Apartment Living BlogApartment Living › Easy Ways to Cut Your Energy Costs In Your Rental

When living in an apartment, it can often feel like your energy usage (and consequent cost) are out of your control. Afterall, you can’t install insulation or swap to energy-efficient appliances, and you might not even have access to your temperature controls or water settings. Nonetheless, there are things you can do to decrease your energy consumption. Try these 8 renter-friendly fixes to cut your energy usage and ultimately lower those utility bills!

Swap Your Light Bulbs

Switching to LED or CFL bulbs can save energy and money in the long run. Switching out all the bulbs in your entire unit will have the biggest impact, but even just swapping the ones in your floor and table lamps can help. Don’t want to fork over the cash for more expensive bulbs for a short-term rental? Simply unscrew the energy-efficient bulbs and take them with you (just be sure to store original bulbs so you can replace them before moving out!).

Insulate Your Outlets

Outlets are one of the most common sources for losing cold/warm air to the outside. Thankfully, they are easy to insulate with a screwdriver and off-the-shelf products from the hardware store. Be sure to turn off the power before getting started, and then use this tutorial to halt the airflow!

Seal Up Drafts

Air can also seep in around windows and under doors. Use inexpensive caulk to seal up casings, or instal renter-safe plastic coverings for windows that are especially drafty. Draft stoppers for under doors help keep a rental toasty (in winter) or cool (in summer); they are easy to find or DIY.

Make Your Windows Work

Windows can be utilized to help cool or warm your rental, which can then reduce the burden on your heater or AC. In winter, keep windows closed but open any curtains or blinds during the day to allow in as much sunshine and warmth as possible. At nighttime, close heavy curtains over windows to keep the warm air in. In summertime, close shades and curtains during the day to keep the house cool, then open everything up once the sun goes down to take advantage of cooler temps.

Use Your Fans

If your rental has fans, use them year round. On a regular (counter-clockwise) setting, fans help circulate cool air and move warmer air up. In the winter months, reverse the fans to a clockwise rotation (there is usually a switch that says “reverse”) to push warm air back toward the floor. Just be sure to keep fans on low to prevent them from creating a cool breeze.

Clean Out Vents & Registers

As a renter, you may be relieved of some common maintenance tasks such as landscaping, pest control, roof and gutter maintenance etc. However, it is usually the tenant’s responsibility to clean out and/or change vents and filters throughout the unit and on appliances. Dust buildup on vents, coils, and registers can often require cooling and heating systems to use extra energy to maintain a specific temperature. Make cleaning them part of your quarterly routine to keep them running efficiently year round.

Check out more ideas for making your appliances more energy efficient!

Embrace Textiles

If your rental often feels cool and drafty, consider using fabric and other textiles in as many places as possible. Examples include heavy curtains on the windows, thicky rugs on the floors, and upholstered furniture. Hanging fabric or other thick coverings (e.g., quilts, blankets, tapestries, etc) on the walls and even ceiling are other creative options. Not only will the weight and texture of these items help you feel cozier, but they will absorb warmth and keep the cold out!

Unplug Unused Electronics

Small electronics and appliances are often one of the biggest energy drains, even when they aren’t in use. Get in the habit of unplugging items after you’re done with them in order to tighten up your electric bill. If you find regularly unplugging items a nuisance, consider using power strips to make powering things on and off as easy as single switch.

Need more ideas? Check out these water and energy saving tips!

Just because you’re a renter doesn’t mean you can’t reduce your energy footprint. These 8 tips are fully renter-friendly, and most can be implemented with little effort and cost. Start with easy ones like unplugging your electronic items and using your fans, and progress to others as you have time and money to do so. Over time, the changes will add up and you’ll ultimately reap the rewards come bill pay day!

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About :

Hi, I'm Megan...wife to a U.S. Marine and mom to a high-energy baby boy! We are a military family, moving into our 5th home in 8 years! I started this blog as a way to chronicle the various "homes I have made" over the years, as well as to be a resource for ideas, tips, and tricks for making any temporary space a cute, cozy and comfortable home! I hope you'll stay a minute, take a look around, introduce yourself, and hopefully...find something you like! Have a great day!

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