Six simple household tips could help save Angus households £2.6million on their energy bills every year.
This advice from the Big Energy Saving Week comes as it reveals 56 per cent of all Scottish households overlook reviewing their monthly expenses to save money, new figures have revealed.
And while 42 per cent of households believe that changing energy supplier won’t help cut their outgoings, Big Energy Saving Week has found that bill payers could save around £300 simply by switching.
Big Energy Saving Week is a joint campaign between the Energy Saving Trust, Citizens Advice and the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) to help people save on energy costs ahead of the winter.
Running from today (October 31) to November 6, the campaign will host events throughout the UK to offer advice on reducing energy costs and help people keep their homes affordably warm.
The UK-wide Ipsos MORI study carried out by the Energy Saving Trust reveals households will take on a range of strategies to save this amount of money.
Only 44 per cent of Scottish householders consider reviewing their monthly bills if in need of finding an extra £300, and more than a third would be willing to spend 10 hours or more of their free time working overtime.
A fifth of Scottish householders would consider turning to debt via a credit card, while 12 per cent would ask friends or family for a loan.
Meanwhile 30 per cent of people say they would use an extra £300 to pay off debt or buy essential household items.
And the campaign has found that by making a handful of changes in the home, households in Angus could insulate themselves further from fluctuations in the price of their energy bills.
Philip Sellwood, chief executive of the Energy Saving Trust, said: “It is a concern that many people would look to use a credit card or ask those closest to them for cash if they needed to raise an extra £300.
“With 30 per cent of people saying they would use that money for essential items or to pay off debt, this could lead to a vicious cycle of paying off debt with more debt.
“Changing energy supplier is a much more sustainable way of achieving savings of around £300, while simple changes in the home such as adding extra insulation, filling the kettle a bit less or spending one less minute in the shower are easy things that can protect people in Angus from possible energy price fluctuations in future.”
Minister for Consumers Margot James said: “Millions of people have already switched and saved this year, but we know that some people can find it difficult to find the best deal. Big Energy Saving Week will help people up and down the country find out how they could save on their energy bills, many could save around £300, as we create a country that works for everyone.”
Gillian Guy, chief executive of Citizens Advice, added: “People can save hundreds of pounds by switching their gas and electricity.
“By checking how much they’re paying and comparing prices people can work out if they’re currently on the best deal, and if they can cut their bills by going to another supplier.
“Throughout Big Energy Saving Week, Citizens Advice will be hosting events in local communities where people can learn how to save energy, insulate their homes and compare energy prices so they can keep their bills to a minimum. People can also use our online price comparison tool to find a better deal.”
A price comparison tool launched by Citizens Advice allows bill payers to search the market and get an impartial view of the best offers for them.
Outlining annual fee and basing results on location, it is the only site in the UK that provides information on all tariffs available, allowing bill payers to compare options side by side without influence of sponsored results.
It also provides information about whether you can access the Warm Home Discount through each supplier.
Big Energy Saving Week provides face-to-face advice at hundreds of events being held across Britain. To find an event near you, log on to bigenergysavingweek.org.uk. Advice is also available over the telephone through Home Energy Scotland on 0808 808 2282.
To see how much you could save on your energy bill, the Citizens Advice price comparison tool can be found at energycompare.citizensadvice.org.uk.
Six additional energy saving tips
These simple steps can cut bills by as much as a further £2.6million for people in Angus.
1. Move furniture away from radiators
Moving furniture away from radiators can help make a room more comfortable by letting the warmth circulate better – 42 per cent have one or more radiators blocked by furniture. Move furniture away from radiators if you can – ask someone to help if it’s heavy.
2. Draught proof
Draught-proofing windows and doors could save you almost £30 a year. 46 per cent of people still need to draught-proof their windows and doors. This could save Angus homes around £550,000 a year.
3. Energy Saving light bulbs
Replacing all standard bulbs and halogen spotlights in your home with energy saving light bulbs could save you £35 a year. Swapping incandescent bulbs for energy saving and halogens for LEDs would save Angus around £740,000 a year.
You can save around £30 a year just by remembering to turn your appliances off standby mode.
Filling the kettle up with as much water as needed could save around £7 in energy bills a year and around £88,000 for Angus.
6. Shower smarter
Spending one minute less in the shower each day could save as much as £10 off energy bills each year. If you have a water meter this will save a further £12 off annual water and sewerage bills. At least 25 per cent of people could cut a minute off their showers. This would save Angus around £120,000 a year.