1. Check you are on the cheapest tariff – most gas and electricity suppliers will offer you a lower standard price if you sign up to a fixed contract and all should give you a dual fuel discount. Check your tariff and see if you are on the cheapest one. You will need the unit price and your annual consumption to use a comparison site but you could make significant savings. If you are on a ‘standard’ tariff then change immediately because you will be paying far too much!
2. Turn off plug sockets – it may seem simple but that phone charger which is plugged in all day every days is costing you money! Trust me – unplug everything for a month and see the change in your usage. The only items I have permanently switched on are my boiler and my fridge/freezer. I don’t use my cooker every day so as soon as I’m finished with it I turn it off.
3. Turn off your lights – every time you leave a room turn the light off. The whole house doesn’t need to be blazing as soon as the sun goes down. Only turn on the lights if you need them and keep your curtains open (if appropriate depending on your view!) to make the most of the daylight.
4. Use energy saving light bulbs – these can be irritating when you turn the light on and it takes a while to warm up but they genuinely do last longer! I haven’t gone out and bought new light bulbs for my house but I am replacing them with energy saving bulbs when they need changing.
5. Don’t have multiple devices running at the same time – when I was at University or living at my parents house this never occurred to me because I didn’t pay the bills but you really can’t concentrate on the television and your laptop at the same time. Make a pact to only have one electronic item in use and this will make a difference to your bills.
6. Like hot drinks? Only boil the water you need – I don’t drink tea or coffee but I love having hot squash or even just hot water. I boil enough water to fill my cup and that’s it. The more water you have in the kettle the longer it takes to boil and the more electricity it uses. I don’t measure the exact amount because I pretty much know how much I need in a cup. Just don’t make the mistake of filling the kettle to the brim every time when you only need a small amount of water.
7. Turn your thermostat down – in the depths of winter it’s wonderful to have the heating on all day every day but even if you are on the cheapest deal it is still very expensive to have the heating on for hours as a time. Turn your thermostat down a couple of degrees, snuggle up with a blanket and put on a jumper. It won’t kill you!
8. Turn the tap off when you brush your teeth – I am actually gobsmacked that people do this but apparently this is a ‘thing’. Stop leaving the tap running! Whether you’re on a water meter or not you shouldn’t be wasting this precious resource for no reason and if you are on a meter then that water running down the drain is costing you money!
9. Don’t spend longer than you need to in the shower – it feels wonderful standing under that stream of hot water but again it’s such a waste of money and water.
10. Don’t fill your washing up bowl to the brim – I only fill up my bowl half way when I’m washing up, I can use less water and still be able to keep my dishes clean.
11. Don’t cook from frozen – I never cook food from frozen because I thaw food first. This can slash the cooking time by up to half meaning I don’t have to wait as long for food and I use less electricity.
12. Defrost your fridge freezer – if you have a frost free appliance then you’re lucky but if not try to defrost your freezer on a monthly basis. The more ice you have built up in your freezer the harder the motor has to work to keep your food cold. This can reduce the lifespan of your appliance and your food will go off quicker which will cost you money.
I do all of the above and I spend around £40 per month on gas, electricity and water. Some of the above may seem a little extreme but if you really want to save a lot of money you need to make sacrifices.
It’s definitely worth contacting your utility supplier to see if you are eligible for a smart meter. This can really help you to keep track of your usage and you will get up to date bills as well.
Do you think you can use any of these tips? Do you have any others to add to the list? Let me know I’m always interested in hearing more ways to save money.
Lots of love
x Beth x