Energy-saving help for renters

You may not own your home, but it's easy to make it more comfortable, save money and use less energy with just a few low-cost and no-cost changes. For starters:

  • Replace standard incandescent light bulbs with energy-saving compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs)
  • Install water-saving showerheads and faucet aerators
  • Clean or replace filters regularly to help your furnace, heat pump or air conditioner work at peak efficiency
  • Unplug battery chargers for power tools, mobile phones, laptops and other devices when not in use
  • Use a Kill A Watt® energy monitor to see where you can cut your electricity use—see a list of participating libraries with Kill A Watts available for check out
  • Ask your property manager to repair leaky toilets and faucets promptly
  • Keep cool in hot weather with these tips for beating the heat (PDF)

Download the full checklist and save even more. You can also recycle your old, working refrigerator or freezer (provided you own it, of course) and get a cash incentive.

Make the case to your landlord. If you rent an older house, condo or apartment, talk to your property manager. Larger improvements like insulation, energy-efficient heating equipment and high-efficiency windows could be an attractive investment for your landlord and further reduce your energy costs. Many energy-efficiency improvements qualify for Energy Trust cash incentives and state energy tax credits, which can make them much more affordable.

Attend a workshop. Portland-area renters can take advantage of free weatherization workshops hosted by the Community Energy Project. These hands-on workshops are open to everyone and cover low-cost energy-saving techniques, how to install draft-stopping materials and window kits, and where to find more resources. Weatherization materials are free to income-qualified households. Visit to learn more.

Investigate other resources: Oregon Housing and Community Services offers special weatherization programs for renters who meet income guidelines, but your landlord must agree to have the work done.

Do you rent a mobile home? Learn more about our energy-saving improvements you can receive at no cost, plus additional upgrades that can qualify for cash-back incentives from Energy Trust.

Looking to buy an energy-efficient home? Energy Trust Real Estate Professional allies can help you find a high-performing home. They can also direct you to resources for making energy-efficient improvements to any home you buy.