sDream prices are very high, which most families note in their wallets. While politicians debate what to do about the situation, many families have chosen to take major measures to reduce electricity consumption.
Anne-Len Kumano-Insby, her husband Andreas and their two daughters live in a 130-square-meter apartment in an old apartment block in Oslo – one of the areas where electricity prices used to be very high.
The couple, known on social media as super savers, together published the book “This is how you get rich! Handbook on Financial FreedomFor the past three years, he has had a strong focus on saving money to achieve more freedom.
When last year they noticed that electricity costs had risen sharply, they decided to do everything they could to reduce their electricity consumption.
– It was like we were competing against ourselves. It’s about cutting as much as possible, without affecting the quality of life, Ann Lin says with a smile.
reduced by 42 percent
The result is impressive. The electricity provider’s app shows that a household has reduced its electricity consumption by more than 30 percent in most months compared to the previous year, and up to 42 percent at most.
The biggest savings came from the fact that they used less electricity for heating.
Heating is the biggest source of electricity consumption here in Norway and it’s certainly also what we spend the most money on. So we lowered the temperature in all the rooms, put on a little extra clothes, changed into woolen clothes and put on slippers. We also sat with blankets on the sofa, which the kids love to do anyway, and we adapted to living with an average low temperature.
We also introduced different temperature zones, which had a huge impact on the bill. The bedroom, corridor, and laundry room were below 18 degrees, the living room and kitchen were the warmest, and the small bathroom the warmest.
– We also have the opportunity to fire a very efficient wood-burning stove. But last year it was difficult, because it was sold out entirely of firewood for a while in Oslo. This year we have already ordered delivery, which we definitely recommend others to do as well. Don’t wait until the cold sets in, she says.
Closed from the bedroom
The move the family itself took as the most extreme was that the little sister, aged 10, moved into the room of the older sister, aged 13, since the siblings were sharing a room, they could turn off the heating in one of the children’s rooms and use it as a room cooling.
– It happened by chance. The older sister was on a school trip for a week and then the little sister moved into her room because she was missing her. When she returned, she continued to sleep inside with her sister, which was a relief to both of them. So we agreed that they could continue to sleep in the same room for a few more months.
– It is not certain that they are interested in doing the same this winter, as there may have been more controversy than usual. But if they get a portion of the savings in the form of cash or something else, they might join in again, says Ann Lin with a little laugh.
Another major expense for electricity for many families is heating water.
So they chose to shower fewer, shorter, and colder times. Ann Lin began to finish each shower with a 30-second cold shower.
– But it’s not about saving money! I’m a fan of ice baths and like to do it often, because I think it has positive health effects. But obviously if you finish showering with cold water, you won’t feel cold when you get out of the shower. You feel warm, even though the room may not be very warm.
Small measures also have an effect
Although the focus was on finding the great electricity thieves, An Lin believes that you can also save yourself a lot of small actions that you might not even notice.
We’ve had a lot of dupp e-extracts that have been around the whole time, without using them normally. It has been cleaned and turned off. Another small measure is to always cook the potatoes and vegetables with a little water at the bottom of the pot and the lid. It runs faster and requires less energy to boil water.
– Another example is brewing coffee or tea and putting it in a thermos. Then have hot drinks throughout the day.
It also greatly reduces the number of laundry loads. Something that saves time and is good for the environment, in addition to using less electricity.
– Apart from underwear, we went even further with clothes. The trick is not to leave the clothes you used to lie in a pile on the floor, but to hang them neatly so you can wear them again. I myself hang the clothes I used on hangers outside the wardrobe. By the way, the wool season has already begun and I do not need to wash woolen clothes often. You can air it out, preferably outside in freezing temperatures, as it is as effective as washing it more gently.
– We also use the clothes dryer as little as possible, as I find it damages clothes as well. But this is clearly not a suitable procedure for everyone. If you’re experiencing moisture and mildew issues because you’re not using the dryer, this is a bad idea.
Determine your energy consumption
Ann Lin also used the electric company’s app to map what the family did and drew the most electricity. The app shows how electricity consumption varies from hour to hour, hence it was easy to notice that electricity consumption jumped when it rained one.
In this way, I was also able to detect savings measures that had little effect.
What pays off for you depends entirely on the electronic devices you have. If your electricity provider does not offer such an app, you can log on to Elhub.no, which is owned by Statnett, and see all the hourly measured values.
– We care about cooking from scratch and can see that cooking less food was not a huge gain in electricity for us. We have also continued to use many electrical appliances, as they constitute a fading small portion of our consumption.
– We didn’t want to take electrical measures that reduce the quality of life, but I also think a lot has to do with the situation. Being cooler in the room, wearing slippers and washing with a rag is something I associate with being in the cabin. So you don’t have to feel cheesy if you turn it into a treat, she says.
Beware of attractive prices
The family is not the only one that has reduced its electricity consumption in the last year. New figures from Elhub show overall consumption among households is down 15.3 percent so far this year, compared to the same period last year.
In southern Norway, where prices are the highest, consumption has fallen by as much as 20 percent.
But in order for the final amount of the electricity bill to be as minimal as possible, you should also have a good electricity agreement.
Consumer economist Selji Sandmail at DNB recommends everyone go to strompris.no and make sure they have one of the spot-price agreements that come first.
– Ask for a notification via SMS when the agreement is concluded, and you will get a message before the price guarantee expires. She says this is because many people are prone to switching to a more expensive contract after the warranty period has expired.
– A good show is often too good to be true. Therefore, there are many who are tempted by low prices for a while, then raise the price and expect that people will not convert. So if you are keen to pay as little as possible, you should change your electricity supplier when the warranty period is over. The good news is that it doesn’t take long.
I am looking for additional services
According to the consumer economist, you should also be aware of the profit charged by the electric company and the monthly cost.
If you buy electricity over the phone, through door-to-door sales, on the street or at an electronics store, you should be more careful about what you agree to.
– Expensive and bad deals are often paid to you with such direct sales. If you buy electricity from the shop, you will also lose the right to cancel within 14 days. Also, make sure the company doesn’t include extra services like price setting, electricity insurance, or green electricity in the agreement if that’s something you don’t need.
Also, be sure to create an electronic invoice or direct debit. You have to pay a fee for paper bills, preferably around 60 NOK per month!
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