By Fiona Jameson
When thinking of the best green products for the home, many householders consider whether something which allows them to generate their own energy might be a good idea. Solar panels, wind turbines or equipment to generate hydroelectricity are all very tempting options but how much money can they save you? The truth is that they can actually earn you money as well as save it.
The fact that these devices are relatively expensive means that there is a lot of thinking to be done before investing in any of them. However, one issue that could make it a far easier is the FIT scheme. FIT stands for ‘feed in tariff’ and is a wonderful incentive for families to produce more green energy at home. If you have been thinking about buying electricity generating equipment but don’t know exactly how it benefits you, the following points should help explain it all.
Don’t Pay for Your Energy
Clearly the first benefit to producing your own electricity at home is that you no longer need to pay for the energy you use there. Upon first inspection, it might appear that the initial expense for the equipment makes it impossible for it to be cost-efficient. Having said that, in the case of solar panels some experts have worked out that the money you save on your bill could see them pay for themselves in 8 to 12 years. However this payback period is dependent upon a number of factors, such as the amount of energy produced by a house. This varies according to where the house is located and in which direction the panels are facing. The amount of electricity consumed in the house is also a big factor to be taken into account when you work out the potential saving. Wind turbines and hydro electricity generating machines can vary even more in the rate at which they save you money and let you recoup the initial investment. Some sources indicate that these can take between 5 and 10 years to pay for themselves while others are less optimistic. Regardless, the benefits of these systems for taking advantage of natural sources of energy are clear. However, choosing the right one for you will mainly come down to the initial cost.
Get Paid for Generating your Own Energy
Another interesting benefit to generating your own energy is that you get paid by your UK energy supplier for every unit of energy generated at your home. This is a huge advantage under the FIT scheme and can lead to a big earning for homeowners who are able to generate a lot of electricity. With solar panels in particular now being less expensive than before this can result is a very attractive return in little time.
Sell the Excess Energy to the Grid
What about those households where they generate more electricity than they consume? This is great news both for them and for the planet. The financial benefit in this case comes from the customer’s energy supplier buying the surplus energy off them. The amount sold on in this way depends upon how much is generated, but not used in the owner’s house. This means that the earnings can vary greatly from one house to another and from one year to the next. However, under the FIT scheme the energy supplier guarantees to buy this excess energy for the subsequent 20 years. This also means that the grid gets cleaner as more renewable energy is added to it, reducing the reliance on fossil fuels.
Who Can Take Advantage of This?
With more and more UK householders now taking advantage of this green energy scheme it is clear that it is an attractive option for many families across the country. Any family wanting to live a more environmentally friendly life while earning extra cash at the same time should be interested in finding out about this scheme. It is important to remember that the more energy the equipment can generate, the more money it will makes for its owners. This means that, as mentioned previously, it is a smart move to work out the most abundant natural resource in the area. Contrary to what some people think, a solar panel system can work very effectively in the UK. The country might not have a tropical climate or wall to wall sunshine but neither of these things are necessary to generate energy in this way. Even on a cloudy day they can produce energy if they are properly located. South facing panels are ideal but they don’t have to be placed in this direction if they can’t be. Of course, other parts of the country have everything necessary to provide plenty of wind turbine generated electricity or hydroelectric energy.
There are plenty of ways to save money on energy bills without having to invest lots on new technology. The npower site provides some good tips for cutting down on energy usage and helps homeowners break down energy usage by device. However generating your own energy by taking advantage of renewable sources will provide the biggest impact on your bills. It is therefore highly recommended that you consider this option to reduce your energy bill in the long-run.
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