12 Tips for Staying Warm this Winter Without Blowing the Budget
Easter is in the rear-view mirror, the summer holidays seem a distant memory and long-gone are the days of sun-soaked bliss. It’s darker in the mornings, duller at night and the overall outlook is downright dreary. Winter is well and truly on our doorstep. And we haven’t even touched on the ever-present chilly bite in the air. Now is the time to rug-up, dust off your winter woolies and grab a hot cup of Earl Gray. Brace yourselves, because the next couple of months are not going to be flash. So, in anticipation of single-digit temperatures and the cooler period ahead we provide a guide to stay warm in your home this winter, without blowing the budget.
1. Start your day right
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, right? Even more so in winter. So start the day with a hearty warm breakfast giving you the boost you need to take on the challenges of the day ahead.
2. Switch your energy provider
Changing your energy providers can slash your winter electricity/gas bills by considerable margins. Saving you big time. To find the best electricity and gas deals in your neighbourhood check out https://www.powerswitch.org.nz/
3. Double-glazed windows
Double glazed windows is now the norm and compulsory for most new homes. Implemented in 2008, the changes to the Building Code have encouraged many homeowners to replace existing windows with double glazing.
Flannel sheets on your bed are a must in winter – even ahead of using an electric blanket. This is a cost-effective means of staying warm without racking up the electricity bill. Instead of an electric blanket, perhaps even couple the flannel sheets with a hot water bottle or a wheat bag as a cheaper alternative to the electric blanket/
5. Dress smarter
Goes without saying really but wrap-up and layer-up throughout winter. Wear a hat, a waterproof coat, woollen sweaters, gloves, thick socks, a scarf, thermals. Whatever it takes to brace yourself for the conditions at hand.
6. Upgrade & Update
Chances are if the devices you are using are ancient they will have a large energy outlay. It may be wise to invest in a new, modern, more energy-efficient model. Don’t have the budget for an upgrade right now? Apply for a loan to upgrade your heating systems and survive the winter
7. Heating Options
Heat Pumps, Wood Burners and Pellet Burners are great heat producers and are cheaper to run than high-energy consuming fan heaters. If you have plug-in heaters perhaps aim to minimise their use. They are far cheaper to buy initially but if you use them for prolonged periods this can be costly. Utilise the thermostat option or use sparingly.
8. Use timers and technology to your advantage;
Modern heating appliances have timers, or better yet can be operated remotely via smartphone apps. Utilise this. Ensure your heating devices are only in operation when absolutely necessary. Time it so heating starts 30min before you get out of bed in the morning or likewise 30min before you get home at night.
9. Get Active
Winter is often a time where outdoor activity is neglected and the exercise programme is parked. Make going to the gym a priority and a routine habit throughout winter. Or take up yoga, pilates or any programme at home to warm yourself up. You will feel that much better.
10. Improve Insulation
If you are renting a property or conversely if you are an owner ensure your property has sufficient insulation. By 2019 there are laws and regulation for homes to maintain a minimum standard of insulation. For more info see https://www.tenancy.govt.nz/maintenance-and-inspections/insulation/
11. Embrace the sun
Throughout the day ensure curtains and blinds are open on south-facing windows. Let the warmth of the sun stream in. At night close blinds and curtains, block off any drafts. It’s a minor change but the benefits will be worthwhile.
If the overbearing winter is too much then why not plan a holiday to warmer climates? You can even apply for a travel loan to escape the wintery conditions and fast-forward your holiday plans.
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