Typically, whilst in uni or shared accommodation, everyone within that household will take it in turns to do their own daily tasks such as cleaning or cooking. Although it can be more convenient to do these things on your own terms, coordinating them between the whole house can hugely impact your energy saving in a positive way, especially if you’re a large household.
As you’ll no doubt be aware, energy prices have increased significantly over the last 12 months, so being conscious of your habits can help avoid a hefty bill.
How can you monitor your usage?
Whether your property is inclusive or exclusive of bills, it is a good idea to keep track of your monthly or bi-weekly usage. You can do this by writing down the meter readings and keeping them in a shared spreadsheet or notebook. You can then subtract the two readings to see how many units of energy you’ve used. Multiply the number of units used by the unit price above, plus the standing charge multiplied by the number of days in the period – will give you an approximate guide. It’s typical for houses to use more energy in the colder months but then use a lot less as we move into Spring / Summer. Example: 65 units used X 34p/kWh = £22.10. 28 Days between readings x 46.4p/day = £12.99. Total £22.10 + £12.99 = £35.09 electric.
If you pay your bills directly to the supplier, we recommend you send them regular readings. If you are an bills-inclusive household, your agreement will have a fair usage policy which could mean you are liable for extra charges at the end of your tenancy if you exceed the usage.
What can you do to lower your usage?
Cook Together - Cooking your meals at the same time or all of you having the same meal will reduce the amount of time the hob/oven is on per day. It also makes dinner time more of a social event.
Utilise the Houe Appliances - Rather than each of you doing your washing separately, share the drum. How many times have you ran a cycle and the machine is only half full? If all of you do this, you’ll be using the machine double the amount of time it need be. Also wash clothes at a low temperature where possible (30C).
If you have a tumble dryer or dishwasher in your property, try to avoid using them all together as they are not essential appliances. Instead, dry your clothes outside (weather permitting) or in a well-ventilated room and wash dishes in the sink bowl.
A microwave is cheaper to run than an oven, so opt for the microwave if your food has the option to be cooked this way.
Layer Up - Before you turn the heating on, try layering up. A thick jumper, blanket and a cup of tea can make all the difference.
Lower the Thermostat - Reducing heating by as little as 1C can cut bills annual by up to 10%.
Reduce your Shower Time - We all love a long shower, but on average a 10-minute showers costs around £1 and changes are your exceeding that time. Many of us will also have 2 showers in the day, times that by 5+ people in the house and that’s £10+ on showers in just 1 day.
Charging your Devices - Try charging your devices whilst your out in places like coffee shops or even uni and avoid keeping them plugged in constantly when at home.
Much of the advice is common sense and the cumulative effect of everyone making small changes can make a huge difference to your overall usage. If your unsure of the location of your meters or thermostat, or have any questions regarding your boiler, contact us and we will be happy to assist you.
Dafydd Hardy Student Lettings – 01248 35 35 44 – firstname.lastname@example.org