Landlords and Tenants: Top Air Conditioning Tips for Apartments

Posted on 16 August, 2017 in Landlords and Tenants: Top Air Conditioning Tips for Apartments

Keeping cool is a basic human essential in a place like Darwin, particularly in stuffy apartments where there are few windows and limited air flow. In these situations, landlords have a responsibility to provide adequate cooling for their tenants, but there are some things tenants can do, too. Whether you are a landlord or tenant, here are some cool tips for you. 

Air Conditioning Options for Landlords

There are plenty of different options available for landlords to help keep their tenants cool, including affordable and reliable air conditioning. If you are a landlord, make sure you do the following:

  • Be aware that the cost to install multiple units in an apartment is generally higher than a house.
  • Consider the following air conditioning options: 
    • For a lot of apartments, a small split system air conditioner will be perfectly adequate.
    • For some, you might need to invest in multiple units.
    • Depending on the property, there could also be the option to install ducted air conditioning, although in most modern apartment buildings this isn’t possible.

Air Conditioning Options for Tenants

If your landlord refuses to provide you with an air conditioning system, you have the following options:

  • Get a small portable window unit. These are not particularly efficient and do mean a loss of light through the window, but they are portable so you can take them with you when you move.
  • Invest in an evaporative cooling system. These are not always a great option for a tropical climate, but they are affordable to run and you can generally get them on wheels, which makes them highly portable.

Other Ways to Keep Cool 

There are lots of things you can do to help keep your apartment cooler. This will mean your air conditioner doesn’t have to work as hard. Here are just a few suggestions:

  • Curtains and Blinds: Invest in some good quality block out curtains or blinds. Keeping the sun out during the day will help keep the place cooler.
  • Portable Fans: Install fans in the rooms. Most tenants would rather not spend the money on running an air conditioner if they don’t have to. 
  • Ceiling Fans: They can be a simple and cost-effective alternative and will also rarely require repairs or replacement. 

Landlord Responsibilities: Installation, Repairs and Replacement

Generally speaking, any repairs or replacement of fixed appliances in an apartment are the responsibility of the landlord. The initial installation cost of an air conditioning system will almost certainly fall to the landlord, unless the tenant wishes to purchase a small portable system for themselves. When installing new units, keep the following in mind:

  • Often installing air conditioners in apartments is more difficult, more expensive and requires good planning.
  • It’s likely that you will not be able to install the unit on an exterior wall, so you’ll need to think carefully and enlist the help of a qualified professional in order to determine where the unit can go.

Tenant Responsibilities: Some Repairs and Maintenance

It is not unreasonable to expect tenants to perform basic regular maintenance on the air conditioning unit inside their apartment. This usually involves ensuring the vents are clean and free of dust build up. Generally, tenants will not be responsible for repairs or replacement of the unit, unless the damage has been caused by the following:

  • Lack of basic maintenance and care, which would not otherwise have been caused by expected wear and tear.
  • Misconduct or carelessness on the part of the tenant.

 Avoiding Repairs and Replacement

Beyond the maintenance performed by tenants, it’s worth having a professional technician service the unit every one to two years. This keeps the system running efficiently and effectively, saving both you and the tenant money in the long run. This also means you’ll be aware and prepared for when the system might need replacing, as the technician will keep you informed of this.

Every landlord wants happy tenants, and keeping them cool and comfortable is one way to achieve this. If you do your research and plan carefully, installing air conditioning in an apartment doesn’t have to be expensive or complicated. Make sure you find a quality air conditioning company that can give the right advice and install the unit properly.

References: Image 1