This winter there are a range of actions that people can take to make their energy bills more affordable.
Bedford Borough Council is issuing advice to help householders through the colder months including making the home more energy efficient, switching to a cheaper energy provider and exploring discount and financial assistance options.
The Citizen’s Advice Bureau estimates that changing energy providers could save customers hundreds of pounds on annual energy bills if they have never switched.
To find out if you could get a better deal all you need is your postcode as well as details of your supplier, current tariff and annual energy consumption; all of which should be on your latest bill. For more information and helpful guides on how to change energy tariff and reduce energy bills, visit www.bedford.gov.uk/reducingenergybills.
The council’s Safe, Healthy and Well leaflet also offers important advice on how to reduce energy bills and keep warm. It directs readers to the range of services and help available; including schemes offering insulation, heating and safety improvements, pension and benefits advice, plus details about keeping healthy during the cold winter months.
To view a copy of the leaflet visit www.bedford.gov.uk/safehealthywell or pick up a copy from your local Bedford Borough library or the council’s Customer Service Centre in Horne Lane.
Public Health England offers the following advice:
>If you are over 65 or have a health problem, heat your home to at least 18°C to keep warm.
>Stay tuned into the weather forecast and ensure you are stocked with food and medications in advance.
>Put on several warm, light layers of clothing which will keep you warmer than one thick layer. Have hot drinks, use a hot water bottle and if you’re sitting down, put a blanket over you.
>Make sure you have a list of emergency numbers if you need to call for assistance or advice during cold weather.
>If you are worried about meeting your heating costs, contact the independent Home Heat Helpline on 0800 33 66 99 for advice on bills and energy efficiency.
For free and impartial advice on how to save energy in the home including information on the Green Deal and the Energy Companies Obligation, residents can contact the Energy Saving Advice Service on 0300 123 1234.