Five solutions to reduce your electricity bill
Data from the Nord Pool stock exchange, Europe’s leading electricity manager, show that the price of electricity has almost doubled in recent months compared to last year. This trend is mainly driven by the sharp rise in carbon prices and the steady growth in electricity demand as the economy recovers from the constraints of the global pandemic. This has also resulted in an increase in the electricity bills of the Latvian population. Specialists of Latvia’s second largest electricity trader Enefit have compiled practical recommendations on how to evaluate and reduce their monthly electricity costs.
As explained Enefit Mārtiņš Vancāns, head of the retail segment, the upward trend in prices is likely to continue in the coming months: “Price for electricity Nord Pool The stock exchange in June this year, compared to May, has grown by 57%, and already now we see that prices continue to develop similarly in July. Consumers who use dynamic or exchange-linked contracts experience price fluctuations immediately, as their electricity price changes every hour. On the other hand, those users who now conclude new fixed price contracts, depending on the chosen supplier, see an increase in the electricity bill by 10-40%. It is clear that not every household can fully compensate for the increase in the overall cost of electricity generation. However, this is a good time to look at what we can do with our electricity bill, using less energy, doing it smarter or looking for ways to buy it more cheaply. ”
How much power do you need?
Part of the fixed costs in the electricity bill consists of a fee for distribution system services or a fee for connection to the electricity network, which is provided by JSC “Sadales tīkls” in Latvia. The power supply required for a home is determined by the electrical appliances in it and how many of them are used at the same time. Sometimes it is possible that a connection with a decent capacity reserve has been chosen for the home, which is not really necessary, and thus we overpay for at least a few euros a month. It is possible to find out and both increase and decrease your connection capacity on the “Distribution Network” customer self-service portal www.e-st.lv.
The cheapest energy is what we do not consume
In order to be sure that we use the purchased electricity efficiently, evaluate the efficiency of the devices in the home and replace the obsolete or very “edible” device with more modern or other alternatives. It is clear that the first step is to improve lighting and the introduction of LED lamps, which have already become a classic in the energy efficiency genre, which can reduce the energy consumed for lighting by up to 80%.
When purchasing a new electrical appliance, pay attention to its energy efficiency class. For example, for refrigerators, each subsequent energy efficiency class saves an average of a few euros a year. Here, however, one must be critical in assessing how many pros the potential savings no longer outweigh the increase in the price of the device itself.
Unlock electric vampires
Idle or standby (standby), various household electrical appliances consume about 10% of the total annual household consumption. The most insatiable electric vampire and wi-fi modem – by disconnecting it from the network when not in use, you can save up to 86 kilowatt hours per year. The second place is convincingly occupied by the game console, which secretly “eats” 43 kilowatt hours a year. But the top of the most voracious appliances is closed by a microwave oven and a dishwasher, which consume 26 extra kilowatt hours a year.
In addition, there are many different devices in each house that can make the numbers even more impressive. It is therefore recommended to unplug the appliance from a socket that is not in constant use.
Dynamic price – for active savers
Some people choose a dynamic energy purchase agreement, where the price of electricity changes every hour with the fluctuations of the stock exchange price. This means that you will feel the rise and fall of electricity prices equally quickly on a daily basis. You can adjust the moment when you consume more energy accordingly.
Usually, when everyone is at home and actively running electrical appliances, the demand for electricity also increases. At night, the price can drop as much as 10 times. Calculations show that when you switch on the dishwasher or washing machine with the timer, for example at From 5.00 to 7.00 in the morning, instead of in the evening after work, you will save about 30 euros a year. Not much, but when combined with other solutions, you can reap tangible benefits.
Follow the market offer
Each electricity trader reviews the prices of its offers at different intervals, adjusting them to market fluctuations. Accordingly, it is also worthwhile for consumers to regularly compare the current offers of different traders, especially at times when there are more rapid price changes, to which each trader may react differently. This may mean being able to switch the PPA at a better price. Currently more than 100 0000 Latvian households regularly change their electricity trader.
The merchant switching process is simple and only takes a few minutes. Any resident may at any time apply for a service or replace it by telephone or electronically with the electricity trader of his choice. In order for the cooperation with the new trader to start from next month, the contract must be concluded by the 15th day of the current month.
It is common that the largest electricity traders in Latvia offer two tariff plans to households – fixed or variable (dynamic). When choosing a fixed tariff plan, the price of electricity is set for a fixed period of a year or longer. In turn, the variable price follows the changes in electricity prices on the stock exchange and changes every hour. As indicated Enefit experts, the electricity market is currently volatile, in the current situation it is better to choose a fixed tariff plan, because the upward trend in prices is likely to continue in the near future. If you choose a variable price, you should be prepared to follow your consumption habits more actively.