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  1. Apartment living can give you a unique and convenient way of life. Rather than commuting miles out to the suburbs just to get some extra space, living in an urban apartment can keep you close to work, shopping, and recreation. Of course, downtown living carries a lot of the same overhead as its more distant counterpart, with energy costs at the top of the list. Here are some simple ways to reduce your energy expense in an apartment. Draw the Blinds In larger apartment buildings, individual units may only have one wall to provide a view of the neighborhood. If it happens to be the same wall that catches late-day sun, the apartment can quickly heat up. That’s good in the winter and bad in the summer. Managing your window blinds will help you get the maximum benefit of winter sun and the minimum impact of summer sun. Have HVAC Serviced As a renter, you are probably not in charge of heavier maintenance tasks like changing furnace filters. However, it is in your best interest to make sure it’s being done because you’re the one paying the energy bill. Clean filters use less energy, saving you on energy costs, so make sure the maintenance staff is keeping things current. Watch Water Waste Most people are in tune with the need to minimize wasted water just because of the importance of conserving. However, once we’re talking about hot water, there is also an energy cost. Any drippy or inefficient fixture that utilizes hot water is also wasting energy as it wastes water. Make sure every faucet and shower head has low water flow and doesn’t leak. If your unit ever needs a new water heater, encourage the management to look into tankless water heaters for building-wide savings. Be Balcony-Wise The need for fresh air is natural, and a great apartment will have some outdoor space for you to enjoy. It’s easy to lose track of the loss of warm and cool air that takes place around those doors. Make sure you are keeping your deck or balcony door closed. If there are gaps in the weatherstripping or other issues with keeping it tight, have the maintenance staff check it out. Choose Efficient Bulbs Saving energy is often a matter of investment. Spending a little more to buy efficient LED bulbs can add up to real savings over the long term. As you replace blown bulbs in your apartment, choose efficient models that will pay you back for your initial investment in them with reduced energy costs. Living close to work and recreation can be a real convenience. With a few simple strategies to save energy, an urban apartment can also be an affordable place to live too.