Consumers Energy says winter heating costs could be more than 15 percent lower than average this winter saving the average customer over $100.

Lower heating costs are expected this winter for Consumers Energy's natural gas customers. Total savings could be more than $100 for an average residential customer, depending on weather and actual usage.

"Customer heating costs could be down by more than 15 percent based on normal winter gas consumption," said Tim Sparks, Consumers Energy's vice president of energy supply operations.

"Our storage system allows us to buy gas when it costs less in the summer, for use by customers during the colder winter months," Sparks added.

These kinds of projections partially rely on the weather forecast. It's hard to say how accurate the cost projection will end up being, but starting costs are lower than in prior years and therefore likely to be less this year.

Consumers Energy natural gas prices (per thousand cubic feet):

  • 2015 - $3.31
  • 2014 - $5.14
  • 2013 - $4.63
  • 2012 - $5.45
  • 2011 - $6.17
  • 2010 - $6.99
  • 2009 - $7.27
  • 2008 - $8.17
  • 2007 - $7.73
  • 2006 - $8.39