There is a growing number of tenants on the lookout for environmentally friendly rental properties, and this trend is expected to continue with new developments.
By greening up your short-term rental, not only is your property more attractive for potential renters, but its market value can also increase. This is good news for real estate investors that are looking for an edge in the market.
Short-term rental platforms have been on the rise in recent years, and smart investors are taking notice. Tapping into this market has delivered above-average returns for many investors, but now the competition is heating up and you need to find ways to stand out.
Here are 12 ideas for making your property more eco-friendly to keep your short-term leases filled and encourage return visitors.
1. Go Green With Your Beans
Australians consume nearly 3 million coffee capsules a day! That is a lot of coffee and a ton of excess landfill. Plungers are a more eco-friendly alternative to a coffee machine, but if you already have one on your property consider reusable pods.
Crema Joe is one example of a progressive coffee brand that is making pods environmentally friendly. Their SealPod Nespresso compatible capsules will out-live your coffee machine!
2. Look Into HVAC Upgrades
Heating and air conditioning can be a major drain on utility bills, not to mention repeated maintenance repairs. Look to upgrade buildings with energy-efficient models that can work smoother, save money and provide more comfort to residents. Maintaining the evaporator coils and drainage channels will extend the life and depreciation cycle.
3. Use Solar Power For Outdoor Lighting
A well-lit parking lot and walkway give renters a sense of security, but those lights are not cheap to operate. Switch out pole lighting, porch lights and low walkway beams with energy-efficient solar fixtures. They can be designed to automatically come on during dark hours and go out during the day.
4. Insulate Where Necessary
Some older buildings were not designed to keep drafts at a minimum. An inspection of how well your buildings are insulated could point to needed upgrades. Get a professional opinion on the energy loss that can be prevented through new insulation, replacement windows and caulking up leaks.
5. Avoid Electrical Issues
An Arc Fault Circuit Interrupter (AFCI) or a Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter (GFCI) should be established in every rental unit. They can indicate problems from tree limbs or standing water that will cause surges of electrical power. Repeated surges will indicate that an electrician needs to be contacted. They also prevent renters from overloading outlets.
6. Install Energy-Efficient Water Heaters
Technology has come a long way in providing more energy efficient standards for water heaters. Everything from cutting back on unit size to installing on-demand hot water can cut energy costs by as much as 30% per unit.
7. Conserve Water
Toilets are water hogs. This can amount to a substantial water bill when multiple residents are housed. Ultra-low-flow (ULF) toilets can reduce water usage by up to 7 liters per flush. By changing out old toilets, you will also find that maintenance is decreased from parts wearing out. Replacing showerheads and faucets should also be considered. Make sure your water pressure is checked and set to the appropriate stream.
8. Stock Up On Amenities
Instead of stocking up your bathroom amenities with tiny plastic bottles, look to install big containers that last longer. Not only will this reduce the changeover time when you are cleaning the property for the next guest, but it will also prevent all of those little plastic bottles ending up in the ocean.
Take this way of thinking into the kitchen too. Use big glass jars for sugar, tea, and other kitchen amenities. And for sauces, oils, and other replaceables, buy them in bulk and make the most of cute looking refillable containers. Bulk buying will also save you money.
9. Spend a Little Extra On Organics
If your guests are environmentally inclined they will appreciate the little extra touches. There are lots of great chemical-free and organic products available on the market that you can use to re-stock amenities. Sure they’ll cost a little extra, but that 5-star rating will be worth it!
10. Use Programmable Thermostats
Tenants look for money-saving devices when considering a short-term rental. Being able to control the heat or air in a unit is a big factor. Adjusting temperatures through apps on smartphones is a new technology that many renters look for in comfort and control.
11. Green Up Your Exterior
Another way to keep your short-term rentals greener and more impressive is to use plants and trees for exterior landscaping. Trees are nature’s air filters for providing pure air and natural beauty. Use watering mechanisms that control the timing and flow of water for conservation.
12. Get Your Guests Involved
Being eco-friendly doesn’t all have to fall onto you as the property owner. Get your guests to help out and make a difference.
For example, encourage your guests to recycle and sort their waste by providing recycling bins and showing them where they are. You could also suggest to them to take public transport instead of driving everywhere, and provide a transport card they can top up as they go for the next guests.
Creating a reputation for having a functioning short-term rental with energy-saving devices will bring back renters time and time again.
If you want to take your eco-friendliness to the next level, consider working with a short-term property management service like MaisonNets to help out!