Going green has been a hot topic of debate for quite a while now, and many of us are wondering if going green means a total shift from the lives we’ve always known for ultra-green habits. The truth is that even a small change in your daily life can have a huge impact over a long time, so let’s dive into a few things you can do to start going green at home!

How do Beginners Go Green?

If you’re feeling a little behind on the “going green” movement, don’t worry. There’s a good chance that some of your every day habits can be shifted just slightly to fall into alignment with going green. The best practice is to start small and work your way up to changing more frequent habits.
The great thing about going green is that not only will you be helping our planet by using less energy and resources, but you’ll also be saving yourself money in the long run. That’s what we call going green!

Does Going Green Save Money?

Going green in your home, and outside of your home, can absolutely save money in the long run. Let’s start with small habits to help you go green and work our way up to the larger ones:

Easy Ways to Go Green at Home

-skipping single-use products like paper towels, water bottles, facial wipes, and coffee cups can save you some serious coin over time. Instead opt for sponges or washable “un-paper” towels, metal or glass water bottles, and a water filter, using washcloths or terry cloths, and using ceramic coffee cups. These products only need to be purchased once to replace hundreds, if not thousands of their single-use counterparts.
-Using less water by turning off the faucet while washing your face, and brushing your teeth can help lower your consumption AND your water bill.

Intermediate Ways to Go Green at Home

-Purchasing well-made clothing may be more expensive at the outset, but you’ll be more likely to keep these items for longer and get more wear out of them. Also, consider shopping for your favorite brands from second-hand outlets, thrifted clothing is almost always cheaper than brand-new.
-If you live in a walkable city or town, consider riding a bike or just walking to your favorite destinations. You’ll save money on gas and stop putting miles on your vehicle for small trips that could easily be made by walking.

Going Really Green:

-If you’re really willing to commit to going green, seriously consider installing solar panels. The price tag may be daunting at first, but remember that many folks with solar panels are eligible for federal tax credits, state rebates, and also increasing the value of their home, and of course you’ll save money on your electric bill!

15 Ways to Go Green at Home

  1. Unplug appliances you’re not using – this sounds small but the department of energy suggests that simply unplugging appliances when you aren’t using them can save you up to 10% of your average energy consumption and costs.
  2. Wash your clothes in cold water, and line dry clothes if possible – the bulk of energy used by your washing machine is heating the water. While not everyone has the luxury of drying their clothes on a clothesline, consider using a foldable drying rack.
  3. Choose local products – the produce at your local farmer’s market is likely to be organic and farmed within a close radius of your home, this cuts transportation costs and can help reduce carbon emissions, you’ll also want to try and only buy produce that is IN SEASON- again to reduce transportation costs.
  4. Get your appliances and tools repaired instead of throwing them out – the next time your toaster gives out or your washing machine starts making a noise, call a repair professional instead of throwing it into a landfill.
  5. Reuse anything and everything you can – Get reusable shopping bags. Or better yet, make them! This video will show you how to make reusable shopping bags from old T-shirts!
  6. Decrease your single-use plastic – no more plastic straws or cutlery, Styrofoam takeout containers, plastic shopping bags, razors with plastic handles, and thousands more. The next time you buy a product that is made with plastic, consider buying a plastic-free option.
  7. Switch your lightbulbs – LED or fluorescent light bulbs use far less energy and last much longer than standard incandescent bulbs. LED bulbs can also be purchased in a wide array of hues, so you’re not stuck with blinding white light.
  8. Use natural cleaning products – unnatural cleaning products are more likely to have been tested on animals or contain animal products, as well as having a harmful effect on the ecosystem.
  9. Go paperless – Handling all of your bills and correspondence on a computer rather than through the mail can save paper, plastic, and ink. and transportation costs
  10. Ditch takeout – it never fails that when you order takeout, you’re left with a big pile of wrappers and foam boxes.
  11. Turn off the lights – don’t leave the light on when you walk from the bathroom to the living room, turn it off! Instead of leaving the kitchen or hallway light on at night, consider using an LED nightlight instead!
  12. Recycle – it won’t solve everything, but it’s something.
  13. Reuse BEFORE you recycle – both are great on their own, but why not reuse a milk jug to water your plants, or use a printed-on sheet of paper to write your grocery lists on the back?
  14. Save water where you can – turn off the water while you’re brushing your teeth or lathering in the shower, avoid running lawn sprinklers or cutting down the time you use them, and cut your shower time by just a few minutes.
  15. Buy what you can secondhand – this goes for clothes, appliances, glass food containers, metal water bottles, accessories, home decor, and everything!

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