Insulate yourself from rising energy prices

The current energy price rise isn’t a one-off. We’ve not had a particularly cold winter; it doesn’t seem like supplies from Russia will be particularly reliable any time soon; North Sea gas is not discounted just because it’s in UK waters; and the UK is facing increasing competition for supplies from increasing demand around the world.

Here are some ideas for weathering the initial price hike, and protecting your home against future uncertainty.

Support

If you are on a lower income and get certain qualifying benefits you may be able to get financial support through the Warm Home Discount Scheme, older people can access the Winter Fuel Payment, and suppliers help some customers with their energy debt.

Local advice and potential support is available through Nottinghamshire County Council’s Warm Homes Hub, and the Healthy Housing Scheme 

In terms of accessing the short-term energy rebate, you can challenge your Council Tax band here (with a fair bit of homework required).

On the other hand, if you get the Winter Fuel Payment but aren’t feeling the financial pressure facing others, perhaps consider donating to a food bank or other charity supporting low income households.

Tenants

If you rent your home from a private landlord and it is EPC Band F or G, they need to put in energy saving measures such as more efficient heating or insulation measures. If they don’t, complain to NSDC. You can check your EPC rating here

All landlords (private, housing associations and councils) are responsible for major repairs and making sure it doesn’t get too cold (among other measures of whether a home is fit to rent out). This guide is helpful, or contact Citizens Advice.

Home-owners

If you want to reduce running costs and improve comfort in your home, insulate, insulate, insulate. To be more precise, draughtproof, insulate and ventilate. Keep the warm air in, and keep it fresh through controlled ventilation rather than draughts. Find out more about the options on the ‘Your Home’ tab here

Planning advice is needed for some measures, particularly in conservation areas. As an aside our main concern in the current consultation on conservation areas is raising the concern that this could prevent vital energy saving measures such as better windows and doors. There are some excellent ‘heritage’ glazing options now that we would like to see actively permitted and promoted in the local area. 

Let us know if you are interested in installing solar PV, battery storage or other measures to manage and reduce your energy use. We are currently revewing the impact of our Solar Streets project with a view to a further round in the next few months. Reducing demand is good for the individual home’s bills but also has a wider benefit if enough of us take action, as high demand is driving high prices.

Everyone

Use heating controls to make sure you only use energy when and where you need it. Not all controls are intuitive, but worth persevering with.

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