It is becoming more and more important for individuals to live a more green lifestyle. In 2008, Popular Science Magazine ranked the Top 50 greenest U.S. cities and Fort Worth, TX ranked fifteenth on that list.
It is becoming more and more important for individuals to live a more eco-friendly lifestyle. In 2008, Popular Science Magazine ranked the Top 50 greenest U.S. cities and Fort Worth, TX ranked fifteenth on that list. These rankings were based on raw data from US Census Bureau and the National Geographic Society’s Green Guide, which collected survey data and statistics for cities with a population over 100,000. The categories analyzed include electricity use, air quality, and transportation habits.
Many times, apartment dwellers feel more helpless than homeowners in controlling their environment and how it impacts their carbon footprint. Homeowners have much more control on the type of appliances purchased and also can make even more drastic changes to their home in order to conserve energy. Since renters don’t make decisions on the type of air conditioning units, water heaters, or other major appliances that decide how energy-efficient the unit is; it can seem like there isn’t much you can do to be more “green”. There are, however, several other ways that renters living in Fort Worth apartments have sustained a green lifestyle. Here are some simple ideas that will assist you in living a green lifestyle while in Fort Worth, or any other city.
1. First and foremost, communicate to your landlord how important green-living and reducing your carbon footprint is to you. In addition to requesting energy-efficient appliances, share eco-friendly tips with your landlord and suggest that it is shared among the entire apartment community. Many times, apartment communities have a monthly newsletter or similar publication that is perfect for this type of information.
2. Use green products, like energy-efficient fluorescent bulbs instead of incandescent bulbs. While these light bulbs cost more than the typical incandescent bulb, they can last up to ten times longer and only use 1/3 of the energy as incandescent bulbs. You can also remove them and take them with you when you move. Just be careful when packing them and make sure your replace any light fixtures with incandescent bulbs or you could be charged for those by the apartment community.
3. Change out your air conditioning filter on a regular basis. You may not have access to this so ask your property manager how often the a/c filter is changed. It should be done at least once every six months.
4. Use power strips in order to reduce the amount of phantom energy wasted. Phantom energy occurs when appliances and chargers are turned off, but still plugged in and drawing power fro the outlet. In the average home, this can account for as much as 40% of the energy bill. These electronics include televisions, DVD players, game consoles, microwaves, and AC adapters for cell phones or other electronics. When you are done using electrical devices simply switch off the power strip to keep them from drawing more power.
5. If you have a washer in your apartment, using cold-water washing can save as much as 80% in energy used on laundry. In addition, only run full loads of laundry in order to be the most efficient.
6. Recycle whenever possible. If your apartment community does not participate in a recycling program, make this a priority for your landlord or management company by suggesting it. In the meantime, find your nearest recycling drop-off center and encourage your neighbors to recycle at those locations as well.
7. Conserve water by reducing the time spent in the shower and by not leaving the water running when brushing your teeth or washing dishes.
8. Turn down your thermostat by two degrees in the winter and increase it by two degrees in the summer. By doing this, you can reduce the amount of carbon dioxide by 2,000 pounds annually.
9. Buy environmentally safe, biodegradable cleaning and hygiene products.
10. Buy a green, PVC-free or nylon shower liner.
If you are going green and need help finding a green friendly apartment check out UMoveFree.com, the number one source for apartments in Texas. Read one of our reviews or visit the signup on the website to start your apartment search.
Nick Barber is a licensed real estate broker and the President/CEO of UMoveFree; one of the largest apartment finding firms in the multi-family industry. Visit UMoveFree.com for more information on apartments in Fort Worth.