I don’t know if you’re like me, but I really hate spending money on bills. I guess it’s because I feel like I don’t get anything for it, which I know sounds silly but if you buy some clothes for example, then the clothes are
sat there hung up nicely in the wardrobe for you to look at and wear. I’m the same with petrol. Hate paying for it! Because again, I feel like I don’t get much for it.
At the end of the day, the less money paid towards bills, is more money in your pocket. For debt reduction, fun experiences, investment – all the good things to put your money towards.
Check if you can get on a cheaper plan
When we first moved here, I searched and searched for the best plan, which I got. I had the silly thought that it would still be the cheapest as it had not increased in price. D’oh! When I was looking at my outgoings, I was going to look at comparison websites but then I went on the amazing Money Saving Expert who does it all for you. I joined up to the Cheap Energy Club. This is amazing! You just have to fill in your information and usage (which can be found through your current providers) and it will calculate the best and cheapest companies for you. You can also sign up to be told if there are newer, cheaper deals with in a certain timeframe e.g. you can ask to be contacted in 6 months if there is a better deal. I switched to a new provider really easily and very quickly – the companies handle the hand-over so I didn’t have to do anything. No complaints about the company so far (touch wood!). I also got cash back with it too.
If you don’t have this website available in your country, I would recommend going on the comparison websites. The savings will be worth it.
Use energy saving bulbs
Hopefully this point will be redundant as everyone should be using energy saving bulbs by now. They are great and I rate them very highly.
Turn everything off standby
I am a nightmare for this. My mum goes mad because I always turn her microwave off at the wall whenever I go round. Just because I accidentally switched the fridge off instead once! Oops…! But just think of all of the things in your house that are costing you to keep the little red light on, or in the case of the microwave, the light up clock. It may not seem like a huge saving, but getting into the habit of turning things off will add up eventually. It pay seem like only pennies saved but keep at it.
I am also a bit paranoid about electrical fires too!
Get rid of your tumble dryer
This is a huge energy sapper in the common household. I know a lot of people who love them, but I would rather wait an extra day or so than so pay for the convenience. Of course, this is up to you personally, but if you are in a bad money situation, this is something to consider. And if you sell your tumble dryer…more money made!
Let your hair dry naturally
This is something that would be beneficial to the condition of your hair as well. It’s recommended that you wait til your hair is 80% dry before putting the hair dyer on it, because it is so bad for your hair. And not only that, but the hairdryer can use a lot of electricity to run. So a saving on your electric bill, and better condition hair…who knew?!
Cup of tea, anyone?
When making a cup of tea, coffee etc, boil only enough water for your drink. Or if you are going to drink a few throughout the day, keep a flask next to the kettle and keep the boiled water in there to save you boiling the kettle throughout the day. Every little helps!
Turn the thermostat down
If you can’t bear to do this (who likes being cold?! I am terrible at being cold), turn it down by just 1 degree. You shouldn’t notice it, but your energy bills certainly will. But make sure you are warm enough, you don’t want to put your health at risk.
Insulate your house
Have you got insulation? The majority of heat in houses is lost through the roof. We are lucky in that we have super thick insulation in the attic and also in the walls. Heat is retained really well in our house so you can definitely see the results. Make sure you get the insulation done by a professional.
Mind the gap!
Check if there are any draughts in the house. The most common culprits are windows and doors. It doesn’t need to cost much – for example in front of our front door we just put an old dressing gown instead of buying a draught excluder. I found a great website for tips on how best to draught-proof your home – Energy Saving Trust.
Batch cooking is when you cook a lot of dishes at the same time in the oven so that you don’t have the oven on for hours every day. It also saves the effort of cooking something from scratch every day.
I don’t do this a lot because of the meals that we eat, but I always make sure I have at least two things in the oven at the same time.
This is a big decision to make. Should you get solar panels or not? It seems like an obvious answer, because solar panels can save so much money from you doing absolutely nothing – it’s very passive. But you may have to shell out for the cost of them initially – although I have seen solar panel grants popping up. Also there is a way to get free solar panels but make sure you look at the pros and cons. One big thing to check is if your mortgage provider is ok with you doing it.
We are very lucky, our house was built with solar panels in the roof tiles which is very aesthetically pleasing and saves us a chunk of money on our electricity bill.
Have showers, not baths
Showers use much less water than a bath does, which means less time for the boiler to be on to heat up the water for you. You could of course have cold showers if you are going frugal extreme…
I was always a bit sceptical if this was true about the water usage, so I put the plug in whilst having a shower one today (our shower is in the bath) and it was only a small amount of water left in there at the end.
These are on 24 hours a day, every day, so they use a lot of energy. Having an energy efficient fridge/freezer is important.
Dust the coils at the back of the fridge to help it run efficiently.
A full freezer is much more efficient than an empty one. Make sure it is always full – I have heard tips of using bottles filled with water in the freezers to fill it.
Cooking on the hob
Use the correct size pan for what you are cooking and use a lid where possible. You can use a steamer with tiers to save on energy as it will use the same energy to cook all of it.
When it all boils down to it, the less electricity and gas you use, the cheaper it will be. Does anyone have any other energy saving tips?
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