Make your home environmentally friendly with these simple changes!
With the effects of climate change taking the front page of every newspaper, you’re probably wondering what changes you can make to live a more sustainable life. Remodelling your entire home can be extremely costly, making it impractical for many Americans, especially for those with student loan debt and higher living costs. Instead, we’re going to cover three affordable ways you can live a more eco-friendly lifestyle without breaking the bank. Keep reading to find out ways you can make an impact in this world.
1. Use Environmentally-friendly Cleaning Products
The cleaning products you use to scrub your floor, wipe down the counter, and remove stains are filled with chemicals that are harmful to Mother Nature. Think about it—where do all those cleaning liquids go when you’re tidying up your home? Right back into the earth! Many household cleaning products contain something called volatile organic compounds (VOCs). Ingredients such as ammonia, phosphorus, and nitrogen are all classified as VOCs and harm our planet. When these cleaning products are washed down the drain, the contaminants re-enter rivers, lakes, and streams and are consumed by plants and animals. Some of these chemicals can also accelerate the growth of plants and create algae blooms, which take oxygen out of the water and suffocate marine life. To prevent this from happening, switch to eco-friendly cleaning products, such as vinegar or store-bought items. These can include recycled paper towels, biodegradable laundry detergent, and eco-friendly multi-surface spray.
2. Invest in Eco-friendly Home Repairs
Tearing down your walls and updating everything in your home with eco-friendly replacements can be expensive. If you have the budget, that’s great. However, this isn’t always feasible, so you may need to look at alternative financing options. For example, if you’re in the sunshine state and need new storm windows to brace for hurricane season, look for Florida pace financing options. Applying can help you save money and energy in the long run by keeping the heat in and the elements out. If you’re trying to avoid financing eco-friendly home repairs, look for other sustainable options, such as alternative ways to heat your home. Make sure every wall is insulated to trap in heat and reduce noise. Install a wood-burning fireplace to limit the amount of gas you use to heat your home in the winter. Or, use electrical space heaters in common rooms you use the most.
Other common home repairs that can be made eco-friendly include new cabinets. Rather than buying new wood and materials, repurpose what you already have by repainting with environmentally friendly paints that don’t contain VOCs. Or, visit antique shops or salvage yards if you’re looking for new furniture or appliances. You never know what you’ll find!
3. Make Lifestyle Changes
It’s important to remember that green living is much more than energy efficiency. There are plenty of lifestyle changes you can make that can also save our planet. Take a look at a few ways you can change your daily habits that can lead to a greener future:
- Reduce food waste: All those scraps you threw in the garbage are pretty harmful to the planet. In fact, food waste is one of the largest contributors of methane gas emissions. Methane and other gasses emitted from food waste in landfills is 25 percent more harmful than carbon dioxide. It traps heat in the atmosphere, which leads to global warming, and forms holes in the ozone layer.
- Practice sustainable gardening: Rather than heading to the grocery store for produce, build your own sustainable garden. With a shovel, wood to create a garden box, and your favorite seeds, you’ll be on your way to growing your own food at home. Make sure you maintain your garden by watering daily and using eco-friendly weed killers. If you don’t have space for an outdoor garden, create or buy your own indoor garden.
- Reduce, reuse, recycle, repurpose: You’ve probably heard the old adage to reduce, reuse, and recycle. Today, another “R” joins the family—repurpose. This can be refurbishing furniture you already have, or going to your local thrift store and buying used garments and accessories. If you have the skills and a sewing kit, you can even repurpose the clothes you already have.
Living sustainably can lead to many great outcomes. Not only will it have positive effects on the environment, but you’ll also save money by reducing energy costs and money spent on various items. From finding new ways to repurpose what you already have to thinking consciously about the products you use on a daily basis, these tips will help you be more eco-friendly.