I have decided to review our electricity, gas and water meters monthly, to keep an eye on our usage and prevent any big shocks when the first bill comes through the door.
This month we have used:
Gas – £2.06
Electricity - £34.01
Water – £26.55 (not including the £118 water leak when we first moved in, which is thankfully being paid by the landlord)
The average UK energy bill is £1259 per year, which of course includes a lot of winter heating and child-related costs. Our combined total for this month is £36.07 (a quarter of the UK average) but I still think we could lower this, especially since there are only two of us and it isn't winter yet!
The average UK water bill is £376 a year. Ours will be £312 if it stays the same, so we should definitely be able to cut back on this!
Methods we already use to cut down energy use:
- Currently no heating
- Clothes are washed at 30°C
- We don't have a tumble drier, so clothes are dried outside on that rare sunny day
- The fridge is fairly empty, which helps it to run efficiently (see comments below for a discussion on whether this is actually the case!!)
- Energy saving light bulbs
- We have a mini-oven, so we don't have to pre-heat the big oven for ages just to cook a small meal for two
Methods we use to save water:
- Wait for a full load of washing before running the machine
- Take showers not baths
- If it's yellow, we let it mellow (my Mum will kill me if she sees that!) :)
- The toilet has a very small tank, so we're not wasting litres of water down the drain
- We live in Bristol, so there's no need to water the plants! :)
To try and get the bills down this month, I will be employing the following tactics:
- Mark a line on the kettle for two mugs of water (The Boyfriend gets a bit enthusiastic and boils it nearly full!!)
- Be very careful to turn things off at the wall. The TV is in standby mode even if you push the off button on the set, so you really have to turn it off at the wall.
- Look into getting better curtains. The curtains in our flat are so thin you can half see through them! They won't do any good in winter when we need to insulate the flat as much as possible.
- Get a shower timer. We are both guilty of luxuriating in the shower for far longer than necessary. We need to jump in, get clean and get out!
How do you rate against the UK average bills? Got any top tips for us? (We are renting so can't do anything that permanently affects the property, such as installing insulation and changing kitchen appliances).