How to lower your electricity costs in a rental

It’s no secret the cost of living is rising and electricity is among the daily essentials which now command a higher price tag.

Which begs the question, how can you keep your electricity bills down in a rental property? Here are our top tips for lowering your electricity costs in a rental.

Energy efficient appliances

As a rental occupier, you don’t necessarily have control of the building materials used, or insulation inside a property. But one area you can control is the appliances you purchase.

If you’re looking to lower your electricity costs, consider seeking out energy efficient appliances, particularly when it comes to the big-ticket electricity consumers such as fridges, freezers, washing machines and dryers.

The Australian Government notes household appliances account for up to 30 per cent of your home energy use.

Which means the type of appliances you choose and the way you use them makes a big difference to your energy consumption and bills.

Heating and cooling

Climate control has the potential to be a huge energy guzzler, but like all things it depends how you go about heating or cooling your home, and the way you use it.

If you’re running air-conditioning as a form of climate control, in winter set your heating thermostat to 18–20°C. In summer, try setting your cooling thermostats to 25–27°C. 

These settings help take the edge off the cold and the heat without consuming excess electricity.

Better yet, in summer, opt for fans over air-cons, and in winter set your fans to the winter mode if it’s available. This helps circulate any warm air that rises.

Seal the gaps

On that note, a huge amount of heating and cooling is lost due to gaps, draughts and the lack of window coverings.

Where possible, draught-proof the property with door snakes, door seals, and window seals. Close off areas which aren’t in frequent use, and consider adding window coverings like blinds or curtains to mitigate heat and cooling loss.

If window coverings aren’t installed at the property, you can talk to your property manager about the possibility of fitting them yourself or having the property owner install them.   

Standby power

The Australian Government notes standby power can account for 10 per cent of your household electricity use.

If you’re seeking to cut your electricity costs, consider switching appliances like televisions and games consoles off at the wall, rather than using the remote control or power button.

Energy-efficient lighting

Lighting can draw a surprising amount of power, particularly if you’re using old incandescent globes or fluorescent lighting.

Instead, opt for energy-efficient LED globes where possible. If the rental property features old-style fluorescent lighting, perhaps invest in lamps for a nicer ambience and reduced power consumption.  

Fridges and freezers

Fridges and freezers might be a necessity, but if they’re set to the wrong temperature they can draw unnecessary power.

The ideal setting for your fridge is between 3 and 5°C; or between minus 15 and minus 18°C for your freezer. 

“Every degree lower requires 5 per cent more energy,” the Australian Government explains.

Meanwhile, watch your freezer for frost build-up, and switch off any secondary fridges if they’re not required.

Washing and drying

When it comes to washing and drying your clothes, set the washing machine to cold water and use the shortest washing cycle available.

Where possible avoid using your dryer and instead opt to air-dry your clothes.

How we can help

Our experienced property managers pride themselves on establishing great relationships with both rental occupiers and owners.

We manage every property as if it were our own and you can learn more about our property management services here.

Alternatively, if you are looking to rent a property, you can view the properties we currently have available here.