With money being tight these days, treating the entire family to those special days or nights out just got a whole lot more difficult. But before you cut your recreational budget in its entirety, it is worth taking a look at how much money you spend -- and how much you could be saving -- on your household bills. Gas and electricity prices are two easy areas to save in. Here’s how.
The first thing that you’ll want to do is find out if there is a way to get a cheaper tariff with your energy company. Check the company web site to see if they offer deals for customers who sign up to pay bills online or consumers who opt for a dual fuel tariff in which they get electricity and natural gas from the same supplier. These are two very easy ways to bring your bill down without even trying.
However, if you don’t find any such discounts through your company, and you’re not satisfied with the tariff that you have, you could also try to find another energy company. It seems like a time-consuming task that will lead to a stressful hunt for better service, but you can cut down on time and anxiety by using a site that readily provides you with information, such as uSwitch.
Now comes the fun part. Negotiating your tariff is just one way to lower your electricity and gas bills. You could also help your family develop some energy-saving habits around the home. Start with baby steps, telling the kids to turn off the lights whenever they leave the room and reminding them to turn the tap off while they are brushing their teeth. This will get them in a mind-set for saving energy.
Then, make some improvements around the house that will make saving energy easier. You can get a programmable thermostat, for example. Or you could purchase an Ecobee thermostat, which allows you to control the temperature of your home from your smart phone. In addition to adjusting your thermostat to save on heating costs, you should also consider adding insulation to areas likely to experience heat loss, such as the attic. This could prevent up to 15 percent of your current heat loss during winter.
Next, focus your energy on lighting. It’s great that the kids will have started thinking of saving energy for lighting, but there are additional steps that you can take to make the task more effective. To start, you should take out all of your incandescent light bulbs, if you haven’t already. These older-style bulbs require far more energy than compact fluorescent bulbs, which come in the same sizes and styles. Your lighting costs can make up to ten percent of your overall household energy consumption, and with a typical home in Great Britain having more than 15 bulbs, all of these little changes could end up making a big difference.
Lastly, turn your attention to your family’s water use. You can easily reduce heating costs by turning down your hot water heater by a few degrees. Then, installing energy-saving shower heads can help everyone in the family save on water.
If you take these steps, you could save hundreds of pounds each year overall. And after all of that work, it will certainly be time to put that money to good use during a fun time for you and your family.
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