As a landlord, you may think that making energy-efficient upgrades is the tenant's responsibility. The fact is, however, many tenants first question to a prospective landlord is "How much are utilities bills?" By making your rental properties more energy-efficient, it will actually attract more tenants, while saving them some money on their utility bill. It's a win-win for both parties. Here we have 3 key energy improvement upgrades to make at your rental properties.
- Replace Air Filters: Even if your lease requires your tenant to regularly replace their air filters, many often forget or don't wish to spend the money to purchase new filters themselves. Replacing air filters helps the HVAC system to function properly, which will save wear and tear on the unit and promote energy-efficiency. Consider dropping off new air filters to your tenants. Each filter costs about $15, but it will save you and your tenants the most money in the long run.
- Upgrade Lightbulbs: Another important part of energy-efficiency, is remembering to turn lights off when you're not using them. Since you can't monitor your tenants use of lights, the best way you can promote efficiency is to replace outdated lightbulbs with new, energy-efficient ones. LED bulbs are great for rental properties as they use less energy, produce less heat, and last anywhere from 11-20 years depending on use. This saves your tenant money, and you have to replace lightbulbs far less frequently.
- Turn Down the Water Heater: This is one of the best ways to increase energy-efficiency, because it literally costs you no money, but saves your tenant a lot of money on their utility bill. Most water heaters default setting is 140 degrees F, but according to the Department of Energy, it best to lower it to 120 degrees F. This simple change can save your tenants, 6 to 10 percent on their energy bill.
Not only will energy-efficient upgrades save your tenants some money, it will increase your attractiveness to potential renters by showing them you genuinely care about your properties. Making these upgrades can also earn you tax credits and reduce your maintenance costs on the HVAC systems in your properties.