Budget-Friendly Hacks For a Green Home
One of the most common queries in the web today is how to go green.
Many people think it means homes powered by wind or solar panels, or doing an involved system for recycling. That’s not the case.
In fact, you can go green with simple things like shutting the lights off when you leave the room or shutting off the faucet while brushing your teeth!
Going green isn’t just a fad. It’s a must now for people everywhere!
And as for homeowners, what would it mean to go green at home? Do you need to purchase those fancy solar-powered generators? What happens if you don’t have the budget to replace all your furniture and appliances with eco-friendly models? What if you’re already settled in your home? Would you need to get a total renovation project done?
Short answer to that – no, you don’t have to do a whole makeover (right now, at least).
Even though you’ve been living in your home for the last couple of years, there are tons of ways that you can go green. That’s why, for this piece, we’ll show you some nifty techniques on how to have an eco-friendly home!
From the obvious ones like conserving water and electricity, to making your A/C work for you, we’ll give you some amazing, budget-friendly hacks for a green home.
Planning on taking a track in home management? Want to be accredited as a specialist on home improvement and DIY life hacks? Consider these schools below!
– Home Improvement Experts
– Penn Foster Career School
– Institute for Apprenticeships & Technical Education
– Best Improvement
Practical Tips to Make Your Home Eco-Friendly
Whether you stay in a flat, a studio, a bungalow, or a townhouse, there’s always something you could do to help the planet and go green. Here are a few practical tips to make your home eco-friendly!
Reduce Electricity Costs
This can be as easy as adjusting your habits in the home. What do we mean by that?
Well, everyone’s guilty of forgetting to shut off a light before getting out of a room, or unplugging a cord after use. And we get it. But simple things like that can make the difference.
This is especially crucial for kitchen appliances like rice cookers, induction stoves, microwaves and kettles.
Yes, they may not be switched on or in use, but merely being plugged into a socket uses up electricity. You’ll be amazed to see how much money you can spare on your next electricity charge.
Product-wise, if you’re in the market for upgrades, go green on everything.
The Energy Star symbol is a wonderful sign of an item’s eco-friendliness, but you should always do your research before going out to shop. Small things such as upgrading your garage door makes a big difference!
Appliances? Get endorsed eco-friendly models!
Gadgets? Ensure they’re energy-efficient units!
Fixtures? Swap your old ones out for some eco-friendly types. For starters, replace your bulbs with CFLs or LEDs. It’s a little pricey, but it will pay off within a few months.
So you’ve started on your green journey, and now you’ve been segregating your trash into biodegradable, non-biodegradable, and toxic waste (as you should). What’s next?
Take it up another level and do compost!
How? There are four different methods to do so. RENT Café has a fantastic step-by-step article for each compost method, listed below.
– Composting with Worms
– Electric Composter
– Bokashi, or “fermented organic matter”
– Collection Services
Conserve Your Water
It may seem like a tired reminder, but trust us, it works.
Things like flushing less, cutting showers short, and waiting until you’ve got a full load before using the washing machine and dishwasher are great ways to save water.
Closing your water gauge lever when you head out of your home can also spell the difference in your water bill.
You will also see that simply shutting down your faucet when you’re not using it works wonders for your water usage. It will take some getting used to, and it could even seem inconvenient when you’re cleaning dishes or brushing your teeth.
But remember, all of this effort will get you a greener home, and will save you a good amount of money on your utilities.
Make Your A/C Work For You
Complicated and even impossible as it might seem, but you can make your air conditioning unit work for you.
Be sure to wash your air filters regularly. Experts advise having it professionally cleaned at least every six months to ensure every last speck is wiped clean.
The regular cleaning will ensure your filter doesn’t put stress on your HVAC system and drive your bills through the roof.
As for heating, you could also get a programmable thermostat so that it will only be in use when it’s really needed.
And to add to that, you should make sure to bundle up as needed when we go into the colder parts of the year. This doesn’t mean you never turn on your heat, no. But if you’re dressed for the weather, it just means you wouldn’t have to turn the temperature all the way up.
Your bank account – and the environment – will thank you for it in the long run.
Shop for Organic and Recycled Products
If you’re about to relocate to a new home, or considering changing out some things in your place, this is a great way to practice being green.
You won’t only be able to reuse and recycle, you’ll give your house an unique, one of a kind aesthetic without spending an unreasonable amount of money.
Obviously, you’ll have to ensure you buy something of quality too so you don’t find yourself replacing it within a few months. We recommend visiting your local antique shops, flea markets, or browse Craigslist to canvas for possible furniture pieces.
If you can’t find anything decent (which we doubt), make sure you inspect the quality and durability of your items when you do shop for new furniture.
Here are some things you can keep in mind to check if you’re shopping for sustainable furniture:
– Made from materials coming from renewable sources (e.g. salvaged wood, recycled textiles, stone, porcelain, etc.).
– NOT made from exotic wood that could involve deforestation.
– clean chemicals and toxins that contaminate the environment.
– Made with local product, by local producers – will save you transportation and delivery costs.
– Made in a country that follows green building procedures.
– Finished with water-based paint, finish or stain.
– NOT sprayed with chemicals to resist stains.
The last point is especially critical, because many producers use chemicals that are dangerous to people and the environment alike.
And the thing is, people don’t know just how toxic these chemicals are. Anything from paints, fabrics, and building materials, if they’re made with chemicals, can produce VOCs, or volatile organic compounds.
VOCs, when released in the air, can bring on allergies, migraines, and even asthma attacks. And as we’re all spending much more time indoors in the modern age, the health hazards of VOCs are ever more present.
You’ll also want to ensure your linens and other textile items have premium quality fabric and will last at least a few years. Organic cotton is a fantastic fabric, so go for it if you have the money.
When doing your regular house cleaning and general maintenance, steer out of chemical solutions and products.
Make the effort to look up homemade recipes for cleaning products. You may be stunned to find that there’s a homemade solution to nearly any stain and stubborn spot in your home.
Whatever your first steps are to having an eco-friendly home, it counts.