The continued migration of families from the West Coast to southern Idaho is a sore subject for most native Gem Staters. The cost of living is hands down the main reason for the exodus that's been going on for the past decade-plus, and one utility bill, in particular, is driving people from the mountains of California to the low desert of Idaho.

Those of us in the West have reason to celebrate right now. We have just entered the non-heating season. This means that while many of us still need propane to do things like cook, dry clothes, operate heavy equipment, and heat water, we can expect much lower monthly bills when it comes to warming our homes for the next few months.

When a person's heating bill is half of their paycheck, it makes it almost impossible to keep one's head above water financially, especially for those renting larger tanks.

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The months of October through March are brutal for most homeowners who depend on fossil fuels for survival. I know people in the mountains of Central California who pay nearly $1,000 a month in the winter for propane. When a person's heating bill is half of their paycheck, it makes it almost impossible to keep one's head above water financially, especially for those renting larger tanks.

The colder winters that have been bearing down on many western states are driving propane prices sky-high, and the outlook for this coming winter doesn't appear to be improving. Demand will once again allow companies to jack prices up as they see fit.

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Gallery Credit: Credit N8

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