Heating Oil Prices Receding Just in Time

A theme of mine is energy innovation and heating oil is a very direct barometer of the situation. City Room blog on NYTimes.com The other day ran a piece that lines up well with my pet project of following heating costs. The piece is called A Happier Ending for One Oil Heat Customer and it talks about the need for heating oil companies to be compassionate to those that locked in heating oil prices when they were at their apex. A company named Petro was called out specifically for its good customer service. Here is an excerpt from Jim DiLeo, president and co-owner, Beato Fuel:

“If you want to keep an account, you need to have good will,” Mr. DiLeo
said. “The only way you keep customers is to remain flexible.”

Competition in the space is improving and one avenue is a website called Heatingoil4less.com. This site aggregates suppliers and their offered prices. Customers can order through the site and pay a type of processing fee ($6.99).
Another website worth noting is one supplied by a reader called http://www.utilitybillassistance.com. It is a type of dashboard site listing ways to save on heating costs this winter.

I started writing about the cost of heating oil over the summer when prices were high. I expected a government intervention in the prices but the sour economy stepped in instead. Here are links to my prior writings and a few others:

Will Heating Bills Kill the US Economic Rally? (9/2/08)
Another Writer Sounding the Heating Oil Alarm (8/16/08)
Update on Heating Oil and China Growth (8/6/08)
The Fuel Cost Balance (8/4/08)
Oil Attention Too (5/27/08)
Oil Attention (5/14/08)


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