One in ten Brits worry that saving energy will cost them the earth

solar panelsAP

With energy bills rocketing £224 within a year, consumers are always looking for new ways to cut back and save. However while being more energy efficient could help people to turn the clock back on rising bills, new research by uSwitch.com reveals that Brits are still to be convinced of the value of going 'green'.

Although nearly six in ten people believe that being 'green' will save them money, rather confusingly more than one in ten also say it is too expensive. And this worry is putting people off buying energy efficient products. One in ten think they are too pricey and the extra expense isn't worth it as they aren't confident of the savings - even though they clearly cost less to run.

However, Brits are embracing some green attitudes to help make their homes more energy efficient and save money on their bills and surprisingly, despite misconceptions that they are unsightly home additions, consumers are actually giving solar panels a thumbs up. The majority, nearly 70%, believe they are a good way of cutting expensive electricity bills - in fact they can slash the annual electricity bill by up to £177, or a third.

As well as saving money, some believe they are a positive addition to their home, as a fifth of consumers think that they will make their property more attractive to future buyers (21%). And other energy efficiency of a new home is important to consumers when it comes to buying a new home. Double glazed windows come out as the top must-have, followed by a property with cavity wall and loft insulation, solar panels, and an Energy Performance Certificate - all ways to keep heat in, and bill down.

But again, cost is an issue. Over a third are put off by the cost saying that they are only available for people who can afford to be green. However, some consumers can get hold of free solar panels, which could still give them savings on their energy bills.

And for those who are trying to be 'green' it is saving money that they're thinking about - saving the world is an afterthought. 21 million Brits believe it's more important to save money (44%) than the environment (23%).

Kevin Sears, energy efficiency expert at uSwitch.com, says: "In the age of rising energy prices, consumers now understand the need to cut back on the amount of energy they use. However there is still a common fear that energy efficiency costs the earth and that the outlay will outstrip any savings. But with some measures saving more within just one year than the initial cost, being more energy efficient can benefit your bank balance as well as the environment.

"And it doesn't even have to cost you - free solar panels could cut your electricity bill by a massive £177. Other measures such as insulating lofts and cavity walls for just £300 could cut your bills by £390 a year - so you'll already be quids in after the first year. And for those who may struggle with these initial costs, it's worth remembering that suppliers have a pot of money to help customers make their homes more energy efficient, so it's worth speaking to them to find out whether you qualify for this help."
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