Since moving to the new mammasaver towers, our energy bills have increased.
Not only have we more rooms to heat and light, but my sanity has been saved by a hefty investment in a washer dryer, meaning higher electricity bills.
Of course, we want to keep our bills down as much as we can by doing energy saving things around the house, but also want to make sure that we're not paying over the odds for the gas and electricity that we use, meaning switching suppliers (groan).I can't be alone in finding the whole 'switching energy supplier' thing one enormous, fiddly, time consuming, confusing, faff.In our previous home, we should have switched more frequently but didn't due to just finding the whole thing laborious, and left unsure whether our switches actually saved us any money at all.Enter, stage right, the Martin Lewis Energy Saving Club.
By filling out ONE form, the Club claims that they will be able to calculate if there are any cheaper energy deals out there for us each month, then texts and emails us if they do find a cheaper deal for us.If we do want to switch, the site has simple switching tool that takes away the usual endless form filling associated with switching suppliers.So far, we haven't been alerted to any better deals, but when we are, we can test out this tool and see how easy this switching business is with the Cheap Energy Club.Watch this space....
You may or may not have noticed, but the mammasaver blog has been a little quiet lately.As it turns out, the 'three people, one income' tagline on the sidebar must now be changed to 'four people.'The mammasaver household has indeed been blessed with a beautiful little baby girl, born in mid November. Two weeks late. Two entire weeks late. My pelvis has not forgiven me yet.Amidst the newborn whirlwind, we also moved house to accommodate these tiny little growing people. Apparently, a one bedroom flat wouldn't do. So, our financial challenges have increased this year a little:
It is a challenge, but already we have found some fuss-less tricks to keep our spending down.
- Bigger home = bigger energy bills.
- Nicer area + bigger home = larger council tax bill (ouch).
- Two children + all of the above = a bigger plughole in our bank account than we had before.
- Oh, and the need for a bigger car...
Watch this space over the coming weeks to hear our spending triumphs and downfalls, which might just save you a bob or two.
It seems that our flat is currently under offer (
hurray!), following weeks of cleaning, tidying
and trying to maintain a unsustainable illusion
of cleanliness and tidyness, toddler in tow.
What would have come in handy though, is this rather lovely prize bundle
on offer from Natural & Clean
, a company who are proud that their products are safe for people, pets and the planet.
Included in the bundle is the Whoops a-daisy, a product that would come in handy for those potty training times.
Pour on the piddle, and this magic stuff soaks everything up
, meaning that your carpets don't take such a hit and your house doesn't have a rather faint smell of widdle.
As for the other products, they are pretty self explanatory, but come with the mammasaver tried and tested seal of approval (the spot cleaner is especially good
| |You could win
the following bundle of lovely cleanliness:
- Natural & Clean Whoops a-daisy!
- Natural & Clean Spot Remover Wipes
- Natural & Clean Bin Deodoriser
- Natural & Clean Spot Remover
All that you need to do is leave a comment and 'like' the Natural & Clean Facebook Page.
All instructions are laid bare below, and the competition runs until 26th May 2012. Good Luck!
Sponsored postThe mammasaver household is still in the throws of showing potential buyers around our flat. With it only being a small flat, it doesn’t take that long. In fact, a disproportionate amount of fussing seems to be going on when a potential buyer calls around.
No offers have yet been made, and in all honesty, it’s a blessed relief. If we did, we’d have to do things. Hire solicitors, removal firms and of course, find somewhere to live. (Duh).
One rather left-field way of finding a competitive price for home removals is by using uShip’s courier services online.
Type in your details (carefully), and you will receive a number of bids from local firms, willing to offer you a competitive price for your house move. The key is to add as much detail as you can, to get back the most bids from potential firms. Adding photos of the furniture and such like that need increases the number of firms offering a competitive bid also.
It seems efficient and a rather cunning way to get local firms to compete for your business. Frankly, an alternative to a whole load of ringing-round sounds rather appealing, when chasing after a toddler and attempting to keep on top of everything.
As for the viewers to our flat? Keep 'em coming. I can take it.
The past fortnight has seen a little trickle of viewers to mammasaver towers. Good news indeed, but not necessarily good news for our energy levels.
Not being the tidiest family in the world, each viewing involves few hours of preparation - cleaning, tidying, fussing, uttering sentences such as "I think we need to tilt that elephant to the left slightly."
One such viewing was arranged this week. The day before, an enormous amount of milk spilled over our lounge carpet.
Stale milk carpet is not a smell I imagine any potential buyers would be impressed with, so I set about cleaning the mess up.
A couple of years ago, we bought a Vax carpet cleaner on special offer through Amazon. Thank heaven we did - it has more than paid for itself and means that we can clean the carpets adhoc, instead of hiring a machine to do the job.
What annoyed me though, was the sheer expense of the carpet cleaner. The top-rated Vax Ultra Solution shampoo claimed to 'power through heavy traffic areas.' However, it left me a non-plussed and £17 a bottle worse off.
Enter trusty Stardrops once again. I employed the £1 per bottle concentrated cleaner (without ammonia) to our milk-spilled wool carpets, and it works as well, if not better than the Vax Ultra Solution.
I'm sure it doesn't have as many sophisticated conditioners, but at 1/17th price, I prefer to use it.
Our quest to sell our flat has been moving on apace of late, culminating in our first viewing this weekend (gasp).Anxiously, I awaited a widowed lady with her kick-ass daughter to give our flat their verdict.Terrified by Margaret Thatcher's alleged assertion that 'a woman can tell if a place is really clean' just by standing in the room, we set forth cleaning like never before.We wanted something cheap (of course) and effective, to cut down the amount of time spent cleaning. Let's face it, there are alot more interesting things in life to do. Already a convert to Stardrops, a £1 per bottle cult product raved about on moneysavingexpert.com's website, we upped the anti by using Stardrops Power Cleaner - £1 for a litre bottle.The quantities required are tiny - 4 tablespoons per 4.5litres of water. It cleans remarkably well, doesn't hurt the skin on my hands and leaves a very fresh smell behind.You can use it on any washable surface apart form fabric, and is the best product we've used to give the tiles and windows in our flat more of a sparkle than the usual cleaning products we use (or should use more often. Ahem).Available from Iceland, Semi Chem and Sainsbury's for about £1 a pop.As for the viewing? It went well. I think.
Moving home frugally - can it be done? *without pulling our hair out*
2012 will bring the mammasaver household a rather stonkingly large challenge - to sell our lovely flat and (oh dear lord) buy a new home.
If it were up to me, we would all stay here forever, and our little lad would not ever grow up. However, as we live in a one bedroom flat, things might not work out too well if we stick to that particular line of whimsy. Apparently, little lad will exceed 2ft tall at some point.
We're right at the start of the process - tinkering with paint, writing down lists, but mostly obsessively checking out Rightmove.com.
This will be our first move with our little boy - previously, mr mammasaver and I flitted between lovely rented flats before buying our current one. Moving between them was fine - good friends helped us, and we would end the day in the pub with food and pintage.
Things will not be thus this time round though. We will have to:
- Choose an estate agent with reasonable fees
- Work out what on earth a Home Report is
- Find a solicitor
- Actually finding a new place to live. Dear lord.
This is an utterly new exprience for us, and not one which fills me with enthusiasm. Will the house prices push us into negative equity? Will our house sell at all? Will there be ANYWHERE affordable to move to?If you have any words of wisdom, they are heartily welcome on the comments section below. If you would like to follow our progress in house-selling, house hunting, follow The Move category on the mamma blog sidebar.