Utility bills are a major expense for many households in the UK. From electricity to gas to water and internet, utility costs can cause a significant dent in your finances. But you can outsmart the rising costs by making a few lifestyle and usage changes. Here’s how!
Saving Costs on Utility Bills in the UK
According to a report from the UK Office for National Statistics (ONS), the average UK household spends about £114 per month on utility bills including gas, water, electricity, broadband and television.
However, this figure varies across households as the sum of bills is dependent on several factors such as the size of the household, location, property type and energy efficiency levels.
For instance, a more enormous household may utilize more water and energy than a smaller one. And a more energy-efficient household may use less heating and cooling resources, lowering utility bills.
Also, the cost of utility bills has risen significantly in the UK in recent years. And as such, saving costs on utility bills has become more paramount than ever. And here’s how you can save money whilst making optimum use of utility services.
1. Compare Energy Providers
If you are looking to save money on utility bills, you should start by comparing energy providers and settle for a cheaper but more efficient provider. The UK energy market is as competitive as it gets and there are a plethora of providers you can patronize.
You can leverage price comparison websites such as uSwitch, MoneySuperMarket and Compare the Market to gauge prices across energy providers and find the best deal that suits your financial needs. You should also review your energy consumption regularly, so you can switch to a new tariff or provider when the need arises.
2. Monitor your Energy Usage
Saving money on utility bills begins with tracking your energy usage. By monitoring your usage, you can identify and review areas with the highest consumption rates. Here are some simple steps you can take to monitor your energy consumption:
Adopt Smart Meters — Many energy and water providers in the UK offer smart meters that provide accurate data about your utility consumption in real-time. With one of these devices, you can track how much water or energy you are using and the associated expense. The best part is, smart meters are typically installed free of charge.
Use Home Energy Monitors — these are devices that you can install in your home to observe your energy usage. They provide real-time data about energy consumption and will help you cut down where needed.
Review your Utility Bills — you can also keep tabs on your energy or water consumption by examining your bills. You can pinpoint any abnormalities in usage and probe the cause.
Energy Monitoring Apps — in today’s technology-driven world, there is an app for virtually everything and energy monitoring apps are part of the offerings. Download one of these apps to help you track your energy consumption data.
3. Save Money on Water Bills
Water is a basic and indispensable necessity for all households in the UK. However, water bills can take a huge chunk of your finances. Nonetheless, you can reduce the impact by incorporating these measures:
Fix leaks — leaks waste water and can markedly up your water bills. Hence, it is important to fix leaks as soon as they occur. You can hire a home service plumber to do this for you. Also regularly check for leaks in your faucets, shower heads and toilets as they can go unnoticed.
Install Water-efficient Fixtures — water-efficient fixtures such as sinks with auto-shutoff configurations, low-flow shower heads and water-saving urinals can reduce water consumption without compromising functionality.
Cut down Shower Time — Showers are refreshing no doubt, but they consume lots of water. So take shorter showers to minimize water consumption and reduce your water bills.
4. Use Energy-Efficient Appliances
One of the smartest ways to save cost on utility bills is to use energy-efficient appliances. These appliances consume less energy than traditional appliances. Here’s how you can make the most of energy-efficient appliances:
Opt for Energy-conserving Light Bulbs — Switch out conventional incandescent, fluorescent or halogen bulbs with energy-efficient LED bulbs. LED bulbs are designed to consume less energy and have a longer usage time than traditional bulbs.
Purchase Energy Star Certified Appliances — look for products with the Energy Star label when shopping for appliances. The label indicates less energy consumption than traditional electrical appliances and will noticeably reduce your overall energy consumption.
Unplug Appliances when not in Use — Most appliances still consume energy when not in use. So make it a habit to unplug your TV, sockets, chargers and computers when not in use to avoid hefty energy bills.
Opt for a Programmable Thermostat — A programmable thermostat can effectively control your cooling and heating systems. Set the thermostat to optimum temperatures at different times of the day to minimize your energy consumption and reduce your heating and cooling bills.
5. Review your Bundling Services
You can reduce your utility costs in the UK by reviewing your bundling services. Consider these tips:
Consider Bundle Packages — Most utility providers in the UK offer bundle packages comprising multiple services such as electricity, gas and broadband. Buying an all-in-one package is generally cheaper than paying for individual services.
Note the Length of the Contract — If you opt for a bundle package, note the contact length as most of the providers require customer patronage for a certain time frame. So make sure the time frame is in your best interest before signing up.
Check Hidden Costs — Some bundle packages conceal certain costs in “plain sight” such as installation fees and early termination fees. Carefully read the terms and conditions to detect hidden costs and avoid unplanned expenses.
Capitalise on Incentives — Many UK providers offer incentives to attract traffic and sales. These include vouchers, cash backs and discounts. So always check to see if there are incentives to reduce your bills.
6. Consider Renewable Energy Sources
Renewable energy sources are a surefire approach to minimizing energy consumption in a household. Here are tips on how to make the most of renewable energy sources to reduce bills and minimize carbon footprint:
Install Solar Panels — Get a house service specialist to install solar panels in your home and get renewable energy. These panels generate electricity from sunlight and will significantly reduce if not eliminate your energy bills. Though they may be expensive to install, the long-term benefits make them a cost-efficient energy solution.
Install a Wind Turbine — if you reside in a location with strong winds, consider installing a small wind turbine. Wind turbines generate electricity and are a great alternative to solar panels.
Consider Biomass — Biomass is a renewable energy resource, derived from organic materials such as wood, crops, and animal wastes. It is a great alternative to fossil fuels and can be used to generate heat and electricity.
Use Geothermal Energy — Geothermal energy utilizes heat from the earth to yield electricity. If you reside in an area that has abundant geothermal resources, consider installing geothermal heating and cooling systems to conserve energy and save costs on utility bills.
7. Insulate your Home
A tested and trusted measure, insulating your home can help you cut down on utility expenditure. Here’s how to conserve energy consumption when heating or cooling your home.
Install Insulation Systems — insulation systems generate heat inside your home during winter and extract heat out of your home during summer. You can install these systems in several places in your home including the attic, walls and floors to promote heat generation and loss. It is imperative to enlist a professional’s help in installing insulation systems in your home.
Install Double-Glazed Windows — Double-glazed windows are engineered with two glass panes with an adjoining gap to insulate a space and minimize heat loss. They are generally more expensive than single-glazed windows but are incredibly energy-efficient. You can reduce your utility bills by investing in double-glazed windows.
Upgrade Heating Systems — Heating systems are evolving by the minute with newer versions being more energy efficient than older ones. A simple upgrade of your existing heating system can significantly reduce your utility expenditure. For instance, you can switch to a renewable heating source such as a heat pump or replace your boiler with a high-efficiency version.
Seal Air Leaks — Air leaks are often found around doors, windows and other openings in the home. These leaks can compromise heat gain or loss and make your bill run higher than usual. You can fix these leaks with caulking or weatherstripping and maintain optimum insulation temperature at all times.
Get Draft Stoppers — Draft stoppers prevent cold air from getting into a room. The stoppers are placed beneath doors to combat cold air. They are easy to use, inexpensive and the best thing since sliced bread. Using draft stoppers might be game-changing for you concerning energy costs.
The Bottom Line
In summary, there are several ways you can save costs on utility bills and this article highlights them all. Also, If you need professional home services for any of the installations mentioned in the article, you can consult the House Service App!
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