Taking steps to make your home more energy efficient is always a good idea. Not only will you be doing your bit to combat climate change, but you’ll also be saving yourself a fair amount of money — and who doesn’t want that?
But with a hectic schedule to stick to, making your home more eco-friendly can sometimes slip down the priority list. You may even be unsure where to start, as there are a fair few energy myths out there that can cloud your judgement.
But luckily, HomeHero’s here to demystify the process with this handy guide on how to make your home more energy-efficient. Don’t sweat it; we’re here to help.
Talk to Your landlord
Before we get into the nitty-gritty, it’s worth highlighting that you’re well within your rights, as a tenant, to request energy improvements from your landlord.
Your landlord is also obliged to provide you with an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) before moving into the property.
It’s illegal for landlords to rent out properties with an Energy Performance rating lower than E. From April 1st 2020, this came into effect for all existing tenancies, so it’s worth checking this if you have any concerns.
It’s All in the Small Changes
The first step to making your home more energy-efficient is adopting small behavioural changes. While they may seem insignificant, these habits can make a big difference to your home energy expenditure — £30 per year according to Energy Saving Trust.
These simple, easy and cost-effective habits consist of:
- Switching off TVs, laptops, lights and other appliances when not in use
- Unplugging any unused cables from their sockets (Yes, really!)
- Choosing to wash the dishes by hand
- Only use the amount of water you need in the kettle
- Taking advantage of warm weather by airing your clothes out to dry
Be especially cautious of using radiators to dry your clothes in the winter months, as this will reduce the amount of heat released by the radiator.
As a result, your boiler will have to run for longer and therefore, burning a bigger hole in your pocket. Yeah…no thanks.
Invest in Energy-Efficient Appliances
Once your new, eco-friendly habits start to feel like second nature, you may want to consider investing in some energy-efficient appliances.
While it may feel like a big spend at the time, investing in such appliances will benefit you in the long run. Let’s take energy-efficient light bulbs, for example.
Switching up all your light bulbs from traditional incandescents to eco-friendly alternatives, such as LEDs, can save you up to £40 per year on home energy bills.
LEDs are the most common and adaptable, so be sure to check out your options to find the best fit.
Another energy-efficient appliance you can put in your shopping basket is a water-saving showerhead.
Believe it or not, power showers can equally use, if not more, the same amount of water than a bubble bath in just 5-minutes. And while we still consider showers as the ‘greener option’, this is pretty concerning.
That’s the aim of the game!
Revamp Your Space
While installing double or triple glazing for your windows or upgrading your boiler can be tricky for renters to achieve, for obvious reasons, there are still plenty of ways you can revamp your space to save on home energy — tenant style.
- Hang some thick curtains and blinds on all of your windows to prevent heat from escaping
- Use cheap, stick-on insulation strips or bubble wrap/cling film to weatherproof any draughty door frames or windows
- Placing a brush strip inside your letterbox to retain heat
- Rearrange your furniture, so they’re not up against any radiators
- Buy rugs to cover any cracks in wooden floors
In terms of upgrading your boiler, it’s worthwhile to check its rating before discussing anything with your landlord. Your boiler is rated from A-G, with A being the most efficient.
If yours falls on the lower end of the scale, then you should bring this up with your landlord and see if they’d be able to upgrade it. Remember, requesting this is well within your rights!
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