharged you the other month. That little CR next to the mount is what we owe you.

Me: Oh! Really?

Enbridge: So you don't pay anything until that little CR is gone.

Me: Oh! Well great! Thanks!

Apparently I didn't have a lot to say, but what else is there when a utility company says they owe you money. It turns out that the little CR has been on my bills for the past few months and I didn't notice so just kept paying the amount due, which was actually the amount due to me which kept increasing with every payment I made.

So no gas payments necessary for the next few months. Woohoo! I fee like I won a small lottery.