Now that the nest is empty, there are lots of little things you can do to decrease your energy consumption, and potentially save money on your bills.
Take a look at our five handy hints and see how you can change your habits around the home.
1. Use fewer rooms
If you don’t want to move house, consider decluttering your home to reduce the number of rooms you use. Clear out the study and move a bed in there to create a dual-purpose guest room so you no longer need to use one of the bedrooms.
Can the living room and dining rooms be combined? Perhaps you could buy a smaller table now. And consider whether you spend enough time outdoors to justify outdoor lighting and heating. No longer using lighting and heating in some parts of your home could make a big difference.
2. Cook in bulk
Now you don’t have a home full of growing, hungry young adults, lighten the load in the kitchen by cooking in bulk. Make a meal that can stretch across two or even three days. You’ll be surprised how much less time you spend in front of the food processor, oven and microwave, and how much less energy you’ll consume in the kitchen.
3. Reduce your appliances
You may have needed two fridges in the past, but consider whether that’s still the case. Fridges typically consume more electricity than any other home appliance, so consider getting rid of the oldest fridge of the two . If you have only one fridge but it’s large, it might be worth thinking about downsizing.
Think about your phone usage too. Do you need a home phone as well as a mobile now there are fewer people in the home? And what about your PC, laptop or tablet? Your needs may now be much simpler, so consider one option rather than multiple.
4. Pick a single day for housework
It’s tempting to put a load of laundry on or run the vacuum cleaner over the floor whenever you have a spare moment, but this can actually consume a lot of energy. Try to pick a single day of the week to do your housework, and when you do, ensure you put on a full load of laundry and use a colder temperature. If you use warm or hot water to wash clothes, around 85 per cent of the energy is used to heat the water .
5. Check your energy plan
Once you’ve made some changes, it might be worth revisiting your energy plan to make sure it’s still the right one for you. Use our online energy calculator to ensure you’re getting the best possible deal on your household energy.
With a few simple changes around your home, you can now be confident that you’re being as energy efficient as possible.