A quick guide to low energy lighting (for your buy-to-let)
In any discussion about lighting or lightbulbs, the words ‘energy efficiency’ and ‘low energy’ will inevitably arise.
The old incandescent lightbulbs used a lot more energy in the production of light and are no longer manufactured in the EU. Now, low energy lightbulbs are what you should be investing in. Though the initial outlay may be more, they will save you money on your energy bills in the long-term.
Not only that, but as of April 2018, new standards are being introduced which will require private landlords who are renting out a property to make sure the Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) has an energy efficiency rating of no less than ‘E’ (the rating bands are A to G). So, we thought it timely to remind landlords about the benefits of low energy lighting and what the options are.
What types of low energy lightbulbs are available?
Just to confuse matters, there are three different types of low energy lightbulbs you could be buying. These are:
LEDs (Light-Emitting Diodes) are known for their long lifespan (approximately 40,000 hours) and energy efficiency. LED technology has evolved quickly in recent years, and when it comes to general household lighting, there are many options for consumers. LEDs are ideal where a high level of energy efficiency is required at low power levels. Though they cost more to buy, they will allow for savings on energy bills.
CFLs (Compact Fluorescent Lamps) are also ideal for general household lighting as they produce a good level of light, do not get too hot, and use significantly less power than incandescent lightbulbs. CFLs are more cost-effective when compared with traditional lightbulbs, but LEDs are even more efficient in terms of saving energy and cutting bills. CFLs can take a minute or two to reach full brightness.
Halogen bulbs are less efficient than LEDs and CFLs, so any reduction in your energy bills will be minimal, but they last longer than incandescent bulbs. Halogen bulbs work well with dimmers and give off a softer light that’s reminiscent of traditional lightbulbs.
Why should landlords install energy saving bulbs?
The use of lower energy lighting will reduce the amount you have to spend on energy – or reduce the amount your tenants have to spend on their energy bills. The less your tenants have to pay on their energy bills, the more likely they are to be satisfied with what they are having to pay, helping to ensure your tenants are happy. Landlords who install low energy solutions are also likely to boost the value of their properties.
Current building regulations
Building regulations offer guidelines where the use of low energy lighting is concerned. Current regulations state that 75% of lights in a home must be low energy.
As a landlord, it is in your best interests to make sure any properties you rent out are as energy efficient as possible, while the installation of low energy lighting should help to boost the value of your property and make it more appealing to tenants as a place to rent.