Wednesday, 12 May 2010

Make your holiday home more cost effective

Staysure the travel and property insurance company offer the following advice about making holiday homes more cost effective.

No matter how much we enjoy work there comes in time in most of our lives when we start to make plans for retirement, for some it can’t come soon enough, whereas others are quite happy to continue to a reasonable age. There lies the rub, what constitutes a reasonable age?

But seriously, that shouldn’t deter home owners in warmer climes from looking at ways to curb wasting water and energy. If saving the environment doesn’t give you a warm fuzzy feeling, then look at it as a way to cut your bills.

Domestic appliances, particularly older models account for up to 16% of water used in the home, with washer-dryers taking top position as the main offender, followed closely by washing machines (half-loads), showers and flushing the toilet. However, there are lots of ways to reduce the amount of water used without impairing performance. Here are some simple ways to improve energy and water efficiency without breaking the bank.

A water closet that won’t waste water
Flushing the loo can use up to 9 litres of water. But don’t panic, this can be reduced by around 3 litres by inserting a ´hippo´ (essentially a heavy hardwearing bag) in the cistern. Alternatively, if you plan to re-do the bathroom buy a ‘low flush’ loo.

Invigorating yet efficient showers
Regular shower heads can use up to 9 litres of water per minute. The obvious solution to saving water is to take shorter showers or take less of them, none of which are a particularly popular choice. A less intrusive approach would be to fit an energy efficient shower head designed to regulate the flow of water. The same theory can be applied to taps. And voila!

Dripping taps waste cash
To the casual observer a dripping tap is nothing more than a minor nuisance but not particularly serious. On the contrary dripping taps can waste up to 15 litres of water each day – water you are paying for but not using.

Energy efficient dishwashing
It’s more cost effective and energy efficient to use the dishwasher than wash large quantities of dishes by hand. Music to every washer-uppers ears - end of!

Re-use water in the garden
When a garden needs water it isn’t fussy about where the water comes from; baths, washing up or rinsing it’s all the same, just remember to let it cool down first. The best time to water plants is in the morning or the evening after the sun has gone down, preferably using a watering can instead of a hose pipe.

If you would like more information on how to save money, water or any other green energy measures check out the government website at:

Staysure’s holiday home insurance also provides a way to save money without sacrificing quality. Choose comprehensive cover buildings, contents or both and you are guaranteed great value prices plus you can avoid unnecessary and potentially costly misunderstandings which can occur when dealing in a foreign language*. All policy documents are written in English, English 24-hour helpline and English claims department!

*Staysure’s holiday home insurance covers property in Bulgaria, Cyprus, Eire, France, Greece, Italy, Portugal, Spain and second homes in the UK. For more information visit the Staysure page at the jmlp-property-insurance website

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