Rental Efficiency Tips

    Need a printed version? Renter’s Guide in a pdf file

    Air Conditioning

    • Set thermostat settings as high as possible while maintaining reasonable comfort levels while you’re home and 84 degrees when you’re away.
    • For windows that receive direct sunlight, keep shades closed during the day.

    Heating

    • Set thermostat settings at 68 degrees while you’re home and 60 degrees when you’re away.
    • If you have a heat pump, avoid changing the thermostat temperature more than two degrees at a time during heating season unless you are going to be away for several days. Otherwise the “emergency” or “auxiliary” heat will come on which costs more. Generally this shouldn’t come on unless it is less than 20 degrees outside.
    • For windows that receive direct sunlight, keep shades open during the day and close them at night.

    Controlling the Air Flow

    • Close fireplace damper when not in use.
    • Don’t block vents and radiators with furniture, curtains or rugs.
    • Leave interior doors open as much as possible to promote good airflow.

    Water Heating

    • Reduce the temperature setting on your water heater to 120 degrees or less.
    • Wash clothes in cool or cold water whenever possible.
    • Take 5 minute showers instead of baths.

    Appliances and Lighting

    • Clean the coils on the bottom or the back of your refrigerator regularly.
    • Set the temperature for your refrigerator to 37 to 40 F degrees and 5 F degrees for the freezer. 
    • Inspect and clean your dryer vent pipe on your dryer periodically. Clean lint filter before each load.
    • Scrape your dishes rather than rinsing them before putting them in the dishwasher.
    • Run washer, dryer and dishwasher only when you have full loads. Air dry dishes instead of using the drying cycle feature.
    • Replace frequently used incandescent bulbs with LED or compact fluorescent bulbs.

    Electronics

    • Set your computer to enter sleep mode after 5 minutes of inactivity and to go into standby mode after 30 minutes of inactivity.
    • Unplug lap tops or cell phone chargers when not in use. They draw power even when nothing is plugged into them.
    • Since some electronics, like gaming systems, use electricity all the time, plug them into a power-saving electric strip or turn a regular strip off when the appliances are not in use.

    Check with your landlord about these projects

    • Replace the heating and cooling system’s filter every three months or when dirty.
    • Caulk window and door frames on the exterior. Consider using plastic window kits for single pane windows.
    • Replace weather stripping on exterior doors.
    • Check door bottoms and thresholds to make sure air is not escaping. Replace when necessary.
    • Install foam gaskets behind light switches or outlets located on exterior walls.
    • Drain a quart of water from the water heater every 3 months to remove sediment.

    Need more rental housing information? Check out midmohousing.com for helpful consumer information, rental laws and fair housing initiatives.