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Cost of living support

Advice and support to help manage the rising cost of living.

Energy efficiency - what you can do

Insulate your home's cavity walls and lofts

The most cost-effective way to save energy at home. Doing both could save £265 per year in heating bills, and you might be eligible to get the work done free. See our Insulate Your Home section to find out about Council-supported insulation schemes.

Upgrade your boiler

If your boiler is over 15 years old, it's probably time you replaced it with a new energy-efficient one. It will save you around a third on your heating bills straight away, and even more if you upgrade to modern controls.

Choose A-rated appliances

Look out for the energy saving recommended logo when you're buying new electrical appliances. The logo appears on a growing range of products - from light bulbs to laundry appliances - indicating the most energy-efficient appliances, which are also cheaper to run.

A bright idea... use energy-efficient light bulbs

Trade your ordinary light bulbs for energy-saving ones. Energy-efficient light bulbs last around 12 times longer than regular tungsten filament bulbs, and you can save up to £7 per bulb on your annual electricity bill.

Treat your hot water tank... give it a jacket

An insulating jacket for hot water tanks only costs a few pounds and pays for itself within months.

Switch off!

Switch off lights when you leave the room and other electrical equipment when you're not using it. Also, avoid leaving equipment like televisions, stereos and DVD players on 'stand-by' mode: this uses a lot more power than you might think. The best thing about switching off is it costs nothing and will reduce your electricity bill. The Energy Saving Trust offers further information on energy efficient lighting.

Change to a 'green' electricity supplier

You can support the development of renewable electricity generation by switching your supply to a green electricity supplier (such as Ecotricity, Good Energy) or changing to a green tariff if your existing supplier has one (Such as 'Juice' from npower). Green electricity could even be cheaper than your current electricity supply.

Walk, cycle and use public transport more

Take the stress out of your travel - get out in the fresh air, walking or cycling, or let someone else do the driving, on public transport. Walking and cycling is good for your health as well as for the planet, and travelling by train, bus or coach produces nearly ten times less greenhouse gas than travelling by car over the same distance.

Have a holiday in Britain

You may have been to Italy, Greece or the USA, but how well do you know Britain? Why not take your next holiday in the UK and discover what's on offer closer to home. You might be surprised by what you find and reducing your air travel will make a big difference to your environmental impact.

Buy locally produced, seasonal produce

How far has that apple travelled to get your local supermarket? Check the label: it might be from the other side of the world! Fresh food from abroad is often transported by air, which produces a lot of greenhouse gas. If you buy local produce, you'll reduce your 'food-miles' and be supporting local agriculture too.