Tag Archives: rental properties

Toilet Options for Commercial Buildings

When you have a multi-family dwelling or rental properties, keeping the cost of utilities down is important. Installing high-efficiency toilets can help with this. If the tenant pays the water bill, it’s a good selling point too, or if you pay for the water, it helps you save money. If you have the water-intensive toilets in your building, they can use up to 7 gallons of water each time they’re flushed. A high-efficiency toilet uses about 55 percent less. So, what are your water efficient toilet options?

Water efficient toilet options
There are three different types of water efficient toilets. The single-flush will flush at 1.6 gallons each time, the dual-flush with 1.6 gallons for solids and 0.8 gallons for liquids. The third option is the pressure assist flush which is one gallon per flush.

The pressure assist toilets are used most often in commercial buildings, restrooms, and hotels. They can also be installed in private homes too. There’s a plastic pressure tank which is inside the reservoir of this commode. It compresses air inside the pressure tank from the pressure of the water line. It traps the air and compresses it as the main tank fills with water. The water is forced into the bowl by the compressed air when the commode is flushed. This action will push everything out with the flush with less water than other tanks use.

Another way to save on the water bill is to install low flow urinals in a men’s room. If you have a high traffic volume in the men’s room, a low flow urinal can save your money.

Figure it this way, you own a commercial building, and each employee uses the bathroom four times a day. So, you take the number of employees multiplied the number of flushes, and you’ll see that this is a lot of water. If you have toilets and urinals which conserve water though, you’ll find that the toilets are cost effective.

If you have a commercial property with older commodes, then you may want to consider updating your bathrooms with efficient ones.

Should You Convert Your Wood Burning Fireplace into Gas?

You have several rental properties with wood burning fireplaces. You have some concerns though because of tenants having a live wood fire. The thought of an unattended fireplace and your apartment building going up in smoke worries you. Is there a better way?

Another option
You do always have the choice of just covering the fireplace over or blocking it. But it is a useful renting point when looking for new tenants. So, another option would be to have installed a gas fireplace insert. You would still have the appearance without the danger of someone accidentally burning down your building.

Also, there are other advantages to gas fireplaces. A fireplace which takes wood can take some work to get the fire going correctly which can be a danger with an unskilled tenant doing this. With a gas fireplace insert though, a flick of the switch and the fire is lit.

Also, with a wood burning fireplace, you have burned-out logs and ashes which need to be cleaned out; and if thrown away without being cooling, this is a fire danger. This wood burning creates soot which leaves creosote in the chimney too which needs to be removed by a chimney cleaner. If you don’t have it removed, it can cause a chimney fire. With a gas insert, there aren’t all of these problems. But it wouldn’t hurt to have a professional check it out once a year or so.

Cost of an insert
The cost of an insert cost about $3000 to $4000, depending on the size, which includes the installation of the insert and the liner for the chimney. It will heat an area of between 1,000 to 3,000 square feet which depends on the size of the insert. You will need to talk to a gas fireplace insert dealer to decide what size you need and the heating capacity of the insert you want for the apartment.

Wood burning fireplaces have the snap, crackle and pop of a fire. However, gas fireplace inserts are more convenient and safer.