A recent survey of 2,631 renters revealed that 69% of people would be interested in living in an energy-efficient building. As a landlord, “going green” can help attract more high quality tenants. And since that same survey indicated that 52% of those interested in eco-friendly living would be willing to pay a premium for it, making your property more environmentally friendly could put more money in your pocket long-term. Not sure where to start? Here are five quick and easy ideas to try.
Switch to LED
One of the easiest yet most impactful ways to reduce energy usage is to swap out conventional lighting with more energy-efficient LED bulbs. These specially designed bulbs provide the same style and look of the classic incandescent bulb, but require much less electricity to produce light. (This energy savings calculator will show you exactly how much you and/or your tenant could save by making the switch.)
Install Programmable Thermostats
Another simple yet impactful modification you can make to create a more eco-friendly environment for your tenants is to install programmable thermostats. Rather than leaving the heat or A/C going all the time, these thermostats can programmed to automatically turn off during non-peak hours, such as overnight or during the day when your tenants are at work. Programmable thermostats are also great for commercial landlords, or when heating or cooling costs are included in the rent.
Go with the (Low) Flow
In America alone, each individual person uses an average of 88 gallons of water a day at home. That consumption can be reduced by up to 20% just by installing water-efficient fixtures and appliances. For instance, you can switch out sinks, shower heads and toilets for more efficient models. Likewise, look for dishwashers and washing machines that are certified energy efficient. Not only will this dramatically reduce waste, but many of these products offer rebates and tax incentives. Win-win!
Caulk and Insulate
There are many areas of a home or apartment where excess energy can escape, such as the windows, attic, basement or garage. When this happens, tenants end up having to use more energy to keep the property at a comfortable temperature. Installing new, energy efficient windows is a great idea, but if it’s not in the budget, the next best thing is caulking the existing ones. Also, make sure the areas mentioned above are properly insulated.
Implement a Recycling Policy
It should go without saying that recycling is one of the simplest and most effective ways to preserve the environment. Best of all, it won’t cost you a dime. Start by educating your tenants on which items can and can’t be recycled. Then, make it as easy as possible for residents to participate in the program by supplying special bins or receptacles that are dedicated to recycling and arranging for pickup on a weekly basis.
An eco-friendly rental property can help you attract better tenants to your building. Beyond this, it’s just the responsible thing to do. Reduce your carbon footprint, do your part and help your tenants do theirs by putting the five simple changes above into action today.