Money management in winter

A great big hello and welcome to this weeks article from Home Instead Peterborough. We have started to notice that the days are getting slightly longer, which starts to lift a lot of spirits up, however, we still have a way to go before we have those long summer days here. We have previously written some tips on what you can do to help with SAD if you are struggling, as we know it will be affecting a lot of people including the elderly in and around Peterborough too, you can check this article out here

With the longer, darker nights and colder weather, we do have to consider our electric and gas bills will have been increasing over the last few months and for the coming months too. Now may also be a good time to start planning for the next winter and having your home checked for its efficiency in terms of insulation etc. Particularly for our elderly loved ones too, to keep their bills down as they may be relying on limited funds to keep warm. So today, we will be offering some extra tips on how you and your elderly friends and family members can reduce their bills and even plan for next winter. If you have our home care support workers coming to visit your elderly loved ones in the Peterborough area, they may have already pointed out things like the below where heating efficiency can be improved.

Quick tips to help now

Keeping radiators clear of furniture so the warm air can circulate and not be absorbed by the furniture is important. A lot of people have furniture blocking at least one radiator and this is very inefficient for heating your home.
Keeping radiators clear of drying your washing has the same effect as above. Putting loads of socks or jumpers on your radiators is inefficient to heating your home. Try using an air dryer instead of clothes directly on your radiators. 
Closing your curtains in the evenings. This is to help minimise the heat loss through your windows. 
If you have long curtains, tuck them behind the radiator so the heat doesn’t get trapped behind them and then escape through your windows. Air circulation is key.
Do you have spare rooms that you don’t use? Keeping the radiators turned off in these rooms are a great, quick way to reduce your bills.

Get a home energy check

Some local AgeUK offices offer a home energy check if your elderly friend or family members hit certain criteria. They organise a handyperson to visit your homes will fit the appropriate equipment which includes

Draught excluders
Energy-saving light bulbs
Reflective radiator panels

You can find out more and see if this service is available in your area by clicking on this link here. Peterborough seems to be covered which is great news for our clients!

Our elderly loved ones can be particularly vulnerable with the cold weather and perhaps are worrying about finances for heating. We have previously written about the winter fuel allowance, that the older people in your life may be entitled too. You can read all about the winter fuel allowance here and even about fuel poverty and what help is available here.

We hope you have found this article useful, please do feel free to get in touch with us if you have article topics in mind you would like us to discuss. Also, do feel free to give us a call in regards to the home care support we offer in and around the Peterborough area on 01733 333342. Alternatively, you can email me directly on