Rental homes and apartments can make the switch too!

Tenants and landlords can all benefit from electrifying rental homes!

The pathway to electrification is an opportunity for property owners and residents to work together to remove fossil gas from our homes and make best use of efficient electric technologies and clean renewable energy for the future of our city.

Gas is a fossil fuel that contributes to climate change. Burning gas in homes releases fumes that contribute to respiratory illnesses, especially in children and the elderly. Open flames in gas cooktops and heaters create the risk of fires and burns. Gas is inefficient for cooking and heating, and increasingly expensive for households on tight budgets.

Electric appliances can do everything that gas does, faster, safer, cleaner and more efficiently. Removing all gas appliances means you can eliminate the entire gas bill, saving the household thousands of dollars in energy costs.

Apartments are a bit trickier to retrofit than free-standing homes, but solutions can be found.

A man and a woman are playing with their young children

An energy-efficient all-electric home benefits landlords AND tenants.

Given that around a third of Canberra’s housing is rental properties, the participation of landlords is essential to achieving the goal of zero emissions from buildings. The ACT Government is committed to phasing out gas by 2045, so all homes will need to electrify eventually. The sooner your property goes all-electric, the greater the benefits that can accrue to both landlords and tenants.

Advice for property owners

As a landlord, any improvement you can make to the energy efficiency of your rental property will improve its appeal to prospective tenants. Improving the home’s health, safety and comfort for your tenants will make them more content and stable. Switching out gas appliances for efficient reverse-cycle air-conditioners, hot water heat pumps and induction cooktops will future-proof your property as gas is phased out across the city and the country.

Many tenants are keen to electrify for their own cost-savings and comfort and also to do their bit to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, but they need your help.

Landlords are eligible for the ACT Government’s Sustainable Household Scheme, a zero-interest loan of up to $15,000 to help with the purchase and installation costs for electrification.

Collaborate with your tenants and property manager (if applicable) to plan the upgrades over a timeline that works for all of you. Use the calculator and other resources in this website to explore your options.

Top tips for landlords

  1. Replace gas hot water with a hot-water heat-pump.
  2. Replace gas heating with reverse-cycle air-conditioning.
  3. Replace gas cooktop and oven with an induction cooktop and electric oven.
  4. Abolish the gas meter and pipes to prevent gas leaks.
  5. Upgrade ceiling insulation: as a minimum, comply with the ACT’s new energy efficiency standard for rental properties, or preferably upgrade to R5 to match the standard for new homes.
  6. Install good quality blockout blinds or curtains on all windows.
  7. Fix draughts around windows, doors and wall vents.
  8. Install rooftop solar panels and battery.
  9. Install a fast-charger for an electric vehicle.
  10. Consider other upgrades such as replacing 3mm windows with double-glazing, adding insulation in walls and under floors, planting shade trees, installing windows in north-facing walls, adding awnings over west-facing windows.

Advice for rental tenants

Top tips for renters

Get in touch with your property manager or landlord.

As a minimum, ask them to:

  1. Replace gas hot water with a hot-water heat-pump, and
  2. Upgrade ceiling insulation to comply with the ACT’s new energy efficiency standard for rental properties.

If the landlord is amenable, ask them to also do some or all of the other actions in the ‘Top tips for landlords’ list above, prioritising the gas actions.

If the landlord can’t make upgrades right now, try these temporary actions:

  1. Use portable electric heating appliances instead of gas
  2. Use portable electric cooking appliances instead of gas
  3. Insulate windows with temporary curtains
  4. Block draughts around windows, doors and wall vents.
  5. Keep yourself warmer with woollen clothing layers and blankets.

As a rental tenant, making changes to your home can be challenging because you do not have control over the decisions. And for a variety of reasons in a competitive rental market, you may be hesitant about asking your landlord for upgrades.
However, you do have rights as a tenant.
At some point before 2045, all rental properties will have to replace all gas appliances with electric. And there are real benefits from electrification for both you and your landlord, the sooner the better.
Download the resources on this page and tailor them for your own use. Get in touch with your property manager or landlord and provide them with the information about making the switch.
Ask them to prioritise replacing gas hot water with electric (preferably a heat pump).
Point out that landlords are eligible for the ACT Government’s Sustainable Household Scheme, a zero-interest loan of up to $15,000 to help with the purchase and installation costs for electrification.
Ideally, the landlord will at least replace all of the gas appliances and upgrade the ceiling insulation to meet the new standard. But even if hot water is all they are willing or able to do in the short-term, you can take non-permanent steps to stop using gas, then close your gas account and eliminate your gas bill. You can use portable electric appliances and temporary curtains and blankets and then take them with you to your next home.
You may also be eligible for financial assistance and energy advice schemes.


Resources for renters

Renters’ Home Energy Program visit
Do your own self-assessment using the Renters’ Home Energy Webtool, which is a series of online questions. It takes about 30-60 minutes to complete.
If you’re a pensioner or concession card holder, visit the Home Energy Efficiency Program.

Resources for property owners

If you own a property in Canberra, visit the Sustainable Home Advice Program.
New ceiling insulation energy efficiency standards for rental properties: what you need to know

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