People are becoming more and more aware of their impact on the environment. Sometimes it seems like taking more eco-friendly steps might be hard on your budget if you don’t have the extra money to spend, but doing your part doesn’t have to be expensive – or difficult. Small changes add up to big differences, you just have to know what the steps you need to take to create a more eco friendly home.
Creating a More Eco Friendly Home
I think that sometimes when we are thinking about how we can leave a greener footprint, we tend to get overwhelmed with all the information and possibilities out there. There are tons of things we “could” and “should” be doing, but I want to focus on small, simple things we can easily integrate into our everyday lives. Creating a more eco friendly home should not be super stressful.
Tips for Using Less Water.
Saving water is all about taking small steps. An eco friendly home is a home where less water is wasted. Here are a few tips that will help you save big:
- Turn off the tap while brushing your teeth.
- Take shorter showers – even by a minute or two – it all adds up.
- Turn the heat down in the shower, even just by a pinch. You don’t have to take cold showers, but turning the heat down by a little bit can help you save electricity, and save water by getting out of the shower sooner. Plus, cooler water is actually better for you skin and hair!
- Flush the toilet only when needed. Do I need to explain this one? no? Okay… good. 😉
- Make sure you are always washing full loads of laundry. When you wash clothes, be sure you are filling it. This way you will need to do less loads.
- Buy produce from sustainable producers. There are farmers, ranchers, and other producers who use techniques that use less water and pollute less. You can research online or ask at your local farmers market to find a good vendor.
- If you are planning on planting a garden, use rain barrels to collect water for the garden. This will help you use less water from your tap!
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Tips for Using Less Energy
If buying a hybrid car or solar panels for your home is out of the question, you can still make a difference with some small changes. Making sure you are smart about the energy you use, and preventing wasting electricity, is a great way to promote an eco friendly home.
- Buy energy efficient appliances. The added cost of an energy efficient appliance will end up lowering your energy bills. Help your wallet and the environment buying buying energy efficient appliances.
- Charging devices use up power even when nothing is plugged into them. Make sure you unplug chargers when they are not in use.
- Use a power strip and turn it off when you aren’t using your devices that use remotes (think TV, DVD players, game consoles, etc.) These devices burn a lot of energy because of the remote receivers.
- Instead of driving to the corner store walk or bike. If you are going a short distance try and avoid using your car. The same can be said for collecting your mail too! If you mailbox is just up the road, take a quick walk to get your mail.
- Buy more products locally. It’s something we don’t think about often, but transporting goods across the country uses a lot of energy. Not only does buying locally use less energy; but you are helping your local business and economy too!
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
We have all heard the three R’s: Reduce, reuse, and recycle. Sadly, reuse often gets left out of the equation. There are so many ways you can reuse everyday items – you just have to get creative. For example; egg cartons and toilet paper rolls can be used to sow seeds for your garden and old yogurt containers can be used to make plant labels.
Reducing the amount of waste we throw out is something I have been more conscious about. Before tossing something in the garbage, ask yourself first if you could recycle it or compost the item. Food items can be composted so those automatically go in the compost bin. Recyclables are a little trickier sometimes so it’s good to familiarize yourself with items that are recyclable.
If we can learn to use the three R’s more often, it’s a great step towards creating a more eco friendly home.
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Making Your Own Safe and Effective Cleansers
Make your own inexpensive, natural, and safe products. Vinegar is an excellent product to use for cleaning glass and other surfaces. You can also mix vinegar with baking soda to get out tough stains. This is a great way to promote a green and cleaner eco friendly home.
There are a bunch of household products that can be made into household cleansers that are safe and natural, not only for your family, but for the environment too. A quick google search will help you find hundreds of natural and safe cleaning products you can make at home!
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Do What You Can and Don’t Stress About What You Can’t
When you are trying to save energy and water it’s a great idea to get your kids involved too. Try and make a game out of it! Have your family track water and electricity use and compete to see who can use the least. Your kids will often help keep you in check if you give them the chance!
Going green is better for the environment but it’s better for you and your family too. Conserving water and energy saves you money – which is something we can all be happy about! This should really be at the front of our minds when we are thinking about an eco friendly home.
At the end of the day, remember to take it slow and go easy on yourself. You can’t make all these changes overnight, no matter how simple and easy they are. It will take time to break old habits and create new ones. So don’t be too hard on yourself and remember to take your time!
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