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Empowering Small Business


Multifamily housing units often generate excessive energy waste. Cut energy costs, improve your operational performance and enhance tenant comfort with these tips.

Savings Opportunities: Improved Business Metrics

Efficiency upgrades offer lower energy costs for you and your tenants. Energy-efficient buildings also have higher occupancy rates, command higher rents, and give the property a green image. This increases your net operating income and the value of your properties.

What is Green Leasing?

Under most gross leases, energy costs are based on tenant square footage, providing no incentive for energy savings. Under most net leases, building owners have no incentive to invest in energy efficiency because operating expenses are passed on to tenants who get the savings. When landlords and tenants agree to implement energy-efficiency improvements and allocate who pays for what, it's known as green leasing and both parties benefit.

Ready to lower energy costs and reduce your environmental impact? Check out these tips to improve efficiency in each area of your properties:

  • Seal cracks around windows, doors and packaged terminal air conditioner (PTAC) units.
  • Add weather-stripping to doors and operable windows.
  • Install apartment controls that adjust the temperature when vacant.
  • Install shade screens or window film to reduce solar heat gain.
  • Practice preventive maintenance to save energy and avoid frequent system breakdowns.
  • Replace older air conditioning units with energy-efficient models and save 30% or more.
  • Add extra attic insulation (to achieve R-30 minimum).

To see if your business qualifies for free AC maintenance services, please visit the LADWP AC Optimization Program website. If you have questions, please email acopt@ladwp.com or call 1-855-665-9469.

Plug Loads
  • Buy ENERGY STAR-certified TVs, refrigerators, ice machines and microwave ovens for apartments and common areas.
  • Turn off exercise equipment overnight.
  • Use timers on exterior signage and pool pumps.
  • Use vending machine controls to reduce lighting and refrigeration loads during slow times.

The LADWP offers incentives for energy efficiency upgrades. For more information visit the LADWP Custom Performance Program website. If you have any questions, please email custom@ladwp.com or call 1-213-367-3436.

Water Conservation
  • Install low-flow showerheads and faucet aerators to conserve water and reduce the energy needed for water heating.
  • Install smart irrigation systems for ground cover (trees, bushes, grass).
  • Buy Energy Star-certified clothes washers for apartments or common areas, which use about 45% less water than standard models.
  • Periodically inspect plumbing for leaks. A single leaky faucet dripping at the rate of one drip per second can waste more than 40 gallons a week.

The LADWP offers rebates for water conservation equipment. For more information please visit the Water Conservation Rebate Program website.

To learn how your business can obtain free water conservation items, send an email to waterconservation@ladwp.com or call 1-800-544-4498 and press "5."

  • Purchase indoor lighting with an 80+ CRI color quality rating.
  • Replace fluorescent lamps with LEDs and save 30% or more.
  • Use high illumination levels and high color temperature (4000K or more) for common areas and outdoor lighting.
  • Use lower illumination levels and lower color temperature (less than 3000K) for apartments.
  • Install occupancy sensors in common area bathrooms, exercise rooms, storage areas and meeting rooms.

To see if your business qualifies for free energy efficiency upgrades visit the Commercial Direct Install Program (CDI) website or call 1-877-714-1254.

Comprehensive Affordable Multifamily Retrofits

Comprehensive Affordable Multifamily Retrofits (CAMR) offers low-income, multifamily property owners free property assessments to identify efficiency opportunities to help owners and their residents save energy and reduce costs. Property owners also can receive financial incentives for reducing greenhouse gas emissions in both common areas and inside tenants' units. For questions about this program or to be placed on the waiting list, please email CAMR@ladwp.com or call 1-213-367-CAMR (2267).

A Case Study in Multifamily Efficiency

A property owner dedicated to providing high-quality affordable housing retrofitted a 31-unit multifamily building originally built in 1928. A variety of energy efficiency measures, including air sealing and insulation, reduced weather-normalized source energy use intensity by 36 percent. The project, completed for $30,200 with a $12,000 low-interest loan, increased the property value and is expected to reduce the vacancy rate and allow for higher rents.

Source: Institute for Market Transformation

LADWP offers many savings opportunities for businesses. For more information please visit LADWP.com or email SBS@ladwp.com.