Tips for Rental Property Managers on Picking Out Blinds
Furnishing your units with the proper window treatments can help create a beautiful, affordable space that will attract trustworthy tenants.
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As a rental property manager, you are responsible for a number of aspects of preparing and maintaining each property. As part of that responsibility, you need to make sure that each unit is orderly and inviting. You will need to walk prospective tenants through space prior to them making a decision. An attractive living area will more likely encourage people to apply than a space that is messy, unkept, or plain.
One way to encourage prospective tenants to sign a lease in your complex is to create a beautiful, affordable, and energy-efficient space. Denver commercial window treatment company will help you choose the right window treatments.
Whether the energy bill is the tenant’s or the owner’s responsibility, it is wise to consider energy efficient window treatments. Prospective tenants will be attracted to an apartment that offers lower bills.
Relying on cheap blinds may result in a negative impact on the longevity of the landlord’s appliances. In the summer, the tenant my run the air conditioner constantly, turning it up full blast. In the winter, he may run the heater on full power just to keep out the cold. Over time, this will affect the lifespan of these units and may require multiple service visits or replacement of damaged appliances by the landlord.
The proper use of any window treatment can help even a little with energy costs. In the summer months, the blinds should be closed when the sun hits the window to prevent an increase in interior temperatures. During the winter months, just the opposite is true. Open the blinds to allow the sun to warm the room. However, there are other options for window treatments that can bring even greater savings when the energy bill arrives.
Insulated Cellular Shades:
These shades are made of pleated materials with air layers in a honeycomb cross-section that fold up (or down) in an accordion style. The air pockets create an insulated layer that reduces the ability for heat to enter through the window. Professionally installed insulated cellular shades can reduce heat loss through the window by over 40 percent, resulting in a 20 percent energy savings in the winter months. In the summer, tightly installed shades reduce incoming heat from the sun by as much as 80 percent.
The best option for insulated cellular shades are those that operate on side tracks, as they keep a tighter fit while allowing users to control privacy and the amount of light in a room. Even better are automated cellular shades, which work on a schedule to open and close at specific times during the day. These can be adjusted to account for changes in daylight during different seasons to optimize energy savings and comfort within the apartment.
Roller or Roman Shades:
This energy-efficient option is more budget-friendly. Roller shades are raised or lowered from a roller bar attached to the top of the window. Roman shades consist of fabric that is evenly folded when opened or closed. Professionally installed roller or Roman shades can often be fitted inside the window casing or closely against the outside of it for the best energy savings.
This window treatment option comes in a variety of fabrics and designs. Choosing thicker fabrics will ensure a better thermal performance; however, they do not insulate in the same way that insulated cellular shades do. They work well for privacy and blocking sunlight and also come in room darkening options.
Vertical or horizontal blinds with slats that overlap when closed are effective for reducing interior heat gain during summer months. They are less effective at maintaining the home’s heat level during winter months due to the openings between the slats. The fit is not as tight as in the other options, allowing for heat to escape. In the summer, the slats can be controlled in various ways, allowing tenants to control glare, light, and solar heat gain while adjusting the blinds for optimal privacy.
Highly reflective blinds can be lowered when the sun is directed into the window, reducing heat gain. Blinds with horizontal slats can be adjusted to reflect sunlight onto a light-colored ceiling to keep it cooler in the room without making it darker, or the slats can be completely closed to block light out altogether.
Curtains or drapes can reduce heat loss or gain in varying levels, depending on the type of fabric and its color. Because of the wide selection of draperies available on the market today, it is difficult to specify exactly how they will perform in regards to energy savings.
In the summer months, the draperies should be closed on windows receiving direct sunlight to block out solar heat. In the winter, closing the drapes can prevent some heat loss from the room. Pull the all the drapes shut at night, and during the day, shut the ones that don’t receive direct sunlight.
When hanging curtains or drapes, install them as close to the window panes as possible. The bottom hem should push against the window sill or the floor to prevent air flow under the fabric. The top should be pressed against the ceiling or a cornice should be installed along the top of the window frame. The panels should overlap in the center and the sides can be sealed to the wall with Velcro strips or magnetic tape. These extra steps can reduce heat loss up to 25%, thereby decreasing energy costs.
Some rental property managers install window films on their units as a method of saving energy. These films can block against solar heat gain, reduce glare, and lower ultraviolet exposure. The disadvantages include the fact that they can’t be adjusted or removed, which means that the sun’s heat cannot warm the room in winter months.
Window films are often used with other window treatments to maintain the outside view while reducing glare and heat gain. Many property managers utilize films for odd-shaped windows or those that are difficult to fit with other window treatments. Due to the fact that they block ultraviolet sun rays, some landlords install them to prevent fading in carpeting and fabric.
A window film consists of an adhesive layer that holds it to the glass, a polyester film, and a scratch-resistant coating. They come in a variety of styles which can include tints, UV blockers, security features, or even low-e films that offer energy savings.
Regardless of which option or options you select, you can see how window treatments can help control the interior temperatures, which can prevent the overuse of HVAC units within the apartment.
The property manager should take into consideration the future maintenance requirements of the window treatments. The blinds should be easy for the tenants to maintain. Cheaper selections may easily break, particularly slatted blinds which can tear, break, or lose slats with constant use. Higher quality treatments will not require much maintenance, can be used regularly without damage, and should last through multiple sets of tenants.
The color you choose for the window treatments is important. Lighter hues not only help with energy costs but also make a room appear more open. However, lighter colors are more likely to show dirt and stains. Choosing a neutral color, like beige or gray, is wise, because it will not only hide wear from daily use, but it will also be more likely to match your tenants’ furniture and their decorating style.
Rental property managers must take into account their tenants’ preferences when picking out blinds for the apartment units. They need to make the rooms appealing and cozy so that potential renters will want to move in. However, they also must consider other factors when installing window treatments, such as future maintenance and energy savings. Furnishing your units with the proper window treatments can help create a beautiful, affordable space that will attract trustworthy tenants.