As a tenant in a rental property or co-living space, you may think that there’s little you can do to live a sustainable life since you don’t own the property. However, you can still play your part to be kinder to the environment even if you’re room renting.
Utility bills are included as part of the room rental rates in most co-living lease contracts. In the midst of rising energy prices and higher cost of living, you are getting a good deal by not having to fork out extra for utilities.
But just because you don’t have to pay for utilities doesn’t mean that you can leave the air-conditioner running the whole day long. You have a responsibility not consume huge amounts of energy.
As a tenant, here are some simple ways where you can be kinder to planet earth, reduce your carbon footprint and manage your energy consumption.
One of the easiest ways to be more environmentally-friendly is to practise recycling. Most apartments and condos have recycling bins. So do make the effort to separate your trash and deposit recyclable items like newspapers, cardboard and glass into the recycling bins.
2. Buy refills
When shopping for bathroom products such as shampoo or body wash or other liquid products such as laundry detergent, opt for refills instead. This is less wasteful and kinder to earth as you won’t have to ditch large plastic packaging after you’ve finished using the product. Better yet, why got go the eco way by using bar soaps instead of liquid body wash.
3. Buy less
Every year, tons of unwanted items end up in landfills. The solution to reducing landfill waste: buy less. Before you make any purchase, think about whether you absolutely need it. Besides, your room rental only has so much space. If you go on a shopping spree every weekend, you may not have much storage left in your rented room.
4. Buy second hand
If you absolutely need to buy something, why not opt for second hand. Thrifting and buying second-hand clothes are getting more and more popular these days. You get to save money due to their bargain prices. Plus, by reusing items, you’re saving them from ending up in the landfill. Check out Carousell listings which have a great assortment of second-hand items.
5. Be water smart
When showering, try to conserve water. Turning your shower head to the lowest flow is one way. Or you can also turn on the shower when you need to wash off your soap. While soaping yourself, turn off the shower to conserve water. If you’re able to shower with cold water especially during the hotter month, why not? This can save energy as you don’t need to use the heater.
6. Use the washing machine when it’s on full load
Washing machines consume a lot of water. Therefore, it’s more energy-efficient to run the washing machine when it’s on a full load. Another energy-saving tip: use cold water whenever possible for your wash. You can also adjust the settings on the washing machine to quick wash or eco mode, if your laundry is not too soiled.
7. Unplug appliances when not in use
Whenever you’re not using appliances like your computers, gaming consoles or television, do unplug them and turn off the switch. This is because keeping them plugged in will continue to draw energy, even when they’re not being used.
8. Use the fan instead of the aircon
When the weather is hot, especially during the middle part of the year, it can be especially tempting to have the aircon on at full blast all the time. However, the aircon consumes a lot of energy. A fan uses a lot less energy. If your room has a fan, you may want to turn on the aircon for a short while and then switch to a fan. This will continue to keep your room cool.
9. Switch to energy-efficient appliances whenever possible
If some of the appliances or fixtures such as lightbulbs, refrigerator, washing machine or dryer have almost reached the end of their useful life and need replacing, convince your landlord to opt for energy-efficient replacements instead.
As a tenant, you can make simple changes to your daily lifestyle to reduce your environmental footprint. All of us can play a part in being kinder to the environment.