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Cost of Living – some helpful tips to spend less around the home

Moneymagpie Team 19th Dec 2022 No Comments

Reading Time: 4 minutes

The cost of living crisis in the England right now is a scary and confusing time for many of us. If you’ve been affected by the cost of living crisis, we’re sure you’ve seen loads of things about getting tax cuts, cancelling your favourite subscriptions, reducing your heating bills in this way or that way, and a great deal more.

While all of this can save you money, there are other more practical ways of saving a few pounds each month without missing your favourite shows and jumping through hoops. Here are just some of the tips that have helped me save some money since the cost of living crisis began.

Make your own cleaning products

Buying different cleaning products for each room of the home and different situations can cost quite an eye-watering amount. Granted, it’s far less than your mortgage payments, but when you can make your own cleaning products really easily, is there any need to buy 10 different cleaning products?

All you need is bicarbonate of soda, vinegar and water. Different combinations of these three simple and cheap ingredients are enough to clean your entire home. That includes limescale, mould and more.

Equal parts water and vinegar in a spray bottle is a great general-purpose cleaner. Add in a teaspoon or two of the bicarb, and you have a slightly more abrasive cleaner, ideal for stubborn stains. And the bicarbonate of soda can also be used to get odours out of carpets too.

Useful article: Tips to get rid of damp and mould

Fill the washing machine, tumble dryer and dishwasher

We’ve all put our outfits in the dryer to warm them up on a cold day, and no one is blaming you for that! However, to save money on energy bills, make sure to only use your dishwasher, washing machine and tumble dryer when they have full loads.

These are some of the most costly appliances to run, so you might as well make every penny count! A dishwasher will cost around 68p per cycle. A washing machine costs around £1.09 an hour to run. And a tumble dryer costs about £1.53 to run for an hour!

This may not sound like that much. However, if you’re doing three or four loads instead of just one, that costs over a fiver in some cases! So, fill up your appliances before you use them, and maybe start washing up or drying clothes in a different way.

Useful article: How to clean your washing machine

Use your heating to dry your clothes

This is a fantastic money-saving hack that I saw on TikTok, of all places. Place your clothes airer near a radiator, and then use a bed sheet to cover both the airer and the radiator. The radiator will circulate heat through your clothes (and it will still heat the room), and it will dry your clothes quickly.

This clothes-drying hack works really well. Granted, it does look like you’ve built your clothes a little fort to dry in, but if you have guests coming over, maybe move the clothes fort into a different room.

Use your heating on eco-mode

For ages, I didn’t realise that my boiler had an eco-mode. It’s not like many of us spend all day staring at our boilers. If your boiler is brand new or a few years old, it likely has an eco-mode, and it is well worth putting this on.

The eco-mode on a boiler basically stops it from pre-heating your hot water. So, when you turn the hot tap on, the boiler will then heat up the water. The rest of the heating system stays the same. So you can enjoy the heat without wasting any energy.

Bleed your radiators

While we’re on the topic of heating, it is well worth bleeding your radiators. Radiators working correctly is something that many of us overlook, but preparing your radiators for the cold weather is a must for making the most out of your heating.

Bleeding radiators is nice and easy, and there are loads of videos showing you how to do it. However, in a nutshell, you need to:

Turn off your heating.

Use a radiator key to turn the value at the top of your radiator. You should hear a hissing sound. This is air escaping. Use a cloth to catch any water that comes out.
Once the hissing stops, retighten the value
Turn your heating back on.
Check the pressure on your boiler. If the pressure has dropped, you may need to use the tap on your boiler to increase it.
Check your radiators. If they are heating up evenly, you’ve just successfully bled your radiators.

Close your curtains

Lastly, closing your curtains locks heat in a room for much longer. Windows are one of the biggest causes of heat loss in a home, no matter whether you have double or even triple-glazed windows, they are still causing loads of heat to escape your home.

By simply closing the curtains, you are stopping some of the heat from hitting the window and escaping. You’ll be surprised how well this works to trap heat in your home for a little while longer.

DisclaimerMoneyMagpie is not a licensed financial advisor and therefore information found here including opinions, commentary, suggestions or strategies are for informational, entertainment or educational purposes only. This should not be considered as financial advice. Anyone thinking of investing should conduct their own due diligence. 


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Jasmine Birtles

Your money-making expert. Financial journalist, TV and radio personality.

Jasmine Birtles

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