Rather than reduce their household heat consumption during the energy crisis, which may become fully apparent in winter, the Czechs will cut back on entertainment and shopping. This is according to a recent survey commissioned by IKEA.
Nearly half (49%) of the survey’s 800 respondents said they typically heat their homes at 21 to 22 degrees. They do not want to change this in the upcoming heating season, which has already started in most parts of the Czech Republic.
Forty-two percent of people do not intend to lower their home’s temperature, while 29 percent are willing to lower it by one degree. At the same time, Czechs do not count too much on buying products that can help reduce heating bills, such as blackout curtains.
39% of respondents stated that they are willing to lower the temperature when not at home and at night when there is typically less heating. Only 6.5 percent of respondents intend to lower the temperature in their homes significantly.
However, most Czechs would instead forgive themselves for buying things they do not need as much instead of lowering the temperature in their flat or house. 68.5 percent of the survey participants said they would save money on buying new clothes or electronics instead. Sixty percent of respondents want to save money on entertainment, specifically limiting cultural and sporting events or holidays.
Thinking about what to use for heating
Instead of spending on things they don’t necessarily need, people are forced to think about how they will save on energy bills or what they will use to heat their homes in winter. Due to high energy prices, there is a growing interest in wood, coal, and alternative energy sources.
Half of the people building houses are interested in heat pumps and 42 percent in photovoltaic power plants, according to a survey of a builder of wooden homes in Rýmařov. However, the Czech Chamber of Chartered Engineers and Technicians in Construction warns that the wrong way of using and operating a heat pump can increase energy costs instead of a reduction.
Families dissolve financial reserves
More and more households are running into problems with their budgets – as energy and food costs have risen and, in many cases, mortgage payments have increased.
According to Česká spořitelna data, which accounts for the decline in purchasing power or the varying size of individual household budgets, 7% of Czech households have no financial reserves, and another third have them for less than one month. Meanwhile, according to economists’ recommendations, a household that enjoys financial health should have a three-month reserve to cover expenses.
“This requirement is not met by 55 percent of households, 57 percent of which are already starting to reduce their reserves,” says David Navrátil, an economist at Česká spořitelna.