Energy-saving solutions for renters
No matter if you rent or own, there are many things you can do to lower your energy costs. Use these tips to save energy and stay warm this winter.
We provide many of the products below free of charge for income-qualified Vermonters. Contact our customer support team to learn more.
- Upgrade the lights you use most often (start in your kitchen). Local retailers sell many styles of energy-saving LEDs at discounted prices. Also, we offer free CFLs at food-shelves around the state—supported through our partnership with the Vermont Food Bank.
- Use faucet aerators and low-flow showerheads. Water conservation devices maintain water pressure while using less water, and reduce the amount of hot water you’re paying to heat.
- Use advanced power strips. Most electronics—such as TVs, computers, and game consoles—draw power even when they’re turned off. Advanced power strips eliminate this wasted electricity.
- Choose ENERGY STAR® certified electronics. Appliances and electronics that are ENERGY STAR certified meet strict energy efficiency guidelines set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. An ENERGY STAR certified TV, for example, uses about 40% less energy than a standard model.
- Add weather-stripping to doors and windows. Weather-stripping is inexpensive and easy to find at your local hardware store—and it makes your space more comfortable while lowering your energy bills.
- Use space heaters and air conditioners sparingly. These appliances add a lot to your electricity bill—hundreds of dollars every season. If you use an air conditioner, make sure it’s sized appropriately. And if you can’t avoid using space heaters, give us a call. There may be other solutions for staying warm in the winter.
- Check your heating and ventilation systems. Are they being regularly serviced and maintained? If you have a forced-air system, you can vacuum the vents and ducts on your own. Good maintenance boosts system performance, reduces your bills, and improves air quality and safety. And if your system isn’t keeping you warm enough, talk to your landlord (or to us) before adding space heaters.
- Talk to your landlord about long-term investments. Tell him or her about any issues you experience, and explain that you’d like to save energy. When appliances need replacing, request energy-efficient models. We can point your landlord to rebates, or even free products, that make it financially viable to upgrade.
- When apartment hunting, think about energy efficiency. Ask to see past utility bills and look for ENERGY STAR certified appliances when you do a walk-through. And if possible, request that energy-efficient upgrades be made prior to signing a lease.