How to be Sustainable with Rising Energy Costs

Energy costs are continuing to rise and it can be daunting for holiday home owners and travellers. Whether you want to save money by reducing outgoings, or contribute to a more sustainable environment, here are some things you can do to manage increasing costs and how to help the environment.

By Kate Wilkinson, Content Marketing Executive 

How can I be a sustainable home owner?

Not only is sustainable tourism great for improving your carbon footprint, but marketing your property as an eco-home can be a great USP for attracting a new segment of guests. Increasing numbers of holiday-makers are choosing to look for green accommodation, our partner channel Booking.com carried out a survey on Earth Day which found that 83% of travellers think sustainable travel is vital; and 41% of respondents agreed that there are not enough eco-friendly options for holidays. Read on to discover quick fixes which can make your home more eco-friendly and have a lasting impact. 

Energy saving appliances

Investing in energy-saving appliances can be a long-term win for you as a host and the environment. For example, switching to LED lighting or similar energy efficient bulbs could save you up to £232 a year according to Which? When it comes to heating, there are many options available to help warm up your home, especially in the winter months. Installing double-glazed windows and strengthening insulation can improve your EPC rating and you might even qualify for help with the costs. You can find out if you qualify for an insulation grant through the government Energy Company Obligation scheme. 

In recent years smart heating options have hit the market, with remote heating options changing the way you can monitor heating. The Hive thermostat allows you to control heating from your phone, wherever you may be. Hive estimates that you can save around £110 a year by never heating an empty home. This is a great option for holiday home owners who do not live close to their rental properties, especially if the property is not occupied for a long period of time. For a more traditional approach, a plug-in timer can regulate heating and lighting just as efficiently! Other everyday appliances can also be replaced with more sustainable options, such as energy saving kettles or energy efficient fridges; which over time can save you money and the planet.

Eco-friendly products

Having sustainable products in your property can help reduce the use of harmful materials such as plastic. For self-catered property owners, to quickly and easily reduce plastic usage, you can benefit from putting water filter jugs and reusable bags out for guests who need to bring their own supplies. If you provide cleaning and bathroom supplies, check out eco-cleaning brand smol; where you can shop a wide range of eco-friendly cleaning products, from sustainable detergent to refillable soaps. These products are fantastic for hosts who have the possibility to clean their own properties also, which is more cost-effective than outsourcing cleaning which often comes with costly fees.

Providing a welcome pack is a nice touch for guests when they arrive at your property, we recommend including helpful bits of information about the area and maybe even a small welcome gift to make a great first impression! For this, you could source local produce from independent businesses, which may also encourage guests to also shop there during their stay. Similarly, try promoting the use of public transport and sustainable activities in your welcome guide.

How can I travel sustainably as a guest?

We recommend owner and guest communication prior to any stay, so your host may have already made you aware of how they are contributing to sustainable tourism in their welcome email. Have you ever considered reaching out to your host after your stay? There’s a lot on value in leaving reviews, but you may also want to consider letting your host know of any eco-friendly fixes they can make. For example, if you didn’t make use of the expensive TV package, you might not be the only one! Cutting back on unnecessary outgoings could be really beneficial for a holiday home owner.

Recycling on holiday

It’s easy to forget about the basics when you are on holiday and outside the comfort of your own home. Make an environmentally conscious effort to find out how you can recycle in your vacation rental and the local area. For hosts – why not try using eco-friendly bin bags as well having clearly labelled recycling bins? We recommend reading this insightful article about recycling and the importance of encouraging it in a holiday let by another of our partner channels, Airbnb.

Don't waste any time or energy!

The Energy Saving Trust estimates that around £3 million is wasted by holiday makers who leave lights or electric plugs switched on. Again, this is something you may forget about when you are in someone else’s home, but would you do it in your own? As well as using less electric where possible, The Wildlife Trusts ‘ways to converse water’ guide explains how to conserve water in a home. Some hosts may ask you to indicate if you haven’t used any linen or towels to help with water conservation; but if not, you may want to leave a note letting them know that there is no need to wash or replace certain items where it can be avoided.

For additional advice on how to conserve energy and save money, you can visit the government website for guidance.

Airbnb have written several other useful guides which outline how hosts can be more sustainable should you wish to do any further reading on how to improve your Airbnb listing and make it more sustainable. You may also want to explore green tourism – who offer advice for business owners who are looking to go greener, they even reward those who already have! Do your bit to help the planet whilst cutting costs for your holiday home. 

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