Managing energy costs during the crisis
The Energy Crisis has hit the UK, adding to the financial worries of thousands of our members. Below we outline some options to cut costs and improve your financial wellbeing.
Everyday changes to cut costs
There are many simple changes you can make to your day to day living which can cut your energy bills. This includes:
- Encouraging the family to switch off the lights and electricals whenever you aren’t using them.
- Reducing the temperature of your water/ heaters on your boiler, or reducing the temperature on your thermostat or using a timer in the shower.
- Eliminating any drafts around your home by placing draft excluders under doors and blocking any holes.
There also larger scale changes which could save you £££ each year. Please see the list below.
Stick with your current provider. The guidance used to be to look for cheaper providers and switch to save money. However, with the rise of the price cap the lowest fixed rate will now be £2017, which is likely to be more expensive than your current tariff. For this reason, the advice generally is to stick with your current provider. If you are on a fixed term tariff, the price of your energy will not increase until this contract ends.
It is important to note that not all energy contracts have the cap applied and that your figure can vary around the figure stated above, so it is worth checking what applies to you.
Pay by direct debit. Though it means you only spend what you have, a pay as you go meter is the most expensive way to pay for energy. Having a smart meter in your home will allow you to monitor how much energy you’re using throughout the month and a direct debit means that you will not miss a payment.
If you staying on a pre-payment meter, you can use the money management tools on our website to save where you can.
Ensure that your home is energy efficient. This will naturally reduce the amount of energy required to heat your home and the amount of money you spend. If you are renting, you should ask your landlord to insulate your home. This can be done by installing:
- Double Glazing
- Draught proofing
Additionally, there may be recommendations on your energy performance certificate.
You can also use an Energy Advice Calculator to find out how to increase the energy efficiency of your home. Although home improvements cost money to install, you may be able to apply for funding. Follow the link below to Money Helpers Guide on how to pay for home Improvements:
Warm Home Discount: You can check if your supplier offers this. The discount reduces your energy bill if you are on low income. Follow the link below for further info and how to apply:
Warm Home Discount Scheme: Overview - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)
Household Support Fund: The Household Support Fund is a scheme in England which can provide vouchers or financial support to homes in need. This is paid by each council, at their own discretion. While the rules vary you do not need to be on benefits to qualify. To find out more, go to your local council website.
Aside from these, you call your energy provider and ask if they offer any grants and check our website for sources of funding.
Resources, and tools to help you with budgeting, banking, car costs, utilities, tips on saving and advice on analysing spending habits.
If your household income feels tight or you've had a change in circumstance, check your entitlement to benefits, or look at other ways to increase your income.