The central plains of the United States as well as the rest of the nation have had an unusually mild winter thus far. For most people this means a cheaper winter! Aside from the expenses of the holidays, the presents, the turkey, and the New Year celebrations winters can be unusually expensive for most Americans.
The roads and sidewalks are mostly clear, which is an odd sight for this time of year. Piles of hardened discolored snow usually outline driveways and sidewalks from November until March when they begin to shrink down into little dirt piles. Youngsters are enjoying a break from the chore of shoveling and dad’s enjoying it too, because the snow blower that was on its last leg might just make it another winter.
Aside from homeowners, businesses are enjoying the savings of not having to hire out their snow removal for their large parking lots-hopefully passing the savings on to the consumer. Far fewer accidents have also been reported due to less ice and slippery conditions. Less ice means less salt for cities to pour down on roads which means your new car will experience less rusting saving you and the city money in the end. Aside from the benefits associated with expenses more families were able to make it to their holiday destinations both on the ground and from the air.
The number one benefit of having a warmer winter obviously is the cost of heating your home. With 50 degree days and barely freezing nights, the upper plains have experienced almost a month of above average temps which of course means lower home heating bills. But it’s not just the homeowners that are experiencing delight when opening their utility bills; it’s the business owners too. Heating your 1200 square feet home is one thing, but imagine the cost of heating Wal-Mart, or Sears in the mall! Corporation’s factor in the cost of their utilities along with other winter related expenses and pass that cost down to the consumer. It’s not likely that you’ll see a gallon of milk drop a quarter or bread less than 2.00 a loaf again, but they’re saving money just like the rest of us.
It’s not rare this winter to see people running in and out of stores wearing a short sleeved shirt or standing outside with a tee shirt. A few snakes have even been spotted in South Dakota, snakes which should have been hunkered down below the surface waiting for the first warm days of spring to poke their little heads out. Geese that should have been in Mexico for months are still flying in circles. So it’s not just the humans that are enjoying a break from the cold!