IT’S a modern celebration of Christmas, but escalating electricity prices mean it will cost you upwards of $100 to light up your house for the festive season.
However, for long-time Coffs Harbour Christmas light decorators Ron Cowling and his neighbour Bronwyn Humphreys, of Lesley Close, it’s a price worth paying.
“The whole street got in to the Christmas lights in a big way five years ago. It’s just amazing when the neighbourhood is all lit up, seeing families walking the streets, cars driving down the road, and kids on their dad’s shoulders saying the lights are magic, it’s well worth it,” Mr Cowling said.
Ron runs about 3000 LED lights, plus motorised ornaments and reindeer.
Testing of his light-show indicates he could have up to $100 added to his next power bill.
Next door, Mrs Humphreys is also determined not to let an outdated power grid be the Grinch of Christmas.
“This is our reward to the people of Coffs Harbour. It gives them something special to come out and see as a family,” Mrs Humphreys said.
“We know the cost of electricity has gone up, but it just wouldn’t be Christmas without Christmas lights,” she said.
Our test on 1000 standard two-watt LED Christmas lights proved they cost about 40 cents to run each hour.
That’s based on the local residential power charge of about 20 cents per kilowatt hour. Multiply that by running the lights about six hours a day for a month and it works out to be $72.