Person outside in wintertime.

How to save money on apartment utilities in the winter

December 20, 2019 8:36 pm Published by Leave your thoughts
Last Modified: March 26, 2024 6:02 pm
Reading Time: 8 minutes

Winter officially begins on December 21st, but your city or town has likely already experienced its first snowfall. Let’s face it, winter is already here. Many people get excited when winter comes because winter activities are endless. However, when winter comes, so do extra expenses. If you need helpful tips to keep your apartment utility costs low, look no further. Market Apartments has you covered!

Top contributors to high winter utility bills in apartments

Keeping our residences warm without going over budget becomes a primary responsibility when winter draws its cold embrace around us. The question is, what precisely drives up our power costs in the winter? In order to identify the true culprits behind those skyrocketing costs, let’s get right to the point.

The main focus of our winter utility bill drama is, first and foremost, heating. It goes without saying that warding off the cold can be energy-intensive, particularly in flats where insulation may be lacking. This scenario is all too common and a key factor in why you might see a jump in your bill. Regular maintenance of your HVAC system can significantly save money on utilities, ensuring it runs efficiently during the winter months.

Water heating accounts for about 18% of the energy consumed in your home, second only to heating and cooling. As the weather gets colder, people naturally want to take long, hot showers, which increases energy use. The primary energy consumer in apartments is space heating, with water heating coming in second. Higher energy expenditures are the result of combining this with a rise in the usage of electric blankets, space heaters, and maybe a little more baking or cooking to warm yourself.

Finally, appliances and gadgets are the silent energy consumers that are frequently disregarded. Yes, a lot of devices continue to consume power even when they are turned off; this is referred to as “vampire energy.” Every little thing counts, from your cozy movie evenings spent in front of the TV and gaming consoles to the constant buzz of the refrigerator full with festive food.

Don’t let extra winter expenses bring you the winter blues this season. Use these helpful energy-saving tips to save you money on your apartment utilities.

Invest in smart home technology

With so many Smart Home gadgets on the market today, there are many ways to use them to save money. The two categories that we’ll focus on is Smart Climate Control and Smart Lighting.

Smart Climate Control

Using Smart Climate Control is a great way to save on apartment utilities because it can learn your routine. Smart thermostat users save up to 15% on heating and 10% on cooling per year. This can translate into significant savings for apartment dwellers. It can be programmed to know when you’re home and need to utilize the heater, and when you’re not home, allowing you to save energy. You might also consider adjusting your thermostat settings when you sleep. Since you’ll be covered with blankets, you may not need the temperature as high.

You should think about combining weather-responsive smart thermostats with your Smart Climate Control system to maximize the energy efficiency of your flat. These gadgets make sure you’re only consuming energy when it’s essential by adjusting the temperature in your house based on the current weather. IFTTT (If This Then That) applets can also be used to automate energy-saving tasks, such lowering the thermostat on sunny, warm days predicted by the local weather forecast.

When transitioning from summer to fall, it’s crucial to adjust your thermostat settings to save on heating costs as the temperature outside drops

Smart Lighting

 LED light bulb.

Smart Lighting is also essential to energy saving. Using LED lights and other energy-saving light bulbs can significantly reduce energy costs and help you save on apartment utilities.  When you also use Smart Lighting, you can control when lights are turned on and off. Gone are the days when forgetting to turn off the lights becomes a problem. Now you can set your lighting preferences to turn on and off automatically. This is especially helpful around the holidays!

LED bulbs last up to 25 times longer than traditional incandescent bulbs, reducing the frequency of replacements and energy savings.

Because we’re writing this blog for apartment renters, we made sure to do our research! There are some smart gadgets that you may need to get approval for, but most can be removed easily and taken with you when you move! Philips Hue is a great brand to look into, as you may not need permission at all. 

Use traditional methods to save money on apartment utilities

If you’re not quite ready to spend money on Smart Home technology, you may need to do it the old-fashioned way, which is tried and true anyway, so we know it works! Here are a few ways to reduce your energy manually.

  • Take advantage of the sun. Open your blinds during the day and allow the sun to naturally heat your apartment.
  • Stop cold drafts from entering your apartment. Make sure your front door has weather stripping to prevent the cool air out.
  • Line your windows and sliding door with a layer of plastic film and /or use thick curtains.
  • Take faster showers.
  • Bundle up. Utilize your warmest pajamas and wear a hoodie. Bring out those cozy blankets and socks, so you’re comfortable with the heater being at a lower temperature.
  • Reverse your ceiling fan blades so that the hot air is pushed back down to warm you up.

Use Space Heaters in the rooms you frequent the most.

You can also save on apartment utility costs by using space heaters in the rooms you occupy the most. Studies have shown that when used properly, space heaters are significantly cheaper to run, vs. running a furnace. Why? Because you only use it when you’re home and awake. If you work all day, and only use a space heater for a few hours each night, we’re talking big savings!

Be Aware of Vampire appliances

Vampire appliances were most commonly known as microwaves and toasters silently using unnecessary electricity and driving your electric bill up. Now, along with those appliances, we have computers and gaming systems like your Xbox or PlayStation that could be costing you when they’re not in use.

The average household spends approximately $100 per year powering devices that are turned off or in standby mode. This phenomenon, known as “phantom load,” can be costing you a lot unnecessarily.

So, what’s the solution? Unplug and /or turn them off when you leave. You can invest in modern power strips that can turn off numerous devices with a single switch and have smart capabilities to immediately cut off power to devices in standby mode to counteract the sneaky energy drain caused by vampire appliances. Whichever equipment are costing you more can be found by routinely checking your energy account for any unusual rises. When paired with other energy-saving techniques, just changing this can result in considerable financial savings.

Maximizing insulation without major renovations

The idea is that without extensive improvements, tenants cannot considerably increase the energy efficiency of their apartments. It isn’t like that. To improve the insulation in your apartment and keep your utility costs down while staying warm, there are a number of ingenious and landlord-friendly solutions.

Sealing gaps around windows and doors is one of the most effective energy saving tips for apartments, preventing heat loss and reducing your heating needs.

Think about installing detachable window insulating kits. For retaining heat indoors throughout the bitterly cold winter months, these kits are revolutionary. Renters will find them ideal as they are simple to install and uninstall. Next, pay attention to the effectiveness of door draft stoppers.

Drafts can waste 5 to 30% of your energy use. Simple fixes like weather stripping can lead to noticeable savings on heating bills. This is a simple yet effective way to keep cold air from creeping in: just slide one under your door. Last but not least, carpets and rugs improve your room in ways more than just appearance.

They can serve as extra insulation by being carefully placed on floors, greatly lowering heat loss. When combined, these strategies provide a comprehensive strategy to reducing winter utility expenditures without requiring the use of a hammer or drill. They bridge the gap between high-tech solutions and conventional approaches.

Budgeting for Apartment Utilities

Your apartment utilities will likely not be the same every month, but you can make a conscious effort to keep them low. Make sure you set aside enough money to cover your apartment utilities before your energy-saving tactics. That way, you’ll be pleasantly surprised at the money you don’t have to use. Apartment Renters may also want to consider renting with communities that have utilities already included in the rent price. Either way, you can help reduce energy with the above tips, and if everyone in your community did also, that could mean lower rent for you.

Energy-saving resources & rebates

Still looking for ways to lower your winter utility costs? You’re in luck since there are a ton of services and initiatives available exclusively to apartment residents like you. You may find lots of information on energy-saving techniques that can significantly reduce your monthly energy costs on websites such as Energy Star and the U.S. Department of Energy. They take care of everything, from fixing leaks around your windows to maximizing the efficiency of your heating system, to make sure you stay warm without going over budget.

This is where it gets really good: government rebates and programs. A lot of people are unaware that both local and federal governments frequently provide incentives for living energy-efficiently. If paying for utilities is becoming difficult for you, there are programs like the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) that can assist. Then there are financial incentives for investing in eco-friendly home upgrades or buying energy-efficient appliances. These can reduce the up-front expenses and increase the affordability of energy-saving upgrades. It’s like getting paid to reduce your monthly expenses!

Visit the database of State Incentives for Renewables & Efficiency’s (DSIRE) website to find out what’s available in your area. Enter your zip code to view a list of all available rebates and incentives. Recall that every little amount helps. By utilizing these resources, you’re improving the planet’s health in addition to saving money. It’s a win-win scenario that is well worth investigating.

Did you know?

Signing a new lease in the wintertime can save you money. Many apartment communities are running move-in specials specifically for this time of year! If you’re looking for an apartment that better meets your needs, check out our Apartment Search Page. You’ll find plenty of apartments to choose from, and you can find them based on your preferences!

Did you know that keeping your apartment at the right humidity level can help you save money on your heating bill? Air with a higher humidity feels warmer than dry air at the same temperature, so you can lower the thermostat. Portable humidifiers or indoor plants can naturally add moisture to your apartment’s air, making it feel warmer without increasing the temperature.

Did you know that using your oven in the winter helps to heat your apartment? The residual heat from baking or cooking may slightly raise the temperature in your apartment. To maximize this benefit, bake during cooler times of the day and leave the oven door open after use to let warm air into your space.

For more tips on apartment living, visit our website and find us on social media! We’re always coming up with apartment tips and hacks because we want to make your apartment living experience a good one.

With these helpful tips and suggestions, you may improve your winter utility-saving strategy and enjoy more comfort, cheaper energy bills, and a more ecologically responsible lifestyle. This article provides practical solutions that go beyond standard advice, offering novel approaches to increasing energy efficiency in your home. They provide residents with the tools and knowledge they need to efficiently manage their winter utility expenses using a combination of technology and easy household upgrades.

If you have even more suggestions on how to save energy and on apartment living in general, leave us a comment! We would love you hear your thoughts!

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This post was written by

Isabella Housel

Isabella Housel is a passionate and versatile professional writer with a deep love for words and a commitment to crafting compelling content that engages, informs, and inspires. With many years of experience in the industry, she has honed her skills across various genres, from creative storytelling to informative articles and technical documentation.

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