28 Nov 2011
We all want to cut down on our energy and water use where we can, but while it is easy for homeowners to switch over to more sustainable fixtures and fittings in their homes, renters must keep their property as is, unless they obtain permission to make environmentally friendly changes from their landlord.
There are still things that renters can do to help live more sustainably though, so here are some tips if you want to become a greener renter:
Educate yourself – The first step to becoming a sustainable renter is educating yourself about what it actually means to be sustainable. Find out what behaviours support a sustainable environment and what habits you need to change in your lifestyle. A great place to find information is www.naturalstrategies.com.au.
Think about what you can do differently – Once you have educated yourself about what it means to be sustainable, take a look at your own habits and think about the things you can do differently both in your home and outside of it. For instance you might be able to buy better products or catch the bus instead of driving.
Use less utilities – You may not be able to change the fittings and fixtures in your home, but you can still cut down on water and energy use by being more vigilant. For example, turn lights off when you leave a room and don’t leave taps running.
Grow your own – One way to be more sustainable is to grow some of your own food produce. If your garden isn’t big enough to grow vegetables though, then you might like to grow herbs in a window box, pot or trough.
Chat to your landlord – Your landlord may be willing to make certain changes to the property to help make it more sustainable. Certain changes may be tax deductible anyway or help add value to the property, so discuss with your landlord any changes you would like to make. There are changes you might be able to make yourself too, such as installing water saving showerheads or tap aerators, but make sure you ask for permission if you would like to install any of your own sustainable products.