In 2017, energy prices rose sharply. Each of the “Big Six” energy providers released details of price rises for people on standard tariffs, including market leaders British Gas increasing prices by 12.5% in September. Following increases, this reflects an average energy bill of £1,259.
In 2018, experts predict that these rises will continue, with the NICEIC urging homeowners to look into investing in smart technology in order to offset inflated costs.
The range of smart appliances available is growing rapidly. They’re connected to the internet and can be controlled via an app on your smartphone. This allows users to control their homes remotely, turning off lights or heating from your phone, meaning that you have more control and can avoid wasting money that you don’t need to.
Although in the past smart tech may have been expensive, the cost is coming down and varying levels of technology mean that there is likely to be a solution which fits your budget. “The cost of installing products to create a smart home has come down considerably over recent years, making it much more appealing to the mass market,” says Darren Staniforth, NICEIC’s technical development manager.
“Better still, the beauty of today’s offering is that it can be up scaled or downsized depending on each individual’s needs and budget – covering everything from the control of heating, lighting, home entertainment, security and other domestic functions.”
“While a new energy efficient appliance maybe a simple ‘plug in job’, for example, installing new LED downlights or spotlights may be complex and should always be done by a professional,” says Darren.
“The same goes for smart thermostats, with many solutions requiring a good cable/wireless infrastructure – which only an electrician can provide.”
Here are a number of ways you can begin your journey to a smarter home:
Rather than opting for a bank of light switches, consider installing a wireless system, which will let you manage your lights with a remote control or a smart phone from anywhere with an internet connection.
These smart controls allow you to set lighting scenes for different occasions, including romantic lighting and even movie scene.
This is an area that has been growing in recent times and new businesses offer affordable alternatives to the traditional market leaders in this sector meaning that it’s much more accessible than ever.
Have you ever left for work in the morning, only to remember that you’ve forgotten to turn off your heating? This can increase energy costs dramatically. One solution to this problem would be to have a smart thermostat installed. As with smart lighting, this gives you remote control over your heating – no more forgetting to turn off your heating.
“Working in conjunction with a smart device, these clever systems enable users to turn their heating on and off remotely, set specific temperatures and can even ‘know’ to turn down the heat when someone leaves the building or if the weather changes.”
Keep track of your energy usage
Without technology, it’s near impossible to accurately keep track of how you’re using energy. Is there a particular appliance which is sapping lots of energy without you realising? With smart tech you can track and spot trends which will give you a better insight into ways which you can cut back on your energy usage in order to save some money. There are lots of solutions out there which are both expensive and affordable; in fact many providers offer free installation.