Energy Price Cap announcement: Watch Martin Lewis explain what it means for your electricity and gas bills this winter

How to live without heating - save £000s

edited 24 February 2022 at 4:10PM in Energy
777 replies 76.8K views


  • CoffeekupCoffeekup Forumite
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    We're probably spending £150/month heating the house at the moment, I'd say my life would be much more than £5 per day more miserable if I had to spend my days in some kind of mobile survival bag.
    I've cut back on my usage this winter compared to previous years. I would normally start tweaking with hearing on and off around October time.
    This season with prices going up I wanted to see if I could cut back and by how far and learn what it would save me in fuel and emissions.

    In a nutshell by the time my fix rate finishes I'll have reduced my gas usage by around 45% and electric by around 25% on my previous years average usages. I was looking at a total bill for the year of £825, it'll actually come in at around £580 saving me £245.
    I've been no less miserable and I feel better that I saved some money and saved 850kg of CO2 from being released in to our atmosphere.

    How does this look if I took on tarriff around the cost of April's price cap? 
    On previous year's usages I'll be looking at around £120 a month or £1450 a year, now if i use the same energy next period as this period I'll be paying £80 a month or £970 a year, a £580 saving.

    But what about if rewind and I cut back my usage years ago on cheaper tarrifs when I was paying £55 a month for 4-5 years? I would have saved £18 a month or £210 a year.

    Starting to look more appealing to pay attention to what your usage is.
  • HertsLadHertsLad Forumite
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    100 Posts First Anniversary Name Dropper
    Fliss_M said:

    I think you'll find you are being met with hostility because you initial message implies that rather then helping people heat their homes, the government/charities etc should be advising people how to stay warm without heating. Which isn't the point. No one should have to choose. And many can't. I've 4 children, one being 11 months. I can't have an unheated home. Those with disabilities, illness as has been demonstrated, can not look at your option. 

    I'd also add, who's paying for all these clothes? One person, ok not too bad. A family of 6? When 4 members are permanently outgrowing those clothes? That's not cost effective. 

    I live in a modern home (1997) and we get mould in 1 room still because 3 sides are cold walls and it's the bathroom so lots of steam from cleaning 6 people. I'd hate to think without heating. 

    If you'd started out offering it as something you've tried that works for you then maybe people would have been more receptive. But you've started out with the implication that those paying for heating are mugs and all you need are layers. As a species, we've spread over the globe BECAUSE we've perfected heat to cope in low temperatures. Otherwise we'd still all live in a warm strip round the middle. Not a cold, damp, wet island

    I know I wouldn't last long as a politician because if I used slightly the wrong words or emphasis, the criticism would be even worse than on this thread. I wouldn't suggest for a moment that you or anyone with children could try living without heating, even though there was a Daily Mail article c2013 where a family tried and gave up after a few days.

    As I said before the cost of the clothes is relatively low, especially when compared to heating costs of anything like £1800 per year. So it is highly cost effective. 

    Maybe early settlers in the UK needed fire and heating to keep warm but with modern clothing and perhaps some global warming, I have found heating is not justified.

  • edited 11 February 2022 at 10:24AM
    GingerTimGingerTim Forumite
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    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Name Dropper Combo Breaker
    edited 11 February 2022 at 10:24AM
    What are you spending this massive saving on your heating on? I'd want quite the return on that sort of existence.
  • HertsLadHertsLad Forumite
    226 Posts
    100 Posts First Anniversary Name Dropper
    GingerTim said:
    What are you spending this massive saving on your heating on? I'd want quite the return on that sort of existence.
    It's not really like that is it? I mean nobody has been handing me £1000 or more per year. I have, however, realised that the cost of a ski holiday is about the same and I know which I'd sooner be doing. Either staying warm by heating all the air in my house but with £1500 less (from now on) to go skiing, or by staying equally warm by wearing a few extra clothes and being more easily able to afford a holiday. Plus, the lessons I have learned in my house mean I no longer get as cold as used to happen, while on the slopes. I look back and think I was ignorant or stupid more than 11 years ago, not to realise I should have been wearing more, especially on my legs, while skiing. My legs were never cold. My hands were sometimes cold, and insufficient leg insulation was the reason.
  • MWTMWT Forumite
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    warby68 said:
    I think its a shame that the very useful advice on how to layer up comfortably at reasonable cost in a way that doesn't mean being under blankets on a sofa is being lost because of 'wording'.

    There are many examples of extreme frugality that don't get negative pile ons but OP's initial wording triggered a nerve because of the one size fits all suggestion. OP has acknowledged that tactlessness.

    Agreed, there is no 'one size fits all' solution, everyone has different tolerances and assets available to exploit, just have to figure out what works for each of us and those occupying the same space.
    My winter experiment has been solar powered crypto mining, which delivers both heat and income, again, very much not a solution for everyone.

  • AstriaAstria Forumite
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    1,000 Posts First Anniversary Name Dropper
    I guess in these kinds of temperatures mentioned above that a fridge is not really required, but in some cases you would still need a freezer, and will a freezer actually work properly when the ambient air is 2c ?
    Also, surely to shower or bathe you need to remove those 15 layers of clothing?

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