It’s getting cold outside, and there’s a growing need to keep our homes warm. No one likes to pay high energy bills, but it frequently happens when the mercury drops. Heating and lighting during winter are two major causes of spikes in energy bills, but there are solutions out there.
Making your strata more sustainable benefits all residents but also saves money for the strata scheme as a whole. Alongside community gardens as eco-friendly installations for pleasure and food, here are some tips for staying sustainable in winter.
Use motion sensor lights
Motion sensor lights, or smart lighting, can be installed in all common areas of a strata building. The benefit here is that lights are only turned on when there is movement in a certain space, whether it is the hallways, gyms, pools, car parks and more. This saves energy and therefore reduces expenses for everybody.
Where safety is a concern, such as in underground car parks, you may like to keep lights on all of the time. However, for most common spaces, motion sensor lights are the perfect solution.
Use energy-efficient heating
While you can’t control how many electric heaters and other costly appliances people use in their homes, you do have control over the heating in common spaces. Heat pumps are generally considered the most cost-effective method of heating, but the reality is most buildings probably have ducted or central heating.
If you want to save even more money, consider using timers to ensure the heating isn’t running all day and night. Alternatively, consider bringing in a HVAC expert to recommend more affordable heating systems.
Keep doors and windows closed
While this is a great recommendation for all owners and tenants within their homes, windows should be closed in common spaces. The same applies to doors throughout the building. The less cool air you let inside the building, the less your heating system has to work. To make it easier, consider installing automatic doors throughout the building. This ensures doors remain closed at all times.
Consider a solar power installation
If you’re interested in solar power, the first step is to raise the matter at a General Meeting. Typically, major works such as installing solar power for the building require Owners Corporation approval. Of course, you’ll also need money available in your capital works fund. The alternative is to vote for a special levy, which is where all owners contribute towards an infrastructure upgrade.
For those interested, there are new laws in NSW that make it easier for Owners Corporations to implement sustainability upgrades. Most special resolutions require a 75% majority vote, however, sustainability upgrades now only require a 50% majority.
Looking for expert strata management?
There are numerous ways to make your strata building more sustainable in winter. However, many of these measures require your scheme to be financially stable and well-managed. If your Owners Corporation needs assistance managing the day-to-day running of your strata building, More Than Strata is here to help. Contact us to find out how we can help you achieve greater sustainability in your building.