A simples guide

How to save on energy bills in shared accommodation

If you’re in a student house or house sharing, there are a number of things you might want to bear in mind regarding energy usage. It can be tricky discussing energy bills in these settings as no one wants to point the finger at the one person who always turns up the thermostat! But you may not want to pay more for your energy if you think you can take some simple steps to reduce your usage.

Here we look at how to save money on energy bills if you live in shared housing and avoid any arguments.

Who pays each bill?

Students and other people who live together may need to pay bills such as utilities, telephone, TV, internet etc. Setting up a joint bank account may not be an attractive option for some housemates, so many people in shared accommodation have an arrangement whereby each direct debit with a provider is allocated to one specific person. Then once each direct debit becomes due, the payer asks his/her fellow tenants to pay their share.

Get each person listed with the service provider

As explained above, energy bills may need to be paid from the bank account of one of the housemates. However, you can arrange for all the residents to be named on the account with the utility provider, then hopefully this will make everyone more willing to pay, as their credit score could be affected if payments are missed. This also means that no one person is left out of pocket if the other housemates are late to pay you back.

saving energy in shared accommodation

Have financial matters settled as early as possible

When moving in to shared accommodation, socialising and getting to know each other better may be uppermost in your mind. However, make sure you take time to discuss financial matters – such as the arrangements for paying bills – at an early stage of your time living together to make sure you’re all clear on where you stand and to avoid any surprises when the bills start to roll in.

Take meter readings

Note down the reading on any utility meters in the house, both when you move in and when you move out. That way you will have evidence for the utility provider should they try and overcharge you.

energy meter - shared accommodation

General energy saving tips

As a tenant, you won’t be able to insist that your landlord / lady installs better insulation, or puts solar panels on the roof. However, there are many simple things you can still do to save energy and cut your bills. Why not have a read of our energy saving tips and start making some changes now? You can also encourage your housemates to do the same, and you might reduce your bill in no time.

You can also shop around for your energy provider to make sure you get the best deal and see if you could save money on another tariff or with another provider?

So what are you waiting for? Start looking at your options now and see if you could save.