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9 Simple Updates to Increase Energy Efficiency in Your Rental

You may feel that investing in energy efficiency for your rental properties is not the best use of time and money. After all, you are not the one living in the property and, therefore, will not reap any of the benefits. However, you couldn’t be more wrong. Today, we’ll go over nine ways to increase energy efficiency in your rentals and why it’s important for both you and your tenants. 


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Why Focus on Energy Efficiency?

Energy-efficient updates to your rental become very appealing selling points when it comes to advertising your vacancy to interested tenants. And, chances are good, you and your Northern Virginia property management company will deal with fewer vacancies if you try to increase energy efficiency in your rental.

There are several simple and cost-effective ways to update your rental properties to achieve the energy efficiency tenants love. In the past, we have looked at some easy energy-saving tips for landlords looking to lower their tenant’s utility costs.

Today, we are taking that a step further and offering simple updates that will lower utility costs and drastically reduce your tenant’s carbon footprint.

9 Ways to Increase Energy Efficiency in Your Rental Property

Luckily, you can take several small steps as a landlord to increase energy efficiency in your rental property. Whether you implement simple upgrades, like power strips, or take it a step further by installing a tankless water heater, there are plenty of benefits to both small and large upgrades. Here are nine of them to consider!


  1. Window Treatments
  2. Power Strips
  3. Air Conditioning Shade
  4. Exhaust Fan Covers
  5. Door Sweeps
  6. Programmable Thermostat
  7. Plant Trees and Shrubbery
  8. Go Tankless
  9. Install Ceiling Fans

Window Treatments

Caring for your property’s windows by re-sealing cracks can help keep the heat in during cold winter months and thus save on energy bills. However, if your windows are outdated or not working properly, it is important to update your rental property’s windows.

Not only does this help lower the energy bill, but it also makes your tenants more comfortable during the winter. No one wants to live in a drafty rental property.

Power Strips

Though including these in your rental home is definitely not a necessity, doing so is a simple and inexpensive update that has the potential to go a long way with your new tenants.

Most tenants may not realize just how much energy their dormant electrical devices (think appliances, televisions, computers, etc.) use throughout the day, even when not in use.

You can significantly reduce energy usage and your tenant’s power bill by providing power strips for areas in your rental that have multiple devices plugged in at once (whether they are being used or not).

Plus, making your tenants aware of such a simple energy efficiency strategy will surely be appreciated.

Air Conditioning Shade

If your rental is the type that has a window-mounted air conditioning unit, create a way to keep it shaded at all times. This shade will ensure the unit stays cool even in the middle of summer, thus allowing it to run more efficiently.


Shading your air conditioner will also make sure that the unit only runs when the rental needs cooling, not when the air conditioner itself does.

Exhaust Fan Covers

Retain more heat during winter and lower the heating bill for your tenants by installing inexpensive exhaust fan covers in your rental kitchen and bathrooms. Not only will you lower the drafts of cold air coming in, but you will also prevent warm air from escaping.

Door Sweeps

If your rental property doesn’t already have them, or they are long overdue for a change, consider installing fresh new door sweeps to all doors leading to the property’s exterior. This includes the front and back doors, as well as the door leading to the garage and the garage door itself.

Again, preventing drafts of hot and cold air from entering the property in the dead of winter or the midst of summer will reduce energy costs, which are already soaring during those prime times of the year.

Programmable Thermostat

Many tenants, whether searching for an eco-friendly rental property or not, love to see programmable thermostats in a rental property.

That’s because it is a well-known fact that over 40% of a tenant’s monthly utility bill money will go towards heating and cooling their rental property.

Programmable thermostats make reducing tenant energy costs very simple. All your tenant has to do is program the thermostat to work around their schedule so that the air or heat units do not run when no one is home.

And, as a way to feel extra cozy or cooled off right before returning home, the thermostat can be scheduled to turn on just before your tenants enter the door.

Plant Trees and Shrubbery


Providing a backyard oasis is something many rental property owners have in mind when it comes to drawing in high-quality tenants searching for the best-looking properties full of amenities.

Take advantage of the fact that your tenants want greenery in the backyard, and work to strategically place trees and shrubs in areas that will help shade your property. This greenery will help insulate your rental from wind, cold, and heat.

Go Tankless

Installing a tankless water heater in your Fort Meade rental is a great way to save on water usage, energy usage, and space. And, while some models are not inexpensive per se, the long-lasting benefits and savings of going tankless might convince you to invest a little more upfront:

  • They only heat and deliver water when requested by tenants
  • Many states offer rebates for going tankless since it’s a green option
  • Lifespan far surpasses that of traditional storage tank water heaters

As you can see, many benefits accompany the installation of a tankless water heater in your rental property.

Install Ceiling Fans

While ceiling fans do not change the temperature in the room, they definitely circulate the air enough to provide a cooler sensation. Ceiling fans also give rental properties a boost when it comes to visual appeal.

Because ceiling fans are able to cool off your tenants during the hottest summer months without wasting energy (like an air conditioner might), they are great for increasing energy efficiency in your rental.

Get Help From the Professionals

Altogether, making your rental property energy efficient is not tough to do. It doesn’t always require a lot of time, effort, or money. Energy efficiency benefits your tenants and gives you more leverage when it comes to advertising your property when it’s vacant.

Need More Advice? contact us today!

If you own a rental property in Northern Virginia and need help devising simple ways to increase energy efficiency or want an experienced property management group to professionally advertise your vacancy, contact Bay Management Group today.

Not only can we help with staging your rental to be as energy efficient as possible while keeping overhead costs under control, but we can also help cater to prospective tenants who are looking for environmentally friendly rentals. Contact BMG today to learn more about our services throughout Baltimore, Philadelphia, Northern Virginia, and Washington, DC.