Thinking green is a springtime motto, but thinking green in terms of your home or rental property means choosing environmentally conscious options that reduce consumption and monthly bills. And while installing items like low-flow toilets in your rental property can save water and the environment, it will save your tenants money that can be used for rent. That said, here are some ways to green up your rental property:
- Installing low-flow toilets and shower heads can save thousands of gallons of water a year- just be sure your plumbing will work with whatever you install. Toilet performance should be assessed based on how well it removes waste with a single flush.
- Investing in Energy Star appliances (they make everything from air conditioners to computers and washing machines) can reduce monthly energy bills. Since the US government began the Energy Star program in 1992, consumers have purchased more than 2 billion Energy Star products, which resulted in a $14 billion savings in 2006 alone. These energy efficient models are rated based on guidelines, so find out which appliances would be best for your property.
- Switching to energy-efficient light bulbs is a great idea, and since ordinary incandescent bulbs will be phased out soon, it will be easy to make the switch. The question will then be which type of bulb is best. Compact fluorescent lights (CFLs) are smaller versions of fluorescent bulbs. They fit in a standard socket, but they contain mercury. Light-emitting diodes (LEDs) are more expensive than CFLs, but they also last longer. A LED bulb can save up to $40 in its lifetime, or $6 a year compared to ordinary incandescent bulbs. This is significant considering the average household uses more than 50 light bulbs to illuminate it.