I save hundreds of pounds on energy bills by living off-grid

A MUM-OF-TWO has slashed her energy bills by going off-grid, helping her to save up to £750 a month.

The cost of gas and electricity is sky-high but some Brits have cut the amount they spend by moving out of traditional homes.

Lindsay, 41, moved into a caravan in June last year as she was struggling to make ends meet in her rented property.

She moved out of her three-bed semi into the £1,800 static home on a plot near York to help reduce costs.

The move has helped the self-employed writer slash her bills from more than £1,000 a month to £250 in land rent, The Mirror reported.

Since the swap, she's used up one Calor gas bottle in around seven months, which cost just £60.

Mains power is provided on the site and is included in the rent of £60 per week.

Lindsay, who is on Universal Credit, told the newspaper: “The houses I was looking at cost £800 a month plus bills. I was paying about £140 a month to heat my three-bed semi… the financial pressure was intense.

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“There were some landlords that just said no because I am self-employed. I felt discriminated against and thought, ‘Why am I working so hard to pay into a system that feels broken anyway?’”

She's not the only one who has swapped a traditional home for a new, cheaper way of life.

Around 150,000 people across the country reportedly generate their own power and heating.

Matthew Plumb, 43, and his girlfriend Lauren Youngs, 28, have also saved money by moving into a shepherd's hut four years ago.

Their monthly spending on heat, electricity, water and rent total less than £25.

Matthew, who is a tree surgeon, said: "I spend nothing on rent, zero on electric as we get all we need from solar panels and about £25 every six weeks on propane gas."

How can I get help with my energy bills?

If you're hoping to save money on your energy bills, but you're not quite ready to go off-grid, there are smaller steps you can take.

Winter fuel payments 

You could get up to £300 off your fuel payments during the coldest months of the year with the annual tax-free benefit that’s available.

You’re eligible for the money if you were born on or before October 5, 1954 or you lived in the UK for at least one day during the week of September 21 to 27, 2020 – called the "qualifying week".

Cold weather payments 

Low income households can get £25 a week to help with energy bills during the winter thanks to the cold weather payment scheme too.

You’ll get a payment if the average temperature in your area is zero degrees celsius or below over the space of a week.

You must receive pension credit, income support, jobseeker's allowance, income-related employment and support allowance, or Universal Credit to be eligible.

Apply for a grant

If you’re struggling, you could apply for a grant to help cover energy costs too.

British Gas Energy Trust runs a scheme and you don’t have to even be a customer to apply.

  • Bulb energy fund
  • EDF's energy customer support fund
  • E.on's energy fund
  • Npower's energy fund
  • Ovo's debt and energy assistance
  • Scottish Power's hardship fund

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