Over twenty years ago, I gave up on my endless battle with winter and made the move down south permanently. I loathe the snow and the ice and I can’t stand the cold, so why put up with it if you don’t have to? Moving to the south was not cheap, but living there is way less money than living up north by far! For one thing, kiss all of the winter gear goodbye. No more snow shovels, parkas, or winter boots–all of which cost a great deal of money if you want them to actually keep you dry and warm. Food is cheaper here because it doesn’t have to be trucked up north in the dead of winter when nothing grows. And best of all, I’m not paying for oil or any other type of fuel to keep my house warm. Instead, I’m just paying to keep the condo cool with the central air conditioning. This isn’t a problem at all for me, because the AC is way easier to budget than heating. Oil constantly fluctuates, so there really is now way to budget it out in your estimates for the year. The cost can go up or down depending on a natural disaster or just the way the market is going that day. With electricity, the price per kilowatt remains constant, so it’s a lot easier to track and prepare for. Sure, running AC year round is not the cheapest thing in the world, but thats why I get HVAC maintenance for my whole system four times a year. My heating and AC contractor comes by to check that every inch of the HVAC equipment is in great shape. Then twice a year, they also come out to do the HVAC ductwork. This way, I know my central AC is running at its best, which saves me utility costs.