What are the benefits of submetering?
A number of studies and demonstration projects confirm both the short-term and long-term benefits of submetering, including:
Submetering saves energy. An analysis of submetered buildings (where data have been made available) conclusively illustrates that annual savings of 18-30% of total tenant electricity consumption was achieved in the first year.
Submetering energy savings persist over time. Submetering savings have proven to be maintainable over long periods of time as demonstrated in a number of studies. Some likely reasons are:
(a) that conservation is reinforced by the resident’s receipt of an electric bill;
(b) residents will invest in efficiency (e.g., more efficient refrigerators and lighting) because they will reap the benefits directly.
Approximately 60-70% of tenants benefit from submetering. The only tenants who fare worse under submetering than under other means of allocation electric cost are those who use excessive amounts of electricity. Those residents who find that their electric bills are excessive have the ability to reduce cost by reducing consumption.
Submetering is eminently fair. Submetering simply restores the “user pay”” concept. Tenants who leave windows open and leave on lights will pay for their actions or change their habits.