We don't know for sure where prices are headed but we do expect the volatility to remain high. The good news is that we have programs that can protect you from extreme price movements. The programs are as follows:
The Prepay Program*:
You can currently lock into the price of your heating oil by pre-purchasing a set number of gallons. The minimum purchase is 500 gallons. Call (802) 773-7400 for current pricing. The price is guaranteed until April 30, or until your credit is used up, whichever comes first. Prepaid oil must be delivered on an automatic delivery basis unless other arrangements are made at the time you sign up. We expect to have a prepaid rate on offer into the fall.
The Special Budget Program:
Under this program customers can guarantee their price per gallon and spread the cost into monthly payments. Call (802) 773-7400 for current pricing. We estimate your annual consumption, multiply by the guaranteed rate, and divide the total cost into monthly payments due by the 15th of each month. The payments start the month you sign up. If you use more gallons than were budgeted for, current retail rates will apply. Special Budget oil must be delivered on an automatic delivery basis. If you currently have a balance due, but would still like to participate, we have a plan that will bring you up to date and give you a guaranteed price.
Downside Protection Option:
In an effort to address the recent volatility of heating oil, we have come up with a way to protect you if the price of oil drops after you lock into a price, if you choose to do so. If Rutland Fuel Company's retail price goes lower than your guaranteed price on the day of delivery, you will automatically be charged the lower price.The cost for this price protection will be a non-refundable $0.20 per gallon fee. Locking into a fixed price with downside protection gives you a ceiling price (the most you will pay no matter what!) as well as the guaranteed right to pay a lower price when the going rate is below the rate that you have locked into. Another way of describing a fixed-price program (prepay or budget) combined with downside protection is a "Price Cap". Call the office at (802) 773-7400 for a further explanation of how this works.
You also have many options without locking into a price or choosing a cap:
Many of our customers will stay with our floating retail rate, which fluctuates depending on world oil prices. If you would like to prepay or budget next winter's oil without locking into a price we can offer $.15 or $.10discountsrespectively off of our daily retail rate , thereby creating a "Floating Prepay" or "Floating Budget". These "floating" plans guarantee you a discount as you "go with the flow," but do not provide an unchanging (fixed) or ceiling (fixed with downside) price for the winter. If you have any questions just give us (Mike, Blithe, or myself) a call at (802) 773-7400.
Sincerely, Scott Sullivan, President
*You must have a zero balance to qualify for programs marked with an asterisk.