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How to save money heating your home as rate hikes loom

Ameren is asking the state commission for price increases on gas and electric services

ST. LOUIS — Colder weather is in the forecast just days after Spire announced its raising rates on average by $14.

Now Ameren Missouri customers could be in for a double whammy. The utility is asking state regulators this week to raise electric rates by $12 and natural gas services by $4.

Gentry Trotter is the Founder of Heat Up St. Louis and Heat Up Missouri, his organization helps people keep the heat on. He's an expert on cost-saving tips. 

"While there is going to be a rate hike and who knows of what sort we all have to work together to mitigate any increases along the way," he said.

Trotter said every little bit helps and the key is making sure your home is winter-ready. 

"Seriously, keep the air from flowing out of your house keep it in your house," he said.

Spire and Ameren have tips published on their sites. Here are some highlights:

  • Open your south-facing blinds and curtains to maximize heat
  • Close your fireplace damper when not in use
  • Boil water by covering your pot
  • Use LED holiday lights
  • Lower the temperature on your water heater
  • Install advanced power strips

"It's just like a car, if it's not fine-tuned, you are wasting a lot of energy," Trotter said. "While there is going to be a rate hike and who knows of what sort, we all have to work together to mitigate any increases along the way."

If the rate hikes are approved, they could go into effect in early 2022. The Missouri Public Service Commission will wrap up its hearings on Ameren's request through the end of the week.

Click here to submit a comment to the Missouri Public Service Commission on the potential rate hike.

Editor's note: A previous version of the subheadline stated Ameren was lobbying the state legislature for a price increase. These changes are handled by the Missouri Public Service Commission, not the state legislature.

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