Stay warm this winter, get involved in Big energy saving week.

Energy is an important features in everyday life and accessing it cheaply, getting support where needed and saving it where possible can have a massive impact on consumers' ability to manage their energy usage and cost.

Suppliers and Government offer a lot of help to consumers to make homes more efficient and reduce the amount they spend on energy. The main schemes are the Green Deal, Nest and ECO, and HEEPS in Scotland. Specialist support for vulnerable consumers is also available from suppliers through the Warm Home Discount Scheme, Cold Weather Payments and the Priority Services Register.

Big Energy saving week is a national campaign to help people cut their fuel bills and get all the financial support they are entitled to and is a joint project between Citizens Advice, Government, energy suppliers, Energy Saving Trust, ACRE ,  Age UK and other voluntary and charitable organisations.

Tips and advice to help you stay warm this winter.

Check - Switch - Insulate

Check

Contact your energy supplier to check you are on the best tariff and payment method for your circumstances, or if they can offer you any discounts to cut your bills.

Contact your local Citizens Advice Bureau to check you are not missing out on any benefits or tax credits that could boost your income.

Switch

Visit an accredited switching website to see if you could get your energy cheaper elsewhere. Shopping around for your energy supplier could save you as much as £200 if you have never switched before.

If you use heating oil as your main fuel, see if there are any local oil buying clubs you can join. If not, you might want to start your own.

Insulate

If you're worried about how much money you're spending to heat and light your home, or just want to spend less, there are some simple steps you can take to make your home more energy efficient.

Keep in the heat by insulating the cavity walls and the loft of your home - you could save up to £320 per year. Most suppliers are giving away free or discounted insulation and other energy efficiency measures so ask if you're eligible.

The facts:

  • Calls to the Citizens Advice consumer service doubled in the period immediately following supplier price increase announcements this winter.
  • Up to £20billion in benefits went unclaimed in the UK in 2011 - that's enough money to pay the fuel bills of nearly 16 million homes
  • Many people stay on the same tariff or with the same energy supplier for years, without realising they could be getting a better deal elsewhere. They could be saving up to £200 a year, particularly if they have never switched before.
  • The Energy Saving Trust estimates that the average home in the UK wasted £280 last year, simply by not being energy efficient.

Find out more about Big Energy saving week, as well as further information available on schemes and eligibility criteria by calling the Energy Saving Advice Service on 0300 123 1234 in England and Wales. In Scotland contact Home Energy Scotland on 0808 808 2282.

Our guest blogs do not represent the views of the Met Office and we accept no responsibility for the content of external sites.

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