1. Bigger bills!
The average household bill for gas and electricity is £1,320 - double what it cost ten years ago. To cut your bills one of the first things you should do is switch to the cheapest energy provider. After that it comes down to using less.
There are pretty much 2 ways to reduce the amount of energy you use - changing your home or changing your habits. Altering the way you use energy is something you can implement today - the savings might not be as large but they don't cost you anything either. You've just got to remember to do them.
Making alterations to your home may come at a price but it can save you money in the longer term. There are key investments which, if right for your home, are likely to pay for themselves most quickly and save you the most money.
2. Changing your home
All savings are based on a typical three-bedroom semi-detached gas heated house, with an 81% efficient gas boiler and average gas tariff of 4.21p/kWh and electricity tariff of 13.52p/kWh.
If your home needs the following improvements, you could save nearly £600 a year if you get them sorted: draft proofing, swapping all traditional light bulbs for energy saving versions, getting an energy efficient shower head, installing a thermostat, insulating your cavity walls and loft.
3. Changing your habits
These are the kind of things you can change today, without spending any cash.
Understand your heating system and how to set it
This is easier said than done. Ideally you'd get the person who installed everything to explain it to you. If this isn't an option there is guidance on the Energy Saving Trust website.
Turning off appliances
Ok…forgive us for being obvious here but this could save a typical household £50 - £90 a year. The only things that shouldn't be turned off when not being used are satellite and digital TV boxes which have been set for recording programmes…oh and your fridge/freezer of course.
Taking shorter showers
Spending one minute less in the shower each day could save as much as £10 off your energy bills each year, per person in the household.
Being careful with the kettle
Only filling it up with as much water as you need could save around £7 a year.
Use a washing-up bowl
Using a bowl to wash up (rather than leaving the hot tap running) could save around £30 a year.
Wash your clothes at 30C
Washing your clothes at 30 degrees celsius instead of 40 will save around £6 a year on energy bills.
*All calculations are based on an average electricity price of 13.52p/kWh.
4. Energy saving myths
There are a few myths about energy saving that could be costing you cash. Can you work out which of these statements is false?
5. Power hungry appliances
Ever wondered which of your appliances are adding most to your bill? Knowing the biggest offenders will help you realise where the biggest savings can be made.
6. So could you save a third?
Think you could do it?