Money saving tips 2024

Our finance tips for 2024

In 2024, as living costs continue to rise, it’s crucial to examine our money saving habits thoroughly.

For most bill payers, this includes your phone bills, broadband, energy efficiency, and subscriptions.

Aside from obvious money saving strategies, such as budgeting, we’ve highlighted a few less common hacks to help you save money.

Let’s explore some strategies to optimise money saving for each category:

Phone Expenses

With mobile phone ownership exceeding 90% and landline usage declining, it’s time to reassess our phone bills. Here are some tips to consider:

  • Check your contract status to see if you’re overpaying.
  • Explore options like switching providers or negotiating better deals.
  • Consider social tariffs for cheaper broadband if eligible.
  • Opt for SIM-only plans, especially if you own a handset.
  • If you still rely on your landline, bundle your services to save up to 34%.

Broadband Bills

A more complex tip which involves initial costs before money saving is transitioning to fibre broadband.

Overall, it offers better value in the long run, providing faster speeds when most needed.

This is especially true if you experience losses due to poor broadband. This includes not being able to work remotely, or having a smart home security hub that frequently drops out or disconnects.

To read more please visit our previous blog post.

Other ways to optimise your broadband expenses include:

  • Negotiating your broadband deal strategically, especially when your contract is ending or during promotional periods.
  • Research competitor offers and use them as leverage during negotiations.
  • Clearly express dissatisfaction with your current package and your willingness to switch providers if necessary. This can sometimes lead to compensatory money.
  • Highlight your loyalty as a long-term customer to inquire about loyalty discounts.
  • Utilize online tools and forums for additional support and guidance.

Energy Efficiency

Improving energy efficiency not only lowers utility bills but also reduces environmental impact. Here are some energy-saving tips:

  • Invest in energy-efficient appliances like LED light bulbs and smart thermostats.
  • Ensure proper home insulation to prevent heat loss.
  • Optimise heating and cooling by adjusting thermostat settings and installing programmable thermostats.
  • Adopt energy-saving habits in your daily life. This includes turning off lights and electronics when not in use.
  • Use your washing line or clothes maiden instead of a tumble drier.
  • Explore renewable energy sources like solar panels or wind turbines.

Subscriptions

Managing subscriptions efficiently can lead to significant savings. Here are some of our helpful tips:

  • Regularly review your subscriptions to assess their value.
  • Bundle services for discounts.
  • Negotiate better deals with subscription providers.
  • Take advantage of free trials to test services before committing.
  • Share subscription accounts with family or friends to split costs.
  • Opt for annual payments for additional discounts.
  • Keep track of renewal dates and use discounts or coupons to save money.
  • Downgrade plans if you’re not fully utilising higher-tier subscriptions.
  • Explore free or lower-cost alternatives to paid subscriptions.

By implementing these strategies, you can better manage your budget and achieve long-term financial stability in 2024 and beyond.

Which Expenses are Going up in 2024?

Unfortunately, annual inflation is common – and 2024 will be no exception.

We’ve covered the main household costs due to soar this year and advised on how to counteract them.

Council Tax

Council tax, a major monthly expense, typically increases in April.

While Scotland enjoys a freeze until April 2025, the rest of the UK awaits news.

Councils in England can hike taxes up to 5% annually, potentially adding £103 to the average bill.

Despite calls for fairer collection methods, missed payments can still lead to consequences.

Explore options like payment rescheduling, hardship relief, tax reduction, or challenging your property’s valuation.

TV Licence Fee

TV licence fees are set to rise to £169.50 in April, a £10.50 increase.

This is below the expected inflation-linked rise, offering some relief.

Renewing before April can lock in the current price.

Additionally, individuals over 75 receiving Pension Credit are eligible for a free licence.

Energy Bills

Energy bills may surge by up to 5% in January due to rising energy price caps.

Mitigate costs by ensuring accurate meter readings, questioning changes, and adopting energy-saving habits.

Mobile and Broadband

Mid-contract price hikes are common in mobile and broadband contracts, with some providers planning increases of over 8% in 2024.

Explore switching to a provider without mid-contract rises or negotiate with your current provider for a better deal.

Insurance Premiums

Home and car insurance premiums have soared, with the average quoted price rising significantly.

Shop around for better deals, consider annual policies, and compare ratings to find the best insurance options.

Mortgages

Mortgage rates have increased, driven by a freeze in the base rate.

Consider switching deals if nearing the end of a fixed term, or, seek advice from a mortgage broker to navigate your options effectively.

We recommend staying in the loop by checking out local money saving sites and news outlets.

Your suppliers also have a duty to inform you about any upcoming price hikes.

Cut your Household Bills With Switch Experts

Ready to find a new fast and affordable broadband provider?

In just a few clicks, we can help you see how much you could be saving on your broadband bills.

Simply search your postcode and browse our latest available deals.

 

eco friendly business blog ft image

Fostering an eco-friendly business

With UK businesses being collectively responsible for 18% of the country’s total carbon emissions, it’s understandable why so many brands are rushing to make a positive eco-friendly difference.

Not only will you be playing a significant role in caring for the planet, but there are a lot of benefits to implementing more eco-friendly business practices.

Simple, easy, and incredibly advantageous.

Below, our experts have explained why and how your business should be implementing green measures.

Why should I introduce eco-friendly business practices?

Whether you run a large business or an SME, eco-friendly habits will benefit you in a range of ways.

Companies that choose to invest in energy efficiency measures benefit from cost reductions, improved sustainability/productivity, and an overall better brand reception.

Did you know that 61% of people aged 22-35 would be willing to spend more with an eco-friendly business?

EON also found that 72% of people pay attention to whether or not a business acts in a climate-friendly way.

This might refer to your employees too.

Who wouldn’t be proud to represent an eco-friendly business?

Nurturing an eco friendly business environment

A little goes a long way, and your efforts are appreciated more than you realise.

What’s more, you will see your energy bills drop drastically when you follow our advice below, as you naturally start burning through less electricity.

We recommend taking the following steps to help you build an eco-friendly business environment.

  1. Firstly, Conduct an Energy Audit

Conducting a thorough energy audit will keep you informed and engaged.

This makes it easier to identify areas for improvement from the get-go.

Through your audit, you’re likely to find  more advice and guidance on implementing the behaviour of staff.

An energy audit can save businesses significant amounts of energy, money, and improve efficiency.

  1. Start Small by Repairing and Replacing Small Appliances

Implementing eco-friendly business measures such as LED lighting, insulation, and energy-efficient technologies can save companies thousands of pounds per year in energy costs.

For instance, replacing incandescent bulbs with LED lighting can provide energy savings of up to 70%.

Smart heating, or heating timers, could save you up to 30% per year.

Invest in these appliances once and you’ll quickly make the money back in how much you save on your bills.

  1. Next, Consider More Drastic Changes to Equipment and Energy Sources

This might be a bit more of a long-term overhaul project, but still a critical one.

If your workplace has a lot of computers, machinery or servers constantly plugged in, this will drain energy – but we understand that they can’t be turned off!

Look into energy-efficient computers, monitors, and printers, and consider power saving timer settings.

If you rely on servers, maybe it could also be time to look at moving to the Cloud.

You should also see if your business would be eligible for a solar panel grant.

  1. Go Paperless and Proud!

Paperless offices are much more common than you might think.

Going paperless is not just a trend; it’s a transformative shift that offers numerous benefits for businesses of all sizes.

Not only will you reduce your carbon footprint, but going paperless also helps you to save on costs and improve efficiency.

By digitizing documents, processes become streamlined, storage space is freed up, and the environmental impact is minimized.

With modern technology and secure cloud storage, making the transition is easier than ever.

  1. Educate Employees

Install signs around your workplace to remind staff to reuse, reduce and recycle.

For example, you could introduce a competition that motivates your employees.

Encouraging staff to turn off lights and equipment before leaving for the day, carpooling to work, and utilizing public transport are all great ways to promote energy efficiency.

Make a significant step in the right direction and start introducing some of our suggested practises today.

In conclusion, nurturing an eco-friendly business is a win-win situation.

Save on your other business bills

We’ve made it easy to save money and time when looking for a new deal on a range of business services.

From broadband to mobile, VoIP to waste management, we can help you score a new deal.

We have a whole team of business experts ready to help you switch and save hundreds on your bills every year.

Get in touch today and start searching new offers on any service you need.

household bills ft image

6 hacks to lower your bills

Managing household bills can be a real challenge, especially when they seem to keep climbing higher each month.

But fear not!

We’ve got your back with six ingenious household bill hacks that will help you save money without sacrificing comfort or convenience.

These simple yet effective strategies will empower you to take control of your expenses and free up some extra cash for the things that truly matter to you.

Let’s dive in and discover how you can make a significant difference in your monthly budget!

Why are household bills soaring in the UK?

Since 2020, prices have been rising nationwide. Although this may have been kickstarted by the pandemic in several ways, the war in Ukraine has also led to soaring inflation.

Staying up to date on market trends is more important than ever and can help you stay prepared for further price rises.

Our weekly shops, insurance, petrol, and energy bills are sky-high, so it’s understandable that you’re looking to cut back where you can.

Our top 5 expert tips for cutting household bills

We asked our experts to explain the top six most effective hacks for reducing your home bills.

Everyone can try at least one of these – so read on for more!

  1. Energy-Efficient Appliances: Cut Costs, Not Comfort

One of the most impactful ways to save on your household bills is by investing in energy-efficient appliances. These modern marvels consume less power while delivering the same level of performance.

From energy-saving LED bulbs to Energy Star-rated refrigerators and showerheads, these appliances will not only lower your electricity bill but also reduce your carbon footprint.

We say that’s a win-win for your wallet and the planet!

  1. Embrace the Power of Smart Thermostats

Heating costs can take a considerable chunk out of your budget.

Enter the era of smart thermostats – the ultimate household bill hack. These intelligent devices learn your preferences, adjust temperatures accordingly, and can be controlled remotely through your smartphone.

By optimizing your home’s climate, you’ll avoid energy waste and save big on your bills.

Plus, some energy providers even offer rebates for installing smart thermostats, giving you an extra incentive to make the switch.

This is also the case for solar panels, depending on whereabouts you live.

It’s worth investigating if you would be eligible for a government grant.

  1. Bundle Up and Save on TV, Internet, and Phone Services

If you’re still paying for TV, internet, and your landline phone separately, it’s time to bundle up and save!

Many providers offer attractive bundle packages that combine these services into one convenient, discounted bill.

Not only will you enjoy the convenience of a single monthly payment, but you’ll also benefit from significant savings compared to individual subscriptions.

As for your mobile, could you consider a SIM-only plan?

If you’re nearing the end of your contract, and you’re happy with the device, you should look into it.

See our blog explaining everything you need to know.

  1. Unplug to Save: Combat Phantom Energy Drain

Did you know that even when your electronic devices are turned off, they still draw power? Our experts call this “phantom energy drain”, and it contributes to unnecessary energy costs.

Combat this sneaky expense by unplugging “vampire” devices when they’re not in use.

You’ll be amazed at how much you can save just by being more mindful of your off switches!

  1. Save on the Splash and Save up Your Cash

We all love a hot bubbly bath from time to time, but showering is much more efficient.

Even by just swapping to showers and having one bath per week, you can save tens of litres per month.

Putting your clothes on a slightly cooler wash of 30 degrees also saves you money every month, without decreasing the effectiveness of your washing powder.

  1. Don’t be Afraid to Switch, Shop Around and Haggle

When it comes to your bills, switching is your secret weapon. Many providers offer low priced and unbeatable introductory periods, or discounts for new customers.

We’re here to find these deals for you. Small changes make a big difference to your bills, and when it comes to broadband, you might be able to save AND upgrade!

In essence, our team will do all the haggling for you and find you a personalised deal within your budget.

Could you be Overpaying on Your Bills?

Switching your broadband or mobile deal could potentially save you hundreds per year. If you haven’t switched plans in a while, there’s a very real chance you could be overpaying.

Many suppliers will automatically enrol you onto a new standard tariff plan once your initial contract ends.

The catch? You’ll likely be paying more per month – and not necessarily for a better service in return.

We’ll find out how much you could be saving in no time, whilst also ensuring that your new contracts are well suited to your home.

Switch and Save Now

We can help you cut back on your expensive contracts. Whether it’s your mobile, or your home broadband, we can find you a personalised deal today.

Get started with a few clicks and you’ll be surprised by the savings!

 

Business Water Bills

Repost from MoneyExpert.

Could you be overpaying on business water?

Since April 2017, the business water market in England was deregulated, fully opening up to competition.

From then on, businesses have been able to choose which company they want to buy their retail water services from.

This includes a variety of services, like billing, account management, meter reading and water efficiency advice.

Ofwat closely monitor and regulate the market to protect business customers, for example by setting limits on the price that customers pay if they don’t switch or renegotiate a new deal.

How does the business water market work?

The market works much like other open utility markers, like for gas and electricity. Retail suppliers buy wholesale services, such as the physical supply of water or the removal of wastewater. They then offer packages to sell to their business customers.

Who are the market’s key players?

  • Retail suppliers – these suppliers compete for your custom.
  • Wholesalers – the companies which own and operate the network of water pipes, mains and treatment works. They sell water and wastewater services to the retail suppliers.
  • Open Water – this is the government’s programme which aims to open the new business retail market. Open Water is led by three organisations – Ofwat, Defra and MOSL. The programme shares information about the market with business customers.
  • Defra – the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.
  • Ofwat – they are the economic regulatory body for the water sector. They are also the market’s licensing authority. In order to offer water services to customers, suppliers must first be awarded a license by Ofwat.
  • MOSL – the Market Operator, who makes sure that the market functions simply and efficiently. They facilitate the transfer of customer information when said customer switches retail supplier.
  • WICS – the Water Industry Commission for Scotland is responsible for regulating the water market in Scotland.

Changing water supplier – what are the benefits?

Switching to a new water supplier comes with a host of benefits for your business. For example:

  • You can request consolidated and electronic billing, making your water bill easier to pay back. What’s more, you can ask for more frequent bills, allowing you to monitor more closely your business’ water usage.
  • You can also obtain consumption and billing data to whatever standard you would prefer, including online self-service.
  • You may also receive better customer service, as you would have the choice of competing your supply, rather than receiving customer service just from your local supplier.
  • You could save money by choosing a more cost-effective supplier.
  • If you have multiple sites in different areas, you could streamline your bills by choosing one supplier for all sites.

How to switch

The process of switching water suppliers is easy and simple, so it’s well worth doing if you want to take advantage of all of the benefits that come with it.

  1. Find the right supplier for your business: Write down everything that you’re looking for in a water supplier, from good customer service to getting help with water efficiency. You should then look through Open Water’s online catalogue of providers to find one that meets all your requirements.
  2. Get a quote: when you’ve found your ideal supplier, make sure their price is also ideal for your business. Have your Supply Point Identification (SPID) number on hand. You can find this on your latest water bill.
  3. Sign up: sign an agreement with your new supplier. Normally, they will contact your current supplier to let them know that you’re moving. When switching supplier, you will need the following essential information on hand:
    • Your organisation’s name
    • Your business’ address, including postcode
    • Your annual water consumption
    • Contact name at the premises
    • Contact phone number for your premises
    • Desirable but not essential is your unique property reference number, demand profile and annual spend

How to increase your business’ water efficiency

Water is a precious and finite source – less than 3% of earth’s water is fresh, and only 0.3% is readily accessible. In the UK, businesses account for 25% of water usage, so it’s important that every business is conscious of how much they’re using.

Benefits of water efficiency

  • Saving water can cut down your energy bill, as the two are closely linked. For example, when you run a tap, energy is used to pump the water.
  • You can save other resources too. It takes five litres of water to run a lightbulb or one plastic bottle. Reducing your business’ water consumption can therefore help you save in other areas.
  • The less water you use, the bigger savings you will see on your bill. Even the smallest changes can have a tangible impact.

Understanding your current water usage

Before you can come up with a plan to become more water efficient, you need to understand your current consumption. This can help you to understand how and where water is being used on your premises, allowing you to target key areas.

  • Take a meter reading: take these readings frequently over one month, at the beginning and end of each day.
  • Look at your previous bills: if you notice that your consumption varies a lot without there being any obvious reason for this, then leaking of faulty equipment might be the culprit, or your bill might be inaccurate. If this is the case, then further water audit or an investigation may be required.

Implementing water saving devices

Taps:

  • Automatic taps: these can save you up to 70% compared to manual taps. This is because a lot of water is wasted when a tap is turned off and on manually. With an automatic sensor, it takes 0.5 seconds to turn a tap off and on. These taps also remove the problem of drips.
  • Spray taps: these can also save you up to 70%. With spray taps, water is forced through small hole filters, creating a spray. This decreases the amount of water that runs through your taps.

Toilets:

  • Dropping cistern water: this is often done by placing a brick in the cistern and can save up to 5,000 litres of water per year.
  • Dual flush technology: this can save up to 70% of water.
  • Passive infrared sensor: this can save up to 75% of water involved in flushing urinals.

Other things to think about:

  • Banning bottled water: by replacing bottled water with water fountains, you can reduce your water costs by as much as 50%
  • Rainwater storage tanks: you can save money by capturing and recycling rainwater. We get plenty of it in the UK, so why not exploit it? Storage tanks range in size, so you can get the right one to suit your business premises.

 

Ready to save on your business bills?

We search offers with your best interests in mind.

Browse the latest business water deals in seconds and see how much you could save.

Deals are found instantly and always tailored to your business and budget.

Whether you’re looking to save on VoIP, card payments, or more, we can help you find a better deal today.

Energy business bills

Re-posted from Edit.net.

Could you see a reduction in your business energy bills?

Government measures to combat spiralling energy costs across non-domestic sectors have now come into force, with the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) confirming that businesses could see costs slashed by more than half for the next six months.

“Halve the costs of electricity for businesses”

The former Business Secretary Jacob Rees-Mogg unveiled the Energy Bill Relief Scheme back in September, in a bid to more than halve the projected costs of electricity and gas for businesses, charities and public sector organisations.

Equivalent to support through the Energy Price Guarantee, it provides a discount on wholesale gas and electricity prices for all eligible non-domestic customers who were facing soaring energy costs.

How will the new pricing work?

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) claims that the Government has introduced a new support price of £211 per MWh for electricity, compared to a projected price of £600 per MWh and  £75 per MWh for gas compared to a projected winter price of £180 per MWh.

The new pricing, which will be applied in pence per kilowatt hour (p/kWh), is available to all non-domestic energy contracts, including businesses, voluntary sector organisations, such as charities and public sector organisations such as schools, hospitals and care homes.

Have you already noticed some cost savings?

The changes were due to come into effect on 1 October, but savings applied to October bills are usually received in November, so businesses will now be able to receive the benefits.

BEIS has confirmed that the scheme will run for an initial six months.

Business and Energy Secretary Grant Shapps said: “Seeing the savings from our energy support in bills will give businesses across the country peace of mind at a time when they are facing increased pressure.

“By shielding them from a massive increase in energy costs we’re protecting jobs and livelihoods, just as we did throughout the pandemic – ensuring UK businesses do not fall at the hands of Putin.”

The Government is reviewing what will happen to the scheme after April 2023, and will target support for businesses most affected by high energy prices. BEIS has also issued new guidance on the scheme.

Many green economy representatives have asked why the relief scheme has not been paired with other measures, like a new national home insulation scheme.

Others have urged politicians to couple plans for dealing with the cost-of-living crisis with plans for climate action.

Ready to reduce your other bills?

We’ve compared business broadband, VoIP, water bills, and mobile suppliers in one place.

Regardless of your industry, or business size, we bet we could save you some money.

Find out for free if you’re on the best business plan.

Business Water Bills

Our Rundown of Business Water Bills

The cost of business water can quickly add up when you’re misinformed.

However, all businesses need running water.

In fact, research from Energy Costcutters shows that 67% of businesses across the UK and Scotland have been overcharged on their business water bills.

Here’s what you need to know.

It’s key to note that your business water bill varies depending on your area and your local utility company charges.

Consequently, there are over 20 different licensed water suppliers for UK businesses, but their charges are regulated and fortunately, predictable.

So how does it all work?

In simple terms, your bill is split up by the water coming and coming out of your business premises.

These are known as Water charges, and Wastewater charges.

Water charges

This cost relates to the supply of fresh water coming into your business premises and depends on how much water you and your team use.

Wastewater charges

These charges are for the removal of used water going out of your business premises into the local sewer system.

Being connected to the sewer system means that these charges apply to you.

Do you have a water meter?

You should submit your meter reading at least once a year (if not more), to avoid being charged for an estimated consumption.

Your bill will be an ‘estimated’, ‘read’ or ‘actual’ consumption.

The two charges your bill will be made up of are:

  • A fixed charge. Based on the type of water meter you have, and this covers both the readings and water meter maintenance.
  • A variable charge. Based on your overall business water usage.

No meter?

In this case, you’ll be paying a fixed price.

You’ll also be paying a charge relatable to the valuable of your business premises.

A lot of our customers find using a water meter offers more accurate and better-priced bills.

If you’re a small business, you’ll likely find that your water bill is similar to that of a household.

Large business owners should look for an alternative tariff better suited to high demand.

Our advice on reducing your business water bill

  1. Encourage all staff to get on board with saving water. Run fun competitions, ask for creative tips and urge staff to report any leaks
  2. Invest in efficiency. Geysers and water-efficient taps (or automatic taps) are worth buying to help you save in the long run. Dual-flush toilets are also a valuable investment.
  3. Leave notes around the office. Dishwasher in the breakroom? Leave a sign instructing staff to only turn it on when it’s full
  4. Get a water meter installed.

Looking to save more on your other business bills?

We compare business broadband, VoIP and mobile suppliers in one place.

It’s our mission to upgrade you whilst also saving you money.

Join countless other business owners in saving thousands today.

10 Downing Street. MOD 45155532

We’re all feeling the strain of sky rocketing bills right now due to the energy crisis.

Further price rises and supplier uncertainty have been at the forefront of everyone’s mind.

Since Liz Truss became the new Prime Minister, the nation has been waiting with bated breath to hear her plans for tackling the energy crisis.

Luckily for us, we haven’t had to wait too long.

What is the energy crisis?

Gas and electricity prices have risen to unprecedented highs this year.

Since 2021, we’ve seen supply issues spiralling across the industry, leading to a record number of suppliers going bust.

The situation has only been made more dire following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, further limiting Russia’s supply of gas to Europe.

Ofcom even urged the new Prime Minister to act “decisively and urgently” in helping UK households tackle the record-high cost of living.

So, on Thursday, 8th September, new PM Liz Truss addressed the nation.

We’ve explained below our breakdown and what to expect in coming weeks.

Major changes for October 2022

“It will curb inflation and boost growth”

Plans have changed – and a price freeze is “guaranteed”.

Instead of an eye-watering 80% increase to the price cap (which would’ve left the average homeowner paying over £3,500 a year), bills have been frozen at £2,500.

This has been introduced as the “Energy Price Guarantee” and it’s set to stay in place for two years.

Our Winter advice

This doesn’t mean every household will face a yearly bill of £2,500 – this is just the cap on what firms can charge customers.

We understand this new price freeze still isn’t welcome news to everyone, but it does mean you can take steps to lower your usage and your bill.

Our advice:

  • Take a meter reading. If possible, arrange for a meter reading to be taken as soon as possible – ideally on September 30th! Doing this before the changes come into effect means you won’t be charged for units you’ve not used
  • Invest in energy-efficient appliances. Investing now in upgrades like LED/Smart bulbs, new windows, or even a boiler servicing, will save you in the long run
  • Speak to your energy supplier. If you’re worried about your payments, or think you’re at risk of falling behind, speak to your energy supplier directly
  • Look to reduce your other bills. We’ve got every broadband and mobile deal on the market in one place for you.

We’ve helped countless other bill payers like you save hundreds of pounds per year by switching.

Start comparing for cheaper deals today.