Things have thawed now, since it's about 2 degrees, but when I woke up this morning the thermometer read -4 degrees outside. The lawn was covered in frost and I could see icicles on the roof gutter. The half-finished bottle of coke someone had dropped outside my door was frozen solid, as was the trail of fluid that never made it to the drainage by the pavement. It's cold!
I use a pay-as-you-go gas meter, which right now isn't a very good idea, but it was in the past, so I have a very good idea how much money I'm feeding that beast. It's crazy how one day it was consuming normally at the rate I'd been used to for years, and the next day it consumed it's weekly allowance in a couple of days. Now that we're in winter, almost, it seems they've bumped the rate even higher now. The funny thing about PAYG meters is that they consume money whether or not you use any energy. It's a kind of rent you have to pay regardless. So if you load them with money, shut every device down and go on holiday, the balance would be lower by the time you return.
There is a 90 year old lady that lives a few doors away from me. I think she's been indoors for nearly 3 years now, since the start of the pandemic, and I often think about her. I can see she gets regular visitors, including someone that seems to be a health worker, but I can only hope she's got some kind of arrangement with her energy costs. I can't see how any pensioner, government subsidy or not, can cope with these crazy costs. I know there has been an additional £600 paid out to pensioners to help this winter but, at the rate I'm feeding my meter, I can't imagine that lasting longer than 2 months max.
If this carries on, perhaps until next winter, maybe this is how things end here. Perhaps we are descending into some kind of apocalyptic time. As a fan of apocalyptic drama, I've always wondered how a society can turn into something like that. In the dramas it's always some kind of global catastrophe, like a virus or nuclear winter, that creates the conditions for it to happen. Maybe this is how it happens in real life. Imagine if we all run out of money at the same time at some point next year. What then?
Peace & Love,
Some people really will have to consider whether they can afford to heat their homes right now. The extra the government are giving us towards the bills will not cover all the extra.
The Insulate Britain protesters may have had a point. A lot of homes leak too much heat. Ours is fairly modern with decent insulation, but some still have nothing in the loft and single glazed windows.
My place leaks like a basket even though I recently did the windows. Letter box, the ceiling latch to access the loft and so many bits and bots leak air in constantly. My heating system is also quite old. I believe the boiler is about 30 years old now, but I don't want to replace it since it's still working great.
A new boiler may be more efficient and pay for itself. I made a box that goes over the top of the loft hatch and it keeps some extra heat in. It all adds up.
It might. I was offered something similar but I'm afraid of it breaking regularly. Most modern devices aren't as well built as the old ones.
Ah, PAYG meters, that takes me back to a seedy bedsitter in Earlsfield. I actually quite enjoyed living there and getting the overground to anywhere I needed to be. HElped my time management no end that trains left at set times, unlike the bus. Do you still feed coins or is it a key or card arrangement now?
It keeps eating your money because there is a standing charge for delivering gas to your house, whether you use it or not. I had a gas bill the other day and the standing charge adds a considerable amount to it, maybe 20%.
I agree, I wonder how people are managing.
The funny thing is, if I leave a small amount and it gets to zero, they stop charging. The argument is that they "turn the gas off". Why not give me to turn it off and on at will? lol
What would you estimate the cost to be to heat your home this month? I'm simply wondering how that would compare to our costs here in the US to heat a home. We can all stop saying "winter is coming" and start saying "Winter is here!"
Well, I'm probably not the best measure of that since my place is pretty small. Also I'm out of the house a lot. Even then I must have spent about £400 in the past month alone. It used to cost less than half of that just a few months ago. My tariff is also probably higher than others outside London. The Pound Sterling has gone down against the dollar these days so probably doesn't seem as bad.
Ooooff that is pretty expensive. Our costs are about $200 US for a month of heating cost and that is for a 4 bedroom, two story house.
Yeah we're deep in doodoo here at the moment. Hopefully another year max, we should be out of it. We need to pay back some of all that money printed in the past couple of years.
Mmm, I'd prefer it if some of the more wealthy chaps and chapesses paid for it, especially the ones on the VIP track to government contracts - talk about money for old rope - Lady Mone's £29.0m finder's fee would cover a few old people's bills.
Best idea ever! Also people that shorted the market before the announcement and made a killing from the whole thing.