The colder months of winter can often lead to an increase in energy bills. On top of that, we have to decorate for the festive season and sometimes entertain our friends with dinner or drinks. All of this adds to costs during the winter months which aren’t easily covered by our usual earnings, especially if we’re already sticking to a budget.

As part of our Wise in Winter series, we thought we’d put a few ideas together to help you tackle the rising expenditure from November through to February.

Smart Meters

We are sure you must’ve heard already, but smart meters are a must for all year round energy saving. They show you in pounds and pence how much your energy use is costing, and usually show you where and when you’re using the most energy, so you can focus on reducing your high-cost areas first.

When it comes to reducing your energy bills in winter, most people try to wait until the very last minute to turn the heating on. This obviously means you spend less on heating, but it doesn’t mean you have to be cold all the time. Warm clothes and blankets at the ready are a no-brainer, but it’s important to make sure you stay warm throughout the day, as once you get cold it can be difficult to warm up again.

Once the heating does go on, use your radiators to dry your washing. In fact, you shouldn’t have to use a tumble dryer during winter at all! Maybe turn the heating off if you’re cooking a big Sunday roast as the heat from the oven will help warm the house.

Hot soups and cooking in bulk can also help keep you warm and reduce your energy bills respectively. Small changes can make a big difference, especially when it comes to money.

Christmas Decorations

Other high expense areas of home-living through winter include the epitome of festivity: Christmas. While decorating might be a blast, decorations can be very expensive, especially when you have to add the cost of a tree on top. Buying a fake tree can be a good way around this, as you can use it every year and they rarely need replacing, but we know sometimes you just want the smell of a freshly cut spruce to hang your lights and baubles. If this is the case, consider what size tree you actually need (spoiler: it might not be the biggest tree you can find!). Often, a smaller tree with the right decorations can look just as beautiful. And remember, Christmas trees are often priced by height, so a shorter but wider tree will look just as festive.

champagne glasses


Finally, entertainment. Christmas is wonderful time to meet up with friends and family from all over the place, and it’s made all the more magical by the decorations and festive-inspired foods and drinks. But hosting can be expensive and even going to other people’s Christmas drinks can get pricey.

If you’re hosting your own bash this year, try organising a bring your own, where everyone brings their own drinks. You can supply foods and soft drinks, but if everyone brings their own alcohol, it makes the whole evening much cheaper. And if you’re uncomfortable asking everyone to do this, maybe just ask your close friends as they’ll understand. Alternatively, host your evening in a local pub so that everyone can buy their own drinks or start their own tab. That way they can pay for what they’d like (and you don’t have to deal with the clearing up!).

If you haven’t already, you should definitely check out our other blogs in the Wise in Winter series for tips on how you can cut down your food expenditure without cutting out good and healthy meals, and how to make Christmas gifting just a little easier on your wallet.

We know that preparing for Winter can be tricky, it’s hard enough coping with a birthday in the family, let alone a day where there’s celebration for everyone, and try as we might, not everything always goes according to plan. If you have an emergency expense crop up, a short term loan could be just what you’re looking for. You can choose how much to borrow and when to repay which just might be the helping hand you need in the run up to Christmas.

While we offer payday loans and multi-month loans, it’s important to remember that borrowing more than you need can make it difficult to repay, and late repayments can cause serious money problems. Try budgeting before immediately applying for a loan and check out any of our other blogs on easy saving tips to prevent taking out credit in the future.