What Rate per kWh do you pay for energy?

This is the main question when it comes to saving money on energy bills.

If you’re buying petrol, you might compare the price per litre at one garage versus another garage, and you might choose the less expensive option because it costs less.

Well, it’s the same for gas and electricity. Each supplier charges different rates per kWh and in different areas of the Country – it’s just harder to see what they charge.

Which is why you might want to check prices by using an energy price comparison site like Switchwise. Just enter your postcode and your supply information and see how much you could be saving.

Try it now! You can try this comparison test using estimated consumption if you don’t have your details handy.

Free energy price comparison service
By SwitchwiseTM | UKPowerTM | UswitchTM

Student Energy: Saving Money Through Your Tariff

Sorting out your energy bills is much like revision – it isn’t the most interesting thing in the world, but you’ll seriously appreciate the results. Before you even start changing your habits to save energy, check out these tips to optimise your tariff.

1. Direct debit is your friend. It will help you skip late payment charges and force you to budget properly. However, make sure that you’re prepared for the money to leave your account. You don’t want any nasty surprises. It’s a good idea to set up a joint account for it. 

2. Paperless accounts mean that all your bills are delivered online. This is a great plan way to avoid losing your all important bill amongst all those takeaway pizza offers. Most importantly, managing your energy account online could save you up to 10% on your bill! As long as you know when you are due a bill and you check your e-mails regularly, this is a really easy way to save money.

3. Be aware of the pros and cons of different tariffs. ‘Standard’ tariffs are often the most expensive but they are ideal if you want a flexible contract. However, be wary of price hikes that might affect your bills! If you want to avoid massive price changes during your contract then think about a ‘fixed tariff.’ However, these often have nasty exit fees.

4. Dual tariffs. Energychoices.co.uk argue that customers with dual tariffs save the most money on their bills. This means that you have the same supplier for both gas and electricity. Many suppliers encourage this and offer the best deal with this option. However, Which? encourages users to be aware that discounted dual tariffs might not necessarily be any cheaper than using separate suppliers for gas and electricity. Confused? Luckily, Switchwise will do all the work for you. Find the best option for your postcode on our free Energy Price Comparison Service.

Try it out now! Use estimates if you don’t have exact usage numbers.

Free comparison service by
SwitchwiseTM | UKPowerTM | UswitchTM

Mastering Student Energy Supply

Part 1: Choosing the Right Property

After leaving the perpetually cosy life of halls in first year, moving in to a rental property beckons a very cold reality for every University student (if you pardon the pun.) Gone are the days of 24/7 hot water, sweltering radiators and not having to worry about bills. Welcome to adult life: cold and archaic houses that will quite possibly grow mould if you don’t heat them properly. But do not fear! Avoid a very expensive learning curve and let Switchwise guide you through the process from finding your new property, setting up your energy supplier and, most importantly, finding the best deal for you.

We’ll reveal the secret tips through this step by step guide to help you save as much money as possible to spend on what really matters.

So, where to begin? It is important to consider your energy usage as early as possible as student accommodation is typically very energy inefficient. Look at Energy Performance Certificates when viewing properties. A low energy efficiency (E- G rating) will lead to higher energy costs, however, asking yourself a few simple questions to choose the right house could significantly decrease your future energy bills.

1. Do you have double glazing? The Energy Saving Trust estimates that good quality double-glazing could save £90- £120 off annual heating bills for a semi-detached property. Choosing a property with double glazing will conserve alot of energy and keep your house warmer with no effort on your part.

2. Are your bills included in your rent? Some properties have certain bills included. This may save you a lot of money and hassle in the long term but make sure that you fully understand the terms of this arrangement. Check with the landlord so you know exactly which bills you are liable to pay for and if there are any limitations. Ensure that there aren’t any fees for excessive usage as students are likely to use a large, but unpredictable, amount of energy.

2. Does the property have mould issues? If possible, ask the current tenants if they have had any issues with mould or high bills. If a property that you are viewing has problems with mould, it may require far more expensive heating than a house without issues. Dehumidifiers can combat mould but these can be expensive to buy and run.

3. Does the property have carpets? The BBC states that flooring without insulation accounts for 10% of domestic heat loss. A carpeted property will help your house stay warmer and conserve energy.

4. What kind of meter do you have? Energychoices.co.uk, an independent consumer service, state that households with a prepayment meter pay far more than those who have quarterly bills. They recommend that that you ask the landlord if a standard meter could be installed to avoid overpaying for your bills.

5. Does the property have an electric shower? A recent report on water consumption stated that hot water accounts for 10% of total energy bills. Electric showers use less water overall and heat water at the point of use so no heat energy is lost during transportation. While gas is typically cheaper than electricity, electric showers are more cost-effective than other types if you have shorter showers.

While many of the properties you are considering may be energy inefficient, choosing the right property could effortlessly begin to save you money. If you are unsure about how much energy you are using in your current household, find out by using our Home Electricity Running Cost Calculator.

In our next segment of the Student Guides, we will be discussing  how you can avoid overpaying when setting up your energy providers in your new property so make sure you check back next week!

 

 

Energy Saving Lightbulbs

Wise Owl Fact Of The Week 
Energy Saving Lightbulbs – CFL

Energy saving light bulbs are known in the industry as ”CFL light bulbs”. CFL stands for ”Compact Fluorescent Light” bulb but you might recognise CFL’s better as the bulb that lives in that random drawer in the kitchen that’s full of other energy saving light bulbs, batteries and remote controls for TVs you don’t own anymore. They were created in response to the fact that in normal lightbulbs only 10% of the energy is used to create light, the remaining 90% of energy creates heat that never gets used.

CFL’s stay in that drawer because they are deemed not as bright as normal bulbs or they take too long to reach full brightness. However, it’s all down to the individual bulb. At the right wattage and given time to warm up properly, energy saving light bulbs can be just as bright as normal bulbs, while simultaneously being 80% more energy efficient and lasting up to 12 times longer. A study conducted in the United States stated “A household that invested $90 in changing 30 normal bulbs to CFLs would save $440 to $1,500 over the five-year life of the bulbs. Look at your utility bill and imagine a 12% discount to estimate the savings”

If you’re trying to save money and live more sustainably, try swapping your standard bulbs for CFL bulbs, compare and switch energy suppliers and look into other more sustainable energy options such as solar and wind power!

Try out the home energy savings calculator now! Use usage estimates if you haven’t got you exact details.

Free comparison service by
SwitchwiseTM | UKPowerTM | UswitchTM