Consumption and Conservation Behaviors Among Affordable Housing Residents in Southern California

Posted on by Stephen Gee

Affordable housing residents, who are most impacted by rising utility costs and often misunderstood in terms of their energy and water use practices, are usually overlooked in conservation efforts. This study aims to explore the consumption and conservation behaviors, satisfaction and experience with building services, energy burden, and conservation drivers among affordable housing residents and help identify ways to reduce their utility bills and improve their overall quality of life. The research builds on a questionnaire that facilitated the collection of data from residents of four affordable housing facilities in Southern California. Drawing from the findings, this study outlines key intervention strategies aimed at enhancing efficiency while also identifying potential implementation barriers. Educational programs and the installation of Photovoltaic (PV) solar panels emerge as potential pivotal interventions. The findings of this study could inform designers, engineers, developers, policymakers, and other stakeholders in the affordable housing sector about ways to educate residents for sustaining long-term behavior change, promoting residents’ participation in consumption reduction missions, and facilitating the success of demand response (DR) programs.

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