The holiday season has ended and kids are back to school. While they were at home playing with their new video games and streaming the same YouTube videos over and over, they were driving your energy usage up and you should be prepared for what that will mean for your monthly bill.

Changes in the number of people at home or an increase in the hours you spend at home has a big impact on how you use energy. Whether it’s more time watching television, having more lights on or keeping the house warmer during the day, increasing the amount of electricity or natural gas you use over the holidays means your bill will go up.

Winter weather can impact bills as well, as the amount of energy required to maintain the temperature in your home increases as the outside temperature falls. While this winter hasn’t been bitterly cold so far, Michigan weather can turn on a dime so you need to be prepared for a cold snap.

The good news is, some relief is coming to bills. Starting this month, both natural gas and electric customers will begin seeing additional refunding of federal tax savings from 2018. The usage-based Credit B will apply for the first six months of the year as DTE passes 100 percent of our savings from tax reform back to customers.

Want to find out more about how you can manage your energy bills through the winter? There’s a wealth of useful tips and information available at dteenergy.com/staywarm to help you be in control of your energy usage and your monthly bill.