Winter is fast approaching and energy bills are ever increasing with Npower the latest of the big 6 to announce a price hike. They have warned customers that from October gas bills will rise by 15.7 and electricity by 7.2.
With Npower’s recent announcement this means 5 of the big 6 have increased their prices, which is taking the average household gas bill from £665 a year to £740 a year, a hefty amount extra! Higher bills and a predicted colder winter coming soon means we are desperately looking for ways to save money or battle against the price increase.
Fuel poverty, defined as spending at least a tenth of income on energy bills, increased last year with 3.5 million people being in this group, and 25,400 deaths caused by the cold weather of last winter! It is no surprise that the older generation are taking to sitting in shopping centres and libraries to save money on their heating bills, according to the National Pensioners Convention.
How can we cut our energy bills then?
The Energy Saving Trust say the best savings to be had is through Loft Insulation saving you £145 per year, Cavity Wall Insulation saving £110 , double glazing will save you £130 and the biggest saver with £225 would be installing an A-rated boiler.
Installing any of these will get you the greatest savings, but even little things like turning the thermostat down a degree will save you £50 a year. It does mean you will have to wear an extra layer, or my favourite option, bringing down a blanket, making a cup of hot chocolate and snuggling up with a good film!
To save money further, investigate cheap fixed tariffs with companies on a dual fuel account to potentially save £100 a year, and pay direct debit and you could save 7 on an average energy bill. Other lifestyle changes include using a lid on a pan to cook pasta and rice on a low flame, and turning down radiators in rooms you aren’t using will help keep the pounds in your pocket.
However, if any of the above are in desperate need of replacing then check out the Energy Saving Trust website as grants for energy efficiency improvements are available. It is worth researching as you may be entitled to a helping hand.
Help is something that is definitely needed over this winter as the government has now cut winter fuel allowances and considering the elderly are the most vulnerable from fuel poverty, changes to our homes and lifestyles seems the only way to stay warm this winter.
Anglian Home Improvements raising the standard since 1966. Visit the Anglian website for information on our energy efficient A-rated EcoGain windows.