Energy - like any cost is going to be front and centre in the minds of property owners and tenants alike, especially when the high power prices Australians have paid in recent years look unlikely to let up anytime soon.

So as a commercial property owner, making your property more energy efficient is a no brainer - not only to keep electricity bills as low as possible, but as an attractive feature for businesses and tenants looking to minimise their own energy footprints.

That’s why we asked energy experts Mozo to share some savvy energy upgrades that any commercial property owner can implement.

Switch to solar 

Solar is booming in Australia, with recent figures from the Australian Clean Energy Regulator revealing that 3.5 million solar panels were installed on the rooftops of households and businesses in 2017.

And while it won’t be an option for every property, installing solar panels on your roof space could prove a savvy long term solution to offsetting electricity costs, especially if you can add a battery storage system into the mix. Not only is this a surefire way to please your tenants when it comes to their power bills, it could also be an attractive asset for prospective buyers if you ever decide to sell up.

Light the way with LEDs

It may come as a shock, but lights are often one of the biggest culprits for high power bills. Of course the amount of lighting needed will vary between different types of tenants, but according to the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage it can account for up to 50% of the energy use of some businesses.

Fortunately a simple solution to cut down lighting costs by as much as 80% is to make the switch from fluorescent and halogen lights to more energy efficient replacements, like LEDs. Not only will swapping out older lights with energy-friendly alternatives cut down your property’s energy bills, LEDs tend to last far longer as well. 

But what if you’ve already switched over to LEDs? It may be worth looking at upgrading or installing controls and timers in your property, as dimmers and sensors can have a dramatic impact on reducing energy usage.

Invest in new appliances

As an owner you may have installed any number of appliances as part of your original property fit out, but given how fast technology moves, there’s a good chance that they've lost their lustre when it comes to energy efficiency. And when appliances can account for around 30% of energy consumption, investing in energy-friendly upgrades could be another savvy way to trim electricity bills.

For example, according to the Department of the Environment and Energy, a typical single door fridge with a three star energy rating costs roughly $79 a year to run, while a five star model costs just $46.90. That works out at a $300 difference over 10 years, just for a small efficiency upgrade on a single appliance. 

If you do take any of these energy efficient measures on board make sure you advertise them, because your current or future tenants are likely to love the prospect of cheaper bills and a more sustainable workplace, so make sure they know about it!

Helping Australians find better value deals on everything from their home loans to energy plans, Mozo is one of Australia’s leading financial comparison websites.