Tips for getting good prices for home heating oil include selecting the best payment plan, choosing a local provider and joining oil buying groups. Buying heating oil in bulk also helps to save money.
Locked-in pricing may be capped or fixed. Fixed pricing means that consumers pay a fixed rate throughout the year regardless of the prevailing oil market prices. Capped pricing sets the highest price a consumer can pay for oil, but the price may decrease if market prices go down. Locked-in pricing is a good option because consumers often get lower prices than the market value. This type of payment plan is typically available on a contract basis and a fine imposed on clients who terminate their contracts prematurely.
Local oil dealers also typically provide better prices for their clients. Questions to ask the provider include how long he has been in business, whether the service contract is included in the price and the length of the contract term. A good heating oil provider should have fully insured, licensed and certified technicians.
Lastly, joining local oil buying groups can save significantly on heating oil because such groups are better able to negotiate discounts. Larger oil buying groups may be free to join and may include a free service contract.