If you’re covering the utilities on your real estate investment, it’s imperative to get your tenants on board with your energy-saving and water-conserving goals. Consider this – annually, individuals use around 29,200 gallons and 10,909 kWh of energy. That amounts to thousands of dollars!
Even if you don’t pay for your tenant’s utilities, as a real estate investor, you have a duty to be as responsible as possible in matters that involve the environment. If you’re lucky, your tenants will be on board, but if you’re like most investors, you’ll have tenants that aren’t bothered by their skyrocketing bills.
The good news is that you can encourage your tenants to lower their energy and water usage. Although you can’t put a stop to their consumption, you can take specific steps to make it easy for them to take part in your mission to protect the planet.
In this post, we’ll take a look at the things you can do to encourage your tenants to save water and energy in your rental property. These are all tried and tested tips from our professional property management agents.
How to Encourage Tenants to Save Water
Lowing the water usage starts with helping your tenants understand why it’s important. You may think they don’t care about it because you’re picking up their bill, but you shouldn’t assume that all of your tenants feel this way.
As an example, you could explain to them how their water consumption directly relates to the cost of the rent. This will convince tenants whose priority it is to save to start lowering their water usage. On the other hand, if your tenants are young professionals, you can motivate them to lower their water usage by showing them statistics about the environment.
Once you get your tenants on board, you can start sharing step-by-step tips on how to lower their water consumption.
#1 Install Low-Flow Showerheads
If you’re remodeling your bathroom, you may want to change the showerhead to a low-flow one. You can’t control how long your tenant takes a shower, but you can control the flow of water. It works by allowing the water to pass through tiny holes (like a spray), making it seem like the water pressure is strong.
#2 Monitor Your Toilets
We’re not kidding – you can actually monitor your tenant’s toilets. Keep in mind that toilets waste up to 200 gallons of water per day, so it would be in your best interest to keep tabs on whether or not your toilets are in good working order. You’ll be alerted in case there are issues with the toilet like leaks, problems with the fill tank, and the like. It can aid you or your luxury home management company in conducting inspections.
#3 Install Low-Flow Aerators
Low-flow aerators for faucets are like low-flow showerheads. They restrict the flow of water without lowering the water pressure. Remember, people are prone to running the water while they brush their teeth. A tamper-proof low-flow aerator for the faucet can reduce the water that they end up wasting.
#4 Remind Your Tenants
Chances are, your tenants will forget about your water-saving goals, so you’ll have to remind them multiple times. If you’re an investor of a multi-family property, ask your property management company to post flyers in common areas, and email tenants “hacks” on how to save water. If your community’s efforts have paid off (i.e. your water bills have substantially lowered), show your tenants your appreciation to encourage them to continue their practices.
How to Encourage Tenants to Save Energy
If you’re dealing with indifferent tenants, you’ll have to explain your energy-saving goals to get them on board. If they know why it matters to you and to them, they’ll be more likely to work with you. Here’s how you and your property management company can encourage your tenants to lower their energy usage:
#1 Switch to Energy Star Appliances
If your rental property is furnished, consider replacing your appliances with ones that have the Energy Star rating. This is because the Energy Star brand has been certified to be more energy-efficient. If not, you can convince your tenants to purchase Energy Star appliances through incentives, such as a discount on their rent or even free rent!
#2 Install Smart Thermostats
With a smart thermostat or a Wi-Fi thermostat, your tenants can change the temperature even when they’re away. All they have to do is to install an app on their phone! That way, they can turn off the thermostat when they’re not at home, and turn it back on when they’re about to return. This will give them complete control over their home’s heating and cooling, and help you in your energy-saving goals.
#3 Install LED Bulbs
It’s about time that you replaced your rental property’s bulbs with LED lightbulbs. Light-emitting diode (LED) lights can save you an average of $10-$20 a year as they use 75 percent less energy than a regular incandescent lightbulb. This is because they use about 11 to 12 watts to generate light, while an incandescent bulb would use about 50 watts. What’s more, LED bulbs don’t “burn out”, so you and your property management agents probably won’t have to replace them for over ten years!
#4 Conduct Routine Inspections
When appliances aren’t in good working order, they can drain energy. That’s why it’s important to conduct routine inspections. If you’ve hired a South Florida property management company, they can oversee the inspection and make sure that nothing goes unchecked. They’ll also set a reminder for when certain appliances need to be repaired, maintained, and more.
Even if your tenants have no financial obligation to cover their utility bills, you can still get them on board by educating them about the importance of saving water and energy. That way, you can substantially lower your bills and contribute to the global sustainability goals.
Contact the experts at Luxury Property Care for expert advice on how you encourage your tenants to be responsible with their water and energy usage. We’d love to help you achieve your water-saving and energy-saving goals.