In the affordable housing space, there’s a lot of talk about improving ROI by reducing energy. But in this article, we’re not going to ramble about the importance of managing your investments, or even the need to please your residents and save the planet (though all important causes, of course).
Instead, we’re going to offer four quick actionable tips for energy saving and show you how you can use a core hub solution to make the process of implementing them easier… Let’s dive straight in.
- Conduct an energy audit
To determine where you can save energy, work out your baseline consumption by looking at your bills and comparing to industry standards on sites such as ENERGY STAR’s Portfolio Manager.
You can identify obvious places where your properties may be losing energy yourself (such as drafty windows and, you know, holes in the walls). However, it’s important to be aware that many multi-family properties lose energy in areas that aren’t immediately obvious. You can find these out by using a professional body so it’s worth investing. Some energy companies even offer free audits.
- Implement upgrades
There are some easy changes that you can make to your properties right away that won’t break the bank, but will improve energy efficiency. Take a look into:
- Energy-efficient LED bulbs or retrofit kits
- Occupancy sensors that sync to turn energy or lighting off when residents are not home
- Hot water controls that set temperature schedules
Optimize maintenance processes
An effective maintenance process can prevent infrastructure issues before they become costly or consume a lot of energy. For example, by proactively looking and cleaning at your HVAC system rather than waiting for a component to wear down, you can ensure it operates at peak performance.
To manage maintenance, it’s a good idea to use a centralized property management tool (such as Fortress) that provides an instant overview of work order software. In one dashboard, you can see up to date property information, create work orders, and update residents of ongoing maintenance concerns.
If your residents don’t know about energy saving schemes, it’s pretty difficult for them to get involved. This can lead to increased bills and unnecessary waste.
Use your property management operating system to keep residents in the loop about important updates and initiatives. For example, you could send out a text with a link to explain how residents can adjust their thermostat settings. These messages can foster a sense of community and create an energy-efficient culture.
Fortress makes regularly updating residents easy with SMS texting right from the main dashboard. Get in touch to find out more about our core property management operating system.