How to save money on utilities
Did you receive a bit of a shock when you opened your latest gas or electricity bill and saw how high the price was? Perhaps you weren’t expecting it and didn’t have the funds readily available for the unexpected price hike. Whilst payday loans are an excellent way to help you in the short-term, we will also reveal ways in which you can save money on utilities in the long-term, as well as helping to make your home more energy efficient.
Turning down your thermostat
Did you know that according to the Energy Saving Trust, turning down the thermostat in your property by just 1ºC can reduce your annual heating bills by over £85? It is worth putting that extra jumper on in the chillier months or use a hot water bottle rather than immediately going to flick the heating switch on. It is also worth considering a smart thermostat, which can help you save further cash as you can operate it remotely.
Program your heating
If you have already turned down the thermostat, why not look at getting heating controls? These can be programmed so that the heating is turned off in empty or barely used rooms when you aren’t in the property.
There is a number of ways you can stop heat escaping from gaps in your home, which could be another easy way to help reduce the cost of your energy bills. For example, consider the following:
- Using draught-proofing strips for door gaps, or draught excluders for the bottom of them
- Using draught-proofing strips for window frames
- Reduce hot air escaping by using draught-proofing strips in loft hatches
- Fit a cap in a chimney pot if you do not regularly use your fireplace
- Use a silicone-based filler for skirting and floorboards
Replacing the boiler
By replacing an old (G-rated) gas boiler with a new condensing model could save you up to a staggering £652 each year for the average household! Nevertheless, be warned that getting a new boiler in itself is an investment and doesn’t come cheap, costing around £3,000 to replace.
if you already have a new boiler, there are other ways you can check you are using it in the most cost-efficient way as possible, by making sure that the boiling programmer is being used effectively (i.e. only coming on when you actually need the heating to be on) and making sure that the radiators are working properly so that energy is not being wasted.
Buy an energy monitor
To cut down on utility bills and to make your home more energy efficient, consider buying a handheld energy monitor that shows you exactly how much energy you are using in your property and therefore allowing you to see where you need to cut back on costs. They cost on average £20-£30 however if your energy supplier is in the process of replacing your old meter with smart metes you will receive one for no additional cost.
Managing your energy bill
By choosing to pay your energy bills through direct debit, you can cut down on your costs over the course of the year and therefore avoid receiving a huge winter bill. In addition, you should make an effort to regularly check your meter to ensure the bill and reading are as accurate as possible, and it also avoids the build-up of a credit or debit balance.
Using energy-saving light bulbs
If you do not want to make a huge investment to cut down your energy bills in the long run, such as buying a new boiler, then replacing light bulbs with energy-saving ones could be exactly what you are looking for. They last for longer than traditional bulbs, and LEDs compared to traditional incandescents use a staggering 90% less energy. If you do already own these kinds of bulbs, remember to switch off any lights when they are not being used too.
Having home insulation
Getting loft and cavity wall insulation is well-worth your investment. On average having loft insulation in a typical three-bedroom house could help to save you nearly £180 each year on your utility bills, as the insulations help to prevent heat being lost through your roof.
In addition, having fitted solid-wall insulation could save you even more money (up to £260 using the same previous example) however, it is important to note that this tends to be a lot more expensive to fit than simply having loft insulation. For a cheaper alternative to both these options, you could also look at insulating cavity walls in your property, which is thought to save an estimated £140 every year.