The next few months are going to be tough for many households across the UK. It’s apparent that the monthly costs of energy, food and petrol will be at an all-time high for the foreseeable. A recent survey from Step Change highlighted the worries and struggles that UK households will be facing due to the rise in costs of living.
“Millions of people expect to fall into problem debt this year due to the rise in the cost of living, energy price caps and National Insurance contributions.”stepchange.org
We understand that for many, these increased costs will cause major financial worries. Due to the current climate, there may not be much point in changing energy providers, however, we have some tips and home improvement ideas that might help to keep your costs as low as possible.
1) Smart Meters
You can ask your energy supplier to install a new smart meter if you don’t have one already. You should also be offered a digital in-home display with the meter which will allow you to keep an eye on your spending and plan for upcoming bills. Read more information about smart meters to decide if installing one is right for you on the Citizen’s Advice website.
As well as insulating your home, it’s also important to keep the heat from escaping through the glass. Double or triple glazed windows can help save money on bills so it may be worth asking your landlord to make the investment. Cheaper options that you can install yourself include window film (read more about it on the Money Saving Expert forum) and draft excluding self-adhesive strips.
3) Drafty Doors
According to the Energy Saving Trust, this is one of the cheapest and most effective ways to save energy, which in turn saves you money. And, even better, you can do it yourself. Key-hole covers, letterbox brushes, and draft excluders are all small and relatively cheap options that you can buy online and install yourself.
4) Shower Heads
Most people know that a shower can be cheaper than a bath as it uses less water. But, with the wrong shower head, you could waste just as much. Check out the Which? guide to Eco Showerheads, and find one that will save you money and be good for the planet too.
5) Free Home Improvements
There are a number of grants available to help you make energy-efficient improvements to your home such as insulation and boiler replacements. Insulating your home can cut your heating bills by up to £290 a year. Energy-efficient appliances such as washing machines and dryers could also reduce the cost of monthly bills. They may have a larger upfront cost but will save money in the long run. Find out more here (for homeowners), and here (for landlords).
Sometimes you might need support or independent advice that we are unable to provide. If you are struggling with debt or the cost of living please make the most of local support groups.Where to get support