Unless you’ve been living under a very convenient rock this year you’ll have concluded that Christmas this year isn’t going to be a typical Christmas.
Depending on the vulnerability of family members and the tier we find ourselves in, Christmas 2020 is going to be a much more subtle and restrained affair.
No extravagant parties, no Christmas Eve curry nights and no trips to the pub to celebrate with friends. No, we’ll all be spending Christmas this year at home.
That means, of course, that you better get started now preparing your home for what could be a very difficult festive season. So here are a few tips to help you lay the foundations for a comfortable COVID Christmas.
Working from home
Many of us have enjoyed the freedom and reduced stress that can come with working from home but it also means we’ve been using more resources than we typically would. This is particularly true as the winter sets in and minus-degree lows become commonplace.
It might prove tempting, but one of the worst things you can do is keep your heating on all day. Set a timer on your boiler so it comes on in the morning just for a few hours. And then do your best to conserve that heat.
Plugging the gaps
You may assume your home is completely air-tight but you’re probably wrong. Take a finger to the corner of your window frames and the bottom of your doors and you might be shocked at how much rogue air is making its way through.
Draught-proof strips are the obvious solution here but even covering it up with thick curtains (windows) or bunging a thick cloth under the gap (doors) will do in a pinch.
Prioritising the rooms
There’s probably only going to be a maximum of six people coming for Christmas dinner this year – so you’re unlikely to be spread out across the house.
Maximise the amount of heat in the rooms you’re going to be spending time in by turning down the radiators in the spare rooms and conservatories (for example) to get that valuable warmth where it needs to be.
Keeping it sensible
Most UK thermostats hover somewhere around 20 degrees Celsius which is about as warm as a typical spring day.
You’ll be just as comfortable, however, at around 18 degrees and you’ll save a lot of energy and money by dropping the dial just a couple of cheeky degrees.
Heat is a funny old thing – it needs space to grow and settle. If you have a massive settee parked right in front of the radiator then it’s going to be blocking most of the heat from reaching the rest of the room.
Not only that, it’s probably not doing the back of the settee much good either. So, make some space in your room, particularly around the radiators, and allow the heat to permeate effectively.
Doubling down on festive fun
Lighting is expensive and having a house full of Christmas lights whilst also using the ceiling lights, floor, and table lamps means more wasted electrical energy.
Don’t try to find a middle ground. If you want to go all-in with the Christmas lights then use the Christmas lights as lighting rather than as ‘accentuations’.
It will also have the added benefit of giving your home a distinctly festive atmosphere and this year that could make all the difference.