How To Save Money On Utilities Despite Inflation, Using Ratio Billing

Posted by Written with love by the Livable Content Team on Dec 2, 2021 9:15:00 AM


Livable often hits double-digit usage decreases for buildings that implement the RUBS program - Ratio Utility Billing System. For example, in a fully occupied four-unit building, water and electricity use went down 31 percent in the first year that Livable’s RUBS was implemented.

In another case, with a 300-unit (plus) building, there were 24-percent reductions in usage and an 89-percent recovery rate. The result was over $180,000 recovered in just one year of RUBS. 

“Energy costs are getting higher, and the cheapest energy is the energy you don’t use." ~ Paul Pettipas

RUBS helps get residents actively engaged with saving on utilities. Whether your property has multiple units varying in size, retail space, and/or common areas, Livable can customize allocation factors and billing frequency for your unique property and accurate billing to each Livable resident.  

Inflation and energy prices continue to climb.

“Crude oil has risen 66 percent this year, heating oil has risen 86 percent, natural gas prices have almost tripled, and gasoline is up a dollar per gallon nationwide. Finally, those that use propane can expect to pay 550 percent more than this time last year (source).”

Apartment owners are affected by these increases. It might be hard to hang on, and tempting to sell, as utilities continue to escalate. 

Mark Ventre of Steep Commercial notes that “One of the easiest ways to mitigate much of the utility burden and help residents be more mindful of their energy consumption is by implementing a Ratio Utility Billing System.”

At Livable we stand behind this claim. For property owners still responsible for paying for their residents’ utility bills the upward trends can be really overwhelming. 

Electricity rates have gone up six out of the last eight years according to a survey from the U.S. Energy Information Administration. 

Water and waste management rates are also up. Property owners in many cities contend with aging systems, fewer resources and extreme weather. 

Even building with individual meters for gas and electricity often have a master meter for water, which is often the costliest of all utilities and is paid by the owner (source). 

Livable’s Ratio Utility Billing System (RUBS) can track, analyze, and bill back for many services. Depending on the market that can include water, sewer, gas, internet, electricity, landscaping and MORE.

What happens when you enlist an experienced RUBS specialist to help you? 

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Property owners dramatically reduce consumption at their properties by making residents financially responsible for their usage. 

Housing providers end up with the ability to regain almost 90 percent of their water and energy costs through RUBS so they can even opt to carry a bit more of the utility bills when economic times are uncertain. This becomes a “goodwill deduction” that residents will appreciate. 

Key things to note about RUBS: 

  • It takes little time to implement - no submetering system to install. 
  • It is an eco-friendly way to hold residents accountable for their utility usages. 
  • Sometimes RUBS can only be instituted with a unit turnover, but there are minimal upfront costs and Livable provides owners with an addendum where jurisdiction allows. 
  • The system helps you shed much of the expense of ever-rising utility costs. 
  • Adding the language in the lease agreement is worthwhile even if owners are considering RUBS down the road. 

It’s easy to sign up and get started. 

Combat rising utility costs by being proactive and creative. RUBS is an easy way to make residents responsible. 

We all like to be incentivized. If you have done it yet, perhaps now is the time. 

For more details book a discovery call here.


how to save money on utilities