It is easy to get caught up in the spirit of the holidays.  Some family’s put up the tree, plug in some candles, put them in each window and the decorating is complete.  For others that is just the tip of the iceberg.

Then there’s those that take Christmas decorating to an entirely different level.  The type of decorations that can be seen from hundreds of yards away spark a competitive decoration completion between neighbors that can spread from block to block.

Those major amateur displays can be extremely impressive using thousands of lights outlining homes and hanging from every bush and tree, inflatables, Santa’s on rooftops, and eliminated reindeer all over the yard.  There is a fine line between amazing and tacky, but it is all in the spirit of Christmas.

Then after the calendar has officially flipped to the new year all of that hard work gets dismantled.  Hours go by as the lights are taken down, the inflatables are deflated, Santa comes off the roof and everything is stored away for another 11 months.

Then it’s time to reflect on how amazing your display looked and start critiquing what you will do differently next Christmas to make it even bigger, brighter, and more attention-grabbing.  Then weeks later it arrives…the December electric bill.  Panic sets in wondering how could it be possible that the bill is that high.

A recent blog by the home furnishing company Joybird “The True Cost of Running Holiday Lights” calculated the cost of holiday lights by state based on “typical usage”, “heavy usage”, and “enthusiastic usage.”  They also broke the cost down by LED vs incandescent lighting.  The results are staggering.

Joybird considers “Typical Usage” as using "10 strings of lights, one wreath, one garland, and two outdoor decorations."  In Massachusetts, a state with the highest electric rates in the entire country it would cost you about $5.11 extra in cost for the month with LED lights.  The cost goes up to $34.53 for incandescent lighting according to the Joybird blog.

“Heavy Users” were considered powering "45 light strings for wrapping trees, a 200-foot C9 string in the yard, a 500-foot C9 string on the roof, and one wreath" ran up their Massachusetts electric bill to $49.05 with LED lights and $369.75 using incandescent lighting according to Joybird.

Joybird considers “Enthusiastic Users” as those that are “incorporating enough lights for 55 strings to wrap trees, 95 icicles, five motifs, a 150-foot spool of rope, a 500-foot C9 string in the yard, and an 800-foot C9 string for the roof.”  According to the Joybird report, this type of over-the-top display will cost you $128.72 in Massachusetts with LED lighting and a staggering $996.95 extra on your electric bill in the state if you are using incandescent lighting.

According to the Joybird study, Massachusetts residents pay the highest price than every other state compared to the lowest electric rates in Nevada, Utah, and Washington paying half the cost of residents in Massachusetts.

Click on this link for the complete article “The True Cost of Running Holiday Lights” by Joybird with the complete state-by-state cost breakdown and let's all think about going solar in 2022.

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