Household bills make up one of the most significant cumulative costs homeowners and renters have to pay each month and finding ways to reduce the monthly costs is a question that’s raised on a regular basis.
While it’s easy to say that the best way of saving money on household bills is to use less energy in general, there are actually a lot of other things you can do alongside being more stringent with your energy usage to ensure that you’re doing everything you can to be more environmentally, and therefore economically friendly.
Switch Household Utility Providers
Often, the easiest thing to do when you want to save on your household bills is to look at who your current provider is and ensure that you’re getting the most affordable deal available to you. If this isn’t the case, then it may well be worth comparing different providers and seeing how much money you can save by changing.
Changing suppliers is much easier than it sounds and if done correctly could result in hundreds of pounds being knocked off your annual household costs. Household bills aren’t always energy and water-related: shopping around and using price comparison websites to compare the price of TV and internet subscription packages can save you a lot of money, with companies more than willing to offer you updated packages as a means of keeping your brand loyalty.
Even if you use a prepayment meter, there’s always the option to change providers. Energy suppliers all have prepayment plans, and naturally, there are differences between prices so make sure you’re using the most affordable of the suppliers.
Make Your Home More Energy Efficient
Making your home more energy efficient isn’t always cheap: in an ideal world, fully insulating your house and replacing old single glazed windows with double glazing would come easily. There are, however, some more affordable things that you can do to cut the cost of your monthly utility bills.
Opening the blinds in the lighter months mean that you are less likely to put on the lights; lighting up your home with natural sunlight is, of course, completely free of charge. Turn off any appliances that you aren’t using. Leaving them on standby means that they are still using a small amount of energy.
In the colder months where it’s more than necessary to warm your house through with central heating, lowering the thermostat ever so slightly. Turning it down just one or two degrees results in a remarkable amount of money saved each month.
If you have an electric shower, then standing under a waterfall of hot water for a long period of time – or even worse, running a bath – is particularly wasteful and can use a lot more energy than you might have been led to believe.
Some research reports that using a power shower actually uses more water, and consequently energy, in a five-minute shower than you would use in a bath. Investing in an energy saving shower head cuts back on both the amount of energy and water you use and will save you a pretty penny.
A final tip to consider for energy efficiency is using energy saving light bulbs. These bulbs can last up to ten times longer than a standard light bulb, and because they work at a lower wattage to standard bulbs, they can save a significant amount of money over the bulb’s lifetime. A little goes a long way and making small changes can make a massive difference to your energy consumption.
If you’re planning on doing the washing, whether that be by using the washing machine and tumble dryer or the dishwasher, make sure that the machine is full. Washing machines and dishwashers use a lot of energy and obviously, doing two half-loads uses double the amount of energy as a full load would use. Double the energy equates to double the cost.
Pay By Direct Debit And Monitor Your Usage
In a lot of rented accommodations, the option to pay via direct debit is removed, with prepayment meters the norm for landlords. If, however, you are not paying by direct debit and have the ability to change to this option, then doing so could further cut the cost of your bill.
It also means that you won’t have to worry about missing bill payments, ensuring that both your credit rating is kept intact and the risk of you missing payments and being left with unnecessary charges that increase your monthly expenditure.
If you’re able to, invest in an energy monitor and keep track of the amount of energy you are using and the money you’re spending on it. Having a monitor can help in encouraging you to be less wasteful and can save you a significant amount each year. No one wants the guilt of being reminded of just how much they’re wasting!