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    Energy-saving tips that can lower your utility bills

    Small changes can add up to big savings and reduce waste.
    By Airbnb on Dec 14, 2022
    3 min read
    Updated Dec 14, 2022


    • Stop drafts and install low-flow fixtures

    • Update large appliances and unplug small ones

    • Share your sustainability efforts with guests

    With energy prices rising, keeping your space comfortable for guests can prove costly. As a Host, you could ask guests to be mindful of their heating, cooling, and water use, but you shouldn’t rely on them to lower your utility bills. Taking steps to improve your space’s energy efficiency is a better solution. It can lead to big savings and help protect the planet.

    Airbnb is working with sustainability experts to give Hosts advice and resources to update their properties. To get started, try these tips from Energy Saving Trust, a U.K. organization that specializes in helping people reduce their energy use and greenhouse gas emissions.

    Stop drafts and install low-flow fixtures

    Guests typically expect a space that they can keep warm or cool, with ready access to hot water. You can meet their needs—and lower your overhead—by improving your property’s insulation and water efficiency.

    • Draft-proofing windows, doors, chimneys, gaps around pipes, and electrical outlets to prevent air leaks is an inexpensive, effective way to save energy in any type of home. Insulating film, caulk, foam gaskets, roller shades, and heavy curtains or curtain liners can all help stop leaks.
    • Insulating older water heaters to retain heat and adding a timer to avoid heating water when your space isn’t being used can help conserve energy.
    • Replacing standard plumbing fixtures with low-flow toilet valves, faucets, and showerheads can help cut back water consumption. Aerated showerheads mix air into water to retain high pressure while reducing water use by up to 4.25 gallons (16 liters) per shower. While you’re at it, regularly check for and repair any water leaks to prevent waste.
    • Cleaning only full loads in the dishwasher and washer/dryer with the machine set to a low temperature or “eco” mode can save both water and electricity. While prepping your space for the next guest, set out dishes and hang linens to air dry when possible.

    Anna, a Superhost and Host Advisory Board member in Newgale, Wales, uses insulating decor to help keep her cottages cozy for guests. “We’ve added rugs to old flagstone floors and lovely thick curtains that restrict drafts,” says Anna, who serves on the board’s sustainability committee. “Both add character to our rooms and help us save energy.

    Update big appliances and unplug small ones

    Many guests want amenities like a well-stocked kitchen and reliable wifi. You can reduce your electricity use without compromising your hospitality.

    • Switching light bulbs from incandescent and halogen to LED bulbs can save you from $4 to $16 USD per bulb each year.
    • Adding lighting sensors and controls, which are relatively low-cost and easy to install, can help make sure lights aren’t left on inadvertently. Motion sensors can save electricity by automatically turning lights on and off when they sense a guest’s presence.
    • Replacing larger appliances as they expire with energy-efficient ones can conserve electricity. Choosing a higher-rated refrigerator can have a significant impact on your energy bills over the typical life of the product.
    • Unplugging smaller devices, including phone chargers, when they’re not in use can avoid any drains on the power supply. Another option is to connect them to a power strip or smart switch that you can shut down remotely when your space is unoccupied. Removing various devices from constantly being in standby mode could help you save about 5% on your monthly electricity bill.
    “There’s so much that goes into cleaning and washing,” Anna says. “Using a well-rated washer and dryer is really important for me in terms of energy efficiency.”

    Share your story with guests

    The story you share in your listing description can help support your conservation efforts and shape your guests’ experience.

    “I think what actually makes a difference for us is making our ‘eco ethos’ really clear in our listing,” Anna says. “You can describe how you value sustainability and the things you’re doing, and then you get the match right with guests who care about the environment as much as you do.”

    Open communication also encourages guests to follow your lead. “Of course, we want guests to have a lovely, comfortable stay,” Anna says. “But setting expectations in our listing about how we’re trying to conserve energy helps to prevent unreasonable behavior, like whacking up the heat and then going out for the day.”

    These are just a few small steps you can take to help increase your space’s energy efficiency. Bigger moves, such as installing solar panels, replacing windows, and improving insulation, can help you conserve even more. The changes you make may be eligible for rebates, tax deductions, and other incentives.

    Learn more about sustainable hosting


    • Stop drafts and install low-flow fixtures

    • Update large appliances and unplug small ones

    • Share your sustainability efforts with guests

    Dec 14, 2022
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