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Jan 20

Going Green in a Rented Home

going green in a rented homeWhilst not having to suffer the burden of a mortgage weighing heavily over your head, living in rented accommodation can be truly frustrating. There is a sometimes overwhelming sense that you do not have complete freedom within your dwellings and are having to live by rules and standards set by another party.

One of the biggest restrictions felt by renting individuals and families is often the inability to be able make sufficient changes around the home to suit a lifestyle or improve the efficiency of the building. Installing double glazed windows or a new boiler is often subject to the approval of landlords, property managers and owners, making the whole process convoluted and difficult in the extreme.

Therefore, small changes that can be made around the home or for the home that could help save money and reduce energy consumption without the interference of other parties are always welcome.

Spend a free day checking that all of your kitchen appliances and white goods are thoroughly cleaned and operating at 100%. A refrigerator that is clogged with debris, may require extra energy to keep its contents cool. Similarly, a dirty oven may not operate as thoroughly through a film of grease, so your food may need to cook for an extra 10 minutes. Simply maintaining such units can help keep the energy efficiency at a premium and potentially lower you monthly bills.

By separating your cans from your milk bottles, you may think that you have got recycling covered. However, there is almost limitless potential to recycle everything in your flat. Carefully read any itinerary of contents that you will have signed when moving into a furnished home. If a coffee table simply is stated as ‘table’ with no description then you may be able to customise it to your personal taste without incurring the landlord’s wrath. A simplistic black high gloss table could be given a beautiful polish to add new life.

DFurniture Store Managing Director, Farzana Patel, is exasperated about the wasted furniture she sees every day: “I love turning old pieces of furniture into something new and it simply breaks my heart when I see tables or sofas left out in the rain to ruin, there is so much potential to turn the old into something beautiful.”

Meeting the neighbours provides not only great social possibilities but also an opportunity to reduce energy consumption. Having a social night once or twice a week can reduce the energy used by the households involved. Cooking for the group ensures that only one stove is turned on that night. Furthermore, everybody enjoying the Champions League final together is far more energy efficient than four separate televisions in four adjoining flats all tuned into the same channel.

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