It doesn’t matter if you’ve been in your home or place of work for 10 years or if you’re just starting out, it is never a bad time to prioritize the environment. In fact, your eco-friendly lifestyle can have a positive impact on generations to come. Not sure how to get started? Check out these tips below.
Prioritize Environmentally Friendly Features
If you’re in the market for a new home, great. You have an opportunity to be highly selective. There are many environmentally friendly and energy-efficient features you can look for. Be sure to let your real estate agent know that you are looking for eco-friendly options. Great agents will do their best to find you a home that fits your green desires, or one that has the potential for environmentally-friendly upgrades.
Green Building specifically calls out solar panel location, insulation, water usage, and location relative to your office. Another great idea is to look for a property with lots of natural light. This will reduce the number of hours that you have to keep the lights on throughout the day. Further, allowing the sun to shine in will keep your home warmer so you rely less on the heat in winter.
Consider an Upgrade or Two
Certain environmentally-sound features don’t necessarily have to come on your house. Things like dual-pane windows and thicker insulation can be added post-purchase. Keep in mind here that some updates may positively affect the value of your home. Consider taking before-and-after photos as well as keeping receipts if you plan to sell (for a higher price than the neighbors) within the next couple of years. Smart home updates, such as a smart thermostat, are also a great selling point and a minimal investment.
We often buy used houses and cars, but many of us tend to turn away at other commonly used items, such as furniture, clothing, and electronics. But, there are many benefits of buying used. Specifically, you can typically spend anywhere from 50 to 90% less than buying new. Most importantly, used products don’t deplete currently available resources, such as energy or wood. Further, used means less pollution. Specific to home decorating, you can also find unique pieces through your local antique store.
Clean With a Purpose
The cleaning products you use in your home every day contribute to both landfill excess and pollution. Rather than sticking to mainstream cleaning products, look instead for sustainably-made products with reusable bottles, minimally packaged refills and even dissolvable tablets. The latest plant-based products are just as effective as other cleaning products, but are more affordable and biodegradable.
You can go even greener by making your own green cleaning products at home. In addition to DIY alternatives to things like glass cleaner, there are also recipes for alternatives to disinfecting cleaners like Lysol. Making you own can keep harsher chemicals out of the environment.
Digitize Documents into PDFs
Digitizing your documents into PDFs helps the environment by reducing paper usage and lowering carbon emissions and waste, while improving efficiency. If you need to quickly convert Word documents into PDFs while preserving the format, this tool can help.
Walk, Cycle, or Carpool
Walking not only serves as an excellent form of cardiovascular exercise, but it’s also one of the best ways to get from Point A to Point B. Both walking and cycling release no emissions, and every vehicle left in the garage reduces clutter on the roadways. If you live too far away to walk or bike, consider starting a carpool.
Invest in Bamboo Products
Bamboo products help the environment by providing a sustainable resource that absorbs carbon dioxide, cuts down on plastic waste and requires fewer pesticides and less water to grow. Shop at Bamboodu for the latest in high-quality kitchen and bathroom bamboo products!
Change Your Habits at Home
Lifestyle changes both big and small will help the environment. A few things you should do each day that will have an impact on energy use include setting lights on a timer, unplugging chargers and appliances when not in use, turning on your overhead fan, and doing your chores at night outside of peak energy use hours. The tried-and-true advice of turning lights off when you leave a room and turning the water off while you brush your teeth continues to apply today.
Change Your Habits at Work
You don’t have to stop your eco-friendliness at home — you can also make your office greener to reduce your carbon footprint and save money on utilities. There are a number of easy changes you can make, such as switching to LED light bulbs, using reusable pens and notebooks, and setting up recycling bins. You can also encourage employees to take part in eco-friendly practices, such as biking to work.
Going green means doing things that matter for the environment. And, since your home is your biggest investment, using it as a way to be environmentally friendly is a responsible decision. Never lose sight of the fact that everything you do today, from cleaning with environmentally responsible products to digitizing your documents, will contribute to the global effort to ensure a healthy and sustainable world for our children and grandchildren.