Fri 08 Feb 2019According to MoneySupermarket.com, a recent survey has found that one in three adults worry about how they will pay their winter energy bills, especially as this year’s winter weather predictions suggest we could be in for a repeat of last year’s bitter winter freeze.
As a landlord, ensuring your rental property is as efficient as possible should be a top priority, especially if you contribute towards some of the bills. Here’s some ideas to help your tenants keep their energy bills at bay, by increasing your rental property’s efficiency.
Provide thick or insulated curtains and blinds
Whilst it’s tempting to kit your rental home out with cheaper alternatives, providing thicker curtains and blinds to cover windows during the colder months will help to prevent precious heat from escaping. Similarly, purchase drafters or stick-on insulation for the sides and bottoms of any drafty doors or windows.
Swap your shower head for a water-saving model
This is such a quick and easy fix. Whilst showers beat baths in the race to energy efficiency, spending 20 minutes in a hot shower can use over 100 litres of hot water – oops. If you’re renting to families in particular, swapping your shower head for a water-saving version should be a top priority. Not only will this save your tenants money on their electricity and water bills, you’re helping the environment, too.
Fit double glazing (or secondary glazing, if your property is listed)
Properties with double glazing aren’t hard to find these days, so the likelihood is that you already have good quality glazing. However, if you don’t, your tenants would be amazed by the difference it could make to their annual energy bills. Obviously, this is not a cheap fix, but kitting out your rental home with double-glazed windows should be viewed as a long term investment.
If you’re worried about disturbing the look of your property by replacing classic, wooden windows with PVC, think again. Double glazing doesn’t need to ruin the look of your home – a variety of styles are available to suit any property. Make sure to look out for the ‘Energy Saving Trust recommended’ logo, as this will indicate the most energy efficient styles.
Make sure your home is insulated
Insulating your loft or any cavity walls can make a noticeable difference to the result of your EPC. Insulation is more affordable than ever before and is a highly effective way of retaining heat within a building. Uninsulated walls account for up to 33% of the heat lost in your home, so by filling cavity walls, you could save your tenants up to £180 a year and reduce your carbon emissions by a mile. The best bit? There are grants available to help make this investment more affordable – simply search ‘energy/insulation grants’ for more information on the Government website.
Arrange for your energy supplier to fit a Smart Meter
Smart Meters aren’t just smart – they can become addictive! Ensure your tenants can keep an eye on their energy consumption and, more importantly, what this means in terms of money. If you tenants can contextualise the cost of a lengthy shower or leaving the heating on all day, the chances are they’ll start to change their habits. Not only will this save money, it will start to greatly increase your property’s carbon footprint, so it’s a win-win!
Need more tips on how best to manage your rental property? For extra ideas or advice, contact Brown & Cockerill on 01788 551111.