Nearly a quarter of UK employees say they will not turn the heating on while working from home this winter due to worries around the cost of energy, according to research from Electric Radiators Direct.
Following the return of work-from-home advice and Plan B measures to tackle the Omicron variant last month, the radiator business surveyed nearly 2,000 British workers who have been working from home.
The company’s findings revealed people were concerned about how staying-at-home will affect their energy, with many taking measures to try and lower the costs this winter.
Its data suggests 22 per cent of employees said they will not turn their heating on at all while working from home this winter.
Almost half (48 per cent) are looking to be more mindful of their overall energy consumption, and nearly a fifth (one per cent) claimed they will invest in smart heating solutions to better monitor energy usage this winter.
In terms of geographical differences, employees in the South East are most concerned about winter energy consumption while working from home.
Over half (51 per cent) of respondents said they will be more mindful of how much they use, followed closely by respondents in South West (50 per cent) and Scotland (49 per cent).
Concerns over the costs of working from home follow soaring wholesale gas prices that have caused carnage in the market. The consumer price cap has risen to £1,277 per year for average use, a 12 per cent increase introduced last October, with a potential 50 per cent hike on the way in April.
The comparatively small October increase in energy bills has already caused the cost of remote working, which includes the average cost of running appliances and devices for a regular working week, to reach £90.64 per month, or £1,088 per year.
By comparison, the worker spends just £64 a month commuting – meaning working remotely could cost people almost £30 extra every month.
These growing financial worries make returning to the offices and lifting Plan B measures all the more urgent.
Stephen Hankinson, managing director at Electric Radiators Direct said: “Our data has shown that the energy price hike will push the majority of the nation to be more mindful of their consumption overall, while some will look to invest in smart heating solutions.”
He pointed to potential cost-cutting measures for home-workers such as smart electric heating solutions, which users to control temperatures and make sure unused rooms aren’t unnecessarily heated.
Hankinson added: “While this is harder to do with gas as it predominantly uses centralised control, meaning all of your radiators are managed collectively, choosing a lower thermostat temperature that still feels comfortable can be a good way to keep costs down.”
This advice is likely to be more warmly received than Ovo Energy’s recent tips for its SSE customers, recommending people to eat porridge, cuddle puts and do star jumps to save money.
Ovo Energy later retracted the link and apologised for the much-criticised advice.