12 top tips on keeping your home warm this winter
It’s that time of year again, we’re all getting the first signs of a cold winter!
With millions of people around the UK still working or studying from home the question of keeping your home warm without spending too much on heating bills is more relevant now than ever.
No doubt fights have been starting in house-shares all over the country over how often to have the heating on and at what temperature.
If you’re worried about how much you’ll have to spend on your home-office this winter, fear not! We’ve put together some top tips on how to keep your home warm.
Before you start your insulating tactics, you may also be able to claim money back from your employer or claim tax relief to support the heating bills.
Employers can pay you £6/week. Employers can give you an allowance up to this amount. However with a lot of companies are struggling at the moment, it may not be the best time to ask.
Instead you can claim tax relief for additional household costs if you have to work at home on a regular basis, either for all or part of the week. You can see the details and how to claim it here.
Another way is to ask your landlord directly if they could help this winter. Although they’re not obliged to, the government is running a Green Homes Grant which means your landlord can get up to £5,000 contribution on things like replacing windows or insulating the roof!
Now, let’s dig into some practical ways to keep your home warm:
1. Draught excluders
Got a draughty house? That breeze will be cooling you down more than you think! Covering the bottoms of doorways with anything from spare blankets to ‘sausage dog’ excluders can make the room warmer and let you turn that heating down without feeling a difference! If you really want to push the boat out, cover up letterboxes, key-holes and cat-flaps too.
2. Blankets, blankets, blankets!
Blankets can instantly transform a room from cold to cosy and come in all sizes and thicknesses. Dot them around your place to warm you up when you’re watching TV or to go over your duvet at night. Try to pick one in a soft fabric which can go in the washing machine.
3. Use tin-foil to keep your flat warm!
Make your GCSE physics teacher proud by reflecting the heat back into the room! Wrap some card with tin foil and put it behind your radiators, there’s no point putting time and effort into organising your heating if half the heat is just going into your walls. If you want a more professional way of doing this you can buy Radiator Insulation Foil!
4. Don’t crowd your radiators
If you’ve got a sofa right in front of a radiator then it probably means that the room isn’t getting any heat. Keeping furniture away from the radiator means heat reaches further and also decreases the fire risk! Also when you’re hanging your washing, it’s always tempting to place it on the radiator to dry quicker but a clothes rail might mean you can enjoy more heat!
5. Insulate hot water pipes
Tired of waiting for your shower to get hot in the mornings? If you put some foam tubing around your hot water pipes, you won’t have to bear the cold for so long and you won’t need to worry so much about unnecessary energy wastage.
6. Leave the oven door open
If you and your housemates spend a lot of time in the kitchen, you may as well use the heat from the oven to warm you up while you eat! Once you’ve finished cooking, just leave the door open and let the heat circulate!
7. Thick curtains
Windows can make or break the temperature of a room, especially if you don’t have double-glazed windows. Closing your curtains once it gets dark with thick curtains (or draped blankets) keeps heat in the room far more effectively. They’re also great if you live on a busy street for keeping out sound and light.
8. Use rugs to keep the floor warm
Rugs will keep your feet warm and stop heat from escaping, plus it’s a great opportunity to give your house more character. If you want to take this to the next level, you can purchase a heating mat to put under your rug but they can be quite costly!
9. Put up wall hangings to keep some heat in
Channel your inner hippie and put some hangings up around your house – you’ll keep the heat in and look edgy while you do it! If you’re really suffering in the cold, you could even hang up some thick rugs.
10. Hot water bottle
A hot water bottle is your best friend over winter. Not only does it give you instance warmth but you can take it with you everywhere!
Layer up! Invest in some good under layers either for the day or during the night. These really work wonders for being your body heat in!
12. Fingerless gloves
Typing away on your laptop working from home can mean cold hands! Try fingerless gloves to keep them warm during work- no one on zoom will be able to see!
See our blog on 12 easy ways for renters to reduce their utility bills here.
Finally, make sure your insurance is up to date just in case any of your stuff might get damaged by the cold or a frozen pipe. Looking for renters insurance? Get a quote below from just £5 per month.