The upcoming heating season in New Jersey is not likely to see any major increases in home heating costs.

Fuel Merchants Association of New Jersey President Eric Degesero says for those customers buying heating oil for the season, "we are down 35 percent from two years ago, and 40 percent from three years ago."

According to the Federal Energy Information Agency, New Jersey heating oil prices going into this season average about $2.35 a gallon. The EIA says last year's average was $2.50. Two years ago, it was $3.64 a gallon, and $3.86 a gallon three years ago.

According to DeGesero, the price per gallon in the state averages about 16 cents lower this year versus last.

"The last time that we started a heating season in the price environment that we are in right now was back in 2004. To put that in perspective, no one had ever heard of Twitter in 2004."

And that environment exists because crude oil supplies continue to be plentiful on global markets, aided in large part by the continued hefty domestic crude oil supply situation.

For natural gas customers, New Jersey Natural Gas spokesman Mike Kinney says rates this year are "a little less than last year. It is about 0.2 percent, about $2.11 cheaper on their annual bills."

Kinney says that what they are seeing is the low commodity costs for natural gas continuing, and that results in a number of ways in which customers can save. He says, "heading into the winter season, customers should not expect to see too much of a difference over last year."

But everyone agrees, the cost predictions are also subject to how severe the winter ahead will be.

Joe Cutter is the afternoon news anchor on New Jersey 101.5. Contact him at