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Learn from our property management experts!
The world is continuously evolving into a more environmentally friendly one, and we’ve made some amazing strides in electronics and appliances. Even if you’re renting, you usually still have to pay your own utilities. Choosing an updated apartment with energy-efficient appliances is crucial for saving money on your monthly bills. Did you know that older appliances often consume more water and energy than the newer models? The U.S. Department of Energy now requires manufacturers of all major home appliances to have their products tested for energy efficiency. The test results are then printed on yellow and black EnergyGuide labels, which list how much energy the appliance uses and what the annual operating costs may be. Products with the EnergyGuide results in the top 25 percent are awarded the Energy Star Label. This is what to look for when touring prospective units. Apartments with Energy Star appliances may charge a bit more in rent, but they can save you a lot of energy and money in the long run.
Refrigerators are the main energy consumers in a kitchen, so you’ll want to stick with the one that is included in the unit if you are looking to be energy efficient. This means no specialized refrigeration units for wine or other beverages that consume large amounts of additional electricity. Keep in mind that through-the-door ice makers and water dispensers require more energy.
Did you know that the washing machines that have earned the Energy Star label have cut energy and water consumption by more than 40 percent compared to conventional washers? This is achieved by rubbing and spinning clothes through a small amount of water and spinning the clothes to the point they need less time in the dryer. Unfortunately, this cannot be said for dryers. All of the models have pretty much the same energy consumption. Energy can be reduced by line drying clothes as much as possible.
According to the Department of Energy, Energy Star rated dishwashers use at least 41 percent less energy than the federal minimum standard. These dishwashers also use less water, and the water that they do use doesn’t need to be as hot. Increase energy saving by running only full loads and letting dishes air-dry than relying on the in-unit drying option. An Energy Star rated dishwasher requires much less water than hand-washing dishes.
Ovens, stovetops, and ranges are available in gas or electric operation models. It’s important to remember that gas stovetops use less energy than electric ones, but they release carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, and nitrogen dioxide into the air. If you fall in love with a rental with a gas stovetop or range, make sure there is a hood ventilation system included.