If your utility bills have increased, how are you coping with increased expenses? (Q47, Cumulative)

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May 3, 2021 - 2:08pm

Critical Commentary

The chart reflects responses to Question #47 from the Spring 2020 and Winter 2020 surveys, which asked “If your utility bills have increased, how are you coping with increased expenses?” This was an open-ended question and there were 120 cumulative responses. Responses to this question were thematically coded, with all responses fitting into one of the following themes:

 

  • Just paying for them

  • Utility bills haven’t increased or N/A

  • Adapting lifestyle to pay for increased expenses

  • Insignificant change in expenses

  • Hasn’t received a bill/unknown if they’ve increased

  • External support

  • Other bills have decreased which has balanced out increased utility expenses.

  • Paying what they can afford (not paying the bill in its entirety)

  • Paying some utilities while not paying others

  • Through energy assistance

  • Other

 

The most common themes were “Just paying for them”, with 35 responses falling into this category, and “Adapting lifestyle to pay for increased expenses”, with 25 responses falling into this category. Twenty-two responses were categorized as “utility bills haven’t increased or N/A”, 12 responses were categorized as “Paying what they can afford”, eight responses were categorized as “Through energy assistance”, and six responses were categorized as “Paying certain utilities while not paying others”. Five responses fall into the “external support” category, five responses fall into the “insignificant change in expenses” category, three responses fall into the “hasn’t received a bill/unknown if they’ve increased” category, and two responses fall into the “other bills have decreased which has balanced out increased utility expenses” category.  Six responses were categorized as “other”, with individuals stating that they are not paying their increased utility bills, or are struggling to pay for them. It’s important to note that some responses contained multiple themes.  

 

The data was produced by the Shifting Energy Demands in COVID-19 Survey, which has been administered to 169 people over two time periods. The Spring 2020 survey was administered to 86 people between May and June, and the Winter 2020 survey was administered to 83 people between December 2020 and March 2021. Visit the Shifting Energy Demands in COVID-19 - Spring + Winter 2020 Survey Results page to view more data from our survey. The project is approved by Drexel’s IRB.

 

Cite as

Morgan Sarao, " If your utility bills have increased, how are you coping with increased expenses? (Q47, Cumulative)", contributed by Morgan Sarao and Alison Kenner, The Energy Rights Project, Platform for Experimental Collaborative Ethnography, last modified 3 May 2021, accessed 21 June 2024. https://energyrights.info/content/if-your-utility-bills-have-increased-how-are-you-coping-increased-expenses-q47-cumulative