Everyone should aspire to becoming better at living a greener and more sustainable life and your home is great place to start. Simply making a few changes in and around your home can go a long way towards reducing your carbon footprint, reducing your household waste and using energy and water more sparingly. It’s easier than you think, and usually starts with just becoming more mindful of your activities around your home. So we’ve put together a list of 20 ways in which you can make your home a bit more eco-friendly. We hope you try a few of them out!
- Get a reusable coffee mug. If you’re somebody who enjoys a takeaway coffee on your way to work in the mornings, consider buying a reusable takeaway coffee cup instead of throwing a paper or plastic one away every day.
- Get a re-usable water filter system rather than buying bottled water.
- Go paperless by starting to read electronic versions of books, newspapers and magazines. Ask for electronic receipts and bills and stop unnecessary printing.
- Start buying more sustainable products. This is a really easy one to implement and it just revolves around making better decisions when you’re out shopping. Next time you need a new cooking spoon, buy a bamboo one. Look for food products packaged in paper, cardboard or glass rather than plastic etc.
- Take your own grocery bags with you. Instead of using single use bags every time you go shopping, buy a few re-usable ones and remember to take them with you on your next trip.
- Buy longer lasting groceries and consumables in bulk to reduce packaging wastage.
- There are a number of homemade cleaning products which you can make yourself which don’t contain harsh chemicals.
- Buy a couple of recycling bins to keep in your laundry or garage to encourage you to start recycling your used glass, paper and tins/cans.
- Start using biodegradable beeswax food wrap instead of plastic wrap.
- Try growing your own veggies. This doesn’t have to be a full on greenhouse or farm in your garden, simply dedicate a small patch of soil in your back garden to be used for planting some easy to grow herbs and veggies. You can even buy small seedlings and start by growing them into full size plants using a DIY windowsill greenhouse.
- Start composting your old veggie peels, scraps and garden trimmings to use around your garden. Your plants, and especially your veggie patch, will love the nutrients. Coffee grounds also make a great fertilizer for your plants.
- Get into a habit of switching off your appliances and lights when you’re not using them, here are some ways to save on your electricity bill around your home and make your home more eco-friendly in the process.
- Buy better quality shoes and clothing so that you don’t need to replace them that often.
- Check that your home is adequately insulated and that your doors and windows are sealed properly so that you’re not wasting energy used in heating or cooling your home.
- Consider installing a small array of solar panels to supplement your home’s energy usage.
- Replace your traditional water heater with a heat pump or gas heater. They only heat up the water which you’re actually going to use, saving energy and saving you loads of money in the long run.
- Conserve water in and around your home by installing water saving shower heads and toilets, these are usually the biggest users of household water.
- Repair and upscale old or damaged furniture rather than throwing it out. You’ll be surprised at how well an old dresser or coffee table can turn out with just a fresh coat of paint.
- Donate your old items instead of throwing them out. Instead of dumping your old furniture, clothes and appliances, rather donate them to local charity shops for others to use, repair or restore.
- Start buying fewer things and live a more minimalist lifestyle, you’ll be surprised at how much happier and less stressed you feel living in a home with less clutter.
Implementing some of these tips will not only make your home more eco-friendly, but many of them will actually save you money as well.
What are some of the ways in which you’ve become more eco-friendly in and around your home? Let us know your tips and tricks in the comments section below. We’d love to hear from you.