Save energy, save £100s!

07 August 2008 / by Rebecca Sargent
The average household could save more than £900* by paying attention to energy saving tips.

In the wake of energy price hikes from British Gas (up to 35 per cent) and EDF Energy (up to 22 per cent) Fair Investment is offering tips on how to keep your energy bills as low as possible.

Fuel poverty (spending more than 10 per cent of a household income on energy) is becoming a serious issue. According to the Government's Fuel Poverty Advisory Group, the number of households experiencing fuel poverty in 2007 was around 2.9 million, this figure is expected to be well over 3 million for 2008.

And, although energy companies have been priming Brits for the potential price hikes for months, nothing could prepare the UK for increases of up to 70 per cent that are expected by early 2009.

As a result, advice at has been to fix energy rates, as soon as possible, for some time now. However, this is becoming quite a feat as energy companies including E-on and Scottish Power have been forced to temporarily pull their capped energy rate deals as demand surges and affordability falls.

There are currently only a couple of fixed rate energy deals still available and, ironically, one of these is with British Gas whose prices have gone up by as much as 56 per cent so far this year. The deal is fixed until 2011, but at the updated and inflated rate. Energy expert at, Steve Wagner, said:

"I would still advise people to switch to a capped energy prices while you can. Gas and electricity prices are set to rise further and they will not be forgiving on peoples already stretched budgets. There are only a couple of deals left so check them out and apply over the telephone to speed up the process."

However, if you are unable to switch energy provider and cap your energy prices, there are still some things you can do to save money. Mr Wagner explained: "Small changes like replacing normal light bulbs for energy saving models could save you as much as £40 a year off your energy bills. Other changes like ensuring your home is insulated may seem like common sense but really can save you money."

Other top tips for saving money off your energy bills from, include:

• Switching appliances off at the plug and never using the stand by button could save up to £30

• Washing laundry at 30? – washing powders these days really do work at this temperature and you could save yourself up to £10

• Making sure you only boil as much water in a kettle that you need could also save up to £10 – the kettle is one of the most energy guzzling appliances you will own

• Lowering your thermostat by a couple of degrees during the winter can make £60 worth of difference

• It may seem obvious but if the heating is on, make sure the windows are shut!

• Refrain from using a tumble dryer too often; invest in a decent clothes horse and save money.

• Again, this is just common sense but you could also save up to £10 off your energy bill by switching lights off when you leave a room

• Replacing normal light bulbs with energy saving light bulbs could make an annual energy saving of £40

• Insulation of walls, roof, loft, water tank and pipe and floor could save an average of £501

• Using energy saving recommended equipment such as a washing machine could save an average of £16.70

• Installing a brand new heating system could save up to £155

• Installing double glazing and draught proofing the house could save £150

Total saving =£982.70*

Commenting, Mr Wagner added: "There has been much controversy lately about how effective making small changes to your energy use can be in saving the planet. Today we face a serious challenge in saving ourselves from fuel poverty, and these small energy saving steps can make all the difference – if the average annual energy bill is now in excess of £1,200, people could easily knock hundreds off by being extra vigilant.

"Switching gas and electricity providers to a capped rate should still be at the top of the priority list for most households, Mr Wagner added, " offers a quick and easy energy comparison and switching service that could see you saving hundreds in minutes," he concluded.

Gas and electricity quotes