It’s not easy to go green–especially if you are a tenant in a rental property.
Going green means to become more environmentally aware and changing your habits and lifestyle to make a positive impact on the environment. Some of those changes can be made in your home but as a renter, you have limits. Your landlord may not jump on the idea of installing a cooler roof–or more efficient windows. Therefore, you have to think creatively when considering green home upgrades for your rental.
The good news is, there are plenty of economical ways to make your home or apartment more green and your landlord pleased with what you’re doing on their property.
Unplugging what you aren’t using will save you a ton of money. Those small appliances, computers, and lamps are like vampires and drain money right out of your pocket. So make sure to turn them off and in some cases, unplug them when you aren’t using them.
Apply weather stripping
Should you get the go-ahead from your landlord to do more with your rental, the application of weather stripping to doors and windows is a clear-cut way to make your home more green. Sealing gaps around doors and windows can make your home feel warmer—and save you 10 to 15 percent on your energy bills.
Switch out your old light bulbs
You know those light bulbs you’ve been buying at the store for decades? It’s time to switch them for Compact Fluorescent Lamps (CFL). The U.S. Green Building Council says that despite being a bit more pricey, “replacing the old lightbulbs in your house with CFLs dramatically reduces your energy consumption—ENERGYSTAR®-qualified CFLs use approximately 75% less energy than traditional incandescents!” So basically, lamps last 10 times as long as light bulbs and save you money long after you’ve paid a little extra upfront.
Be more water-conscious
You’re probably not going to install a low-flush toilet or faucet aerator into someone else’s home, but there are other things you can do. You could spend a few less minutes taking a shower or bath to conserve both water and heat. Or, you could –ahem–let it mellow when yellow, but flush it down when it’s brown–as the old saying goes. You could also water your new herbs and plants with bath water, yes people do this.
Bonus suggestion: Talk to your landlord
You may be surprised at what your landlord might do if you’re interested in ways you can save money on their property. Who knows; you might find other ways to save money that hadn’t occurred to you before and cut down on energy costs across the board. Just remember, a property manager can’t always make decisions on behalf of the property owner. A happy renter makes for a happy landlord, which means he or she gets his rent on time–thanks to the energy-saving, cost-cutting measures you’re making.
What would you add to this list?
We are pledged to the letter and spirit of U.S. policy for the achievement of equal housing opportunity throughout the Nation. See Equal Housing Opportunity Statement for more information.