How will you spend your £150?

Well, rumours continue abound that Gordon Brown is set to give a one-off cash payment of £150 to the UK’s seven million family households in order to help alleviate the financial burden being caused by rocketing fuel prices. I’ve no doubt it will be seen as a positive gesture by many people, but personally I think the Government has missed a trick here by not offering households £150 worth of energy saving measures.

Our own stats show that with £150, a householder could:

Draught proof an entire house, saving around £25 a year with an outlay of around £90.
Buy a hot water tank jacket, saving around £20 per year, with an outlay of just £12.
Fully insulate all pipe work, saving around £9 per year, with an outlay of just £9.
Replacing existing light bulbs with energy saving ones. With a typical cost of around £3 per bulb it would be possible to replace every light bulb in the house.  This could save around £45 a year or £600 over the lifetime of the bulbs!

My maths was never much good, but even I can see that by spending this £150 on energy saving measures means saving around £100 this year, next year, the year after….well, you get my drift!

Plus – there are also a current round of grants available from energy suppliers (due to the Carbon Emissions Reduction Target) meaning many people are able to get cavity wall insulation or loft insulation at much reduced prices, especially those on benefits. Alternatively, the £150 could be put towards a DIY loft insulation top up.

I am really surprised that the Government’s solution to rising fuel prices seems likely to be giving householders a cash lump sum, rather than investing it in a longer term solution like energy saving, which will not only help to permanently reduce fuel bills, but also significantly contribute towards the Government meeting its own challenging carbon emissions reduction targets. Watch the sales of lottery tickets rise!!!