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Energy Savings For Renters

You don't need to own your home to lower your energy use.

Using Less Energy In Your Apartment:

Lots of energy-saving solutions like adding insulation, upgrading your heater, installing efficient appliances or using smart thermostats are best made by working with your landlord, rather than paying out of your own pocket.

However, there are steps you can take for little or no out-of-pocket costs that can help lower energy use. We have tips that can help you keep your energy use down and your home comfortable.


  • Use the locks on windows and sliding doors to ensure they are shut and sealed.
  • Keep your curtains and blinds open on sunny days so your heating system won't have to work as hard to keep you warm. 
  • At night, use heavy, insulated curtains to keep the cold air out. You could also consider using indoor window insulation kits or weather-stripping for extra insulation on leaky windows.

Advice on sealing windows and doors for winter.

Stopping devices from using extra energy.


  • Make sure you're shutting lights off in rooms that are not in use.
  • For lamps you own and will move with, make sure you're using ENERGY STAR® certified LED lighting.
  • For celling fixtures or lights you don't own, consider using LEDs and taking them with you when you move.


  • Finding the best temperature for your thermostat can have a big impact on your heating costs. recommends setting your thermostat to 68 degrees in the winter and lowering it at night or when no-one is home.
  • Take a look at your thermostat to see if it has programmable settings to turn your heat down at time you know you won't be needing it.
  • If you do not have a programmable thermostat, consider other ways to remind yourself to turn the heat down when no-one's home. Maybe a reminder in your phone, a note by the door or incorporating it into your nightly routine.

Using a smart thermostat to lower energy use.

Before You Sign Your Next Lease

  • Confirm that your unit has a separate utility meter that is not connected to common areas that are not included in the lease.
  • Discuss energy efficiency opportunities at the time of lease negotiations — this is the best opportunity to get upgrades in writing.
  • Ask for the building’s power bill summary in advance, to better understand how much energy the building is using, to help make your case. 
  • Ask your landlord if they have had the home weatherized.
  • Ask the landlord when they last replaced appliances and heating and cooling systems.
  • Check for signs of inefficiencies. Frost on windows, excessive icicles outside, water stains on the ceiling and hot water that runs out quickly are all indicators of room for energy efficiency improvements. If you're not touring the building in the winter, ask the current tenant.

Working With Your Landlord

Energy efficiency upgrades can add value to a building, increase comfort for tenants, reduce energy use in communal areas and increase building safety.