As a Northern Virginia real estate investor, there are many benefits to making your investment property energy efficient. Your tenants will appreciate the savings and your dedication to the environment. Learn a few great ways to make your house more energy-efficient in our latest post!
When your rental property is energy efficient, you’ll be able to attract the eye of more potential renters. Not only do people like the savings they’re likely to receive, but they’ll also like the fact that they are helping the environment too. Below are a few great ways landlords can make their rental properties more energy efficient in Northern Virginia!
A great way to save water is to install low-flow faucets, shower heads and toilets throughout the home. Look for fixtures with the WaterSense label to ensure you are getting a product that can really save water. For a few dollars, your tenants will be able to save money all year, and you will be doing something great for the environment.
If the property has a garden or many plants requiring water, it might make sense to collect rainwater as opposed to always running the hose. Some areas don’t allow this, but other areas encourage it. Before putting in any permanent fixtures. be sure to find out what is acceptable in your area.
Seal Off Windows
Cool air seeping in, warm air leaking out… having a drafty home is not only costly but also annoying. You’ll never feel as if the house is the right temperature. One part of a room may feel warm, while another feels much cooler. It can get old fast but can be fixed relatively easily. With a quick trip to the hardware store, you can find weather stripping for the doors and windows. They even offer window insulation kits to help make the process easier. Another way to save energy involving your windows would be to invest in some high-quality shades to block drafts and keep the house warm or cool depending on the time of year. Remember, you are dealing with tenants, so if you make the investment in professional shading, ensure you have tenants that will treat them well.
Swap Out The Bulbs
Sure, the bedside table light should be your tenants responsibility, but the difficult to reach lights and lights in bathroom, kitchens, canned ceiling lights, bulbs in the kitchen, and any light that is apart of a permanent fixture, should be swapped out for a low energy, long lasting bulb before the tenants move in. Let the tenants know that the property is equipped with these bulbs and hopefully they will follow suit, using energy-efficient bulbs in their personal lighting fixtures as well. It’s a small change with a low cost and big impact.
Add Solar Panels
This may not be cheap up front, but it will benefit you, your tenants, and the planet in the long run. In many areas, there is also the added benefit of selling your surplus energy back to the utility company. And who doesn’t want the electric company to pay them for a change? There are also tax incentives available for owning a home using solar power! For example, this year, you are able to deduct 30% of the installation costs!
When installing solar panels to your home, you’ll want to make sure they are properly maintained. While rain can clean off some things, it pays to have them serviced once in a while. Sometimes pests and debris can wedge their way between the panels and roof, so if is wise to add screening or have a pro come out every so often.
Energy Star Appliances
There is no need to go out and replace all of your appliances right away, in fact, that’s kind of missing the point. However, as replacements are required, be sure to only purchase only Energy Star appliances to help save money on operation costs, without sacrificing on quality. Energy efficient appliances will use anywhere from 10-50% less energy than standard appliances. And should you ever decide to live in the home yourself, you’ll be able to experience the direct benefits as well.
As more and more people realize the effect our everyday lives have on the environment around us, the more people are willing to change. Making these small improvements to your home will help you do your part and help you to attract environmentally conscious tenants. Even if your tenants are “environmentalists,” they are guaranteed to love the additional savings that comes with an energy efficient house. With lower water bills, electric bills, and gas bills, your tenants will have an easier time paying rent, keeping them there for the long-term.