With a little investment, you could be saving hundreds of pounds on your energy bills year on year.
If you have up to £250 to invest in making your home more energy-efficient and more comfortable to live in, here are some of the best ways to do it.
1. Insulate your loft
Cost : Around £150 if you do it yourself, or you could be eligible for a grant to help you cover the costs. If you're a landlord, you may be eligible for the Landlord's energy-saving Allowance (LESA) which is an allowance against the income tax of private landlords. It offers an allowance of £1500 per property for capital expenditure on loft and cavity wall insulation in rented accommodation.
A lot of a house's heat is lost through the roof, because heat rises. If your loft isn't insulated yet, investing in loft insulation could save you £128 per year (on average) on your energy bills. If your loft has been insulated but it was a long time ago, or the insulation is less than 270mm in thickness, then an investment of £100 could save you around £40 per year.
2. Get your cavity walls insulated
Cost: £250 for professional installation with a grant, or you could be eligible for a full grant. If you are a landlord you may be eligible for the LESA (see above).
About a third of all heat lost in an un-insulated home is through the walls. This means that cavity wall insulation is one of the best ways to significantly reduce the amount of energy you use. Cavity wall insulation could save you around £110 a year on your fuel bills.
3. Add floor insulation
Cost: In order to make significant savings, you needn't spend any more than £100 on do-it-yourself measures to insulate your floors.
If you have a raised timber floor, this can be insulated by lifting the floorboards and laying mineral wool insulation. Insulating underneath floorboards and using silicon sealant to fill gaps between floorboards and skirting boards will save you around £50 a year.
4. Insulate your pipes and tanks
Cost: Under £100 for do-it-yourself materials
Both tank and pipe insulation keep your water hotter for longer by reducing the amount of heat that escapes. Adequately insulating your pipes can also stop pipes freezing in winter.
Cost: Under £100 for do-it-yourself materials.
Using draught strips or excluders to draught-proof around your doors and window frames can save around £25 a year on heating bills. You might also want to install a draught excluder over your letterbox.