One of the best things about being or going eco-friendly is that often; there are a lot of savings to be made too. While there are a couple of things that you will need to make an investment in, ultimately, you will have a long-term solution.
You might not think that making such a small change will make a big difference, but reusables make a big impact on how sustainable and eco-friendly your house is.
Plastics can take up to 1000 years to break down if they do at all. And while there are some people who do need access to plastics, for many people, metal straws are an option (as are cardboard ones).
Most coffee shops will be happy to put your coffee into a reusable cup rather than give you a single-use. And instead of buying water bottles as you go about your day, find a reusable water bottle that fits your lifestyle.
Here are a couple of easy swaps:
- Use reusable shopping bags instead of using plastic ones from the grocery store
- Look into cleaning products that are homemade, natural, or where you just add water.
- Invest in metal straws, reusable drinks containers
- Switch cling wrap for wax wrap
The spotlight has been on fast-fashion and how bad it is for the planet and the people who make it. And if that sounds like something you want to do your bit to help, then start setting goals.
- Try no buy months where you don’t buy anything (apart from groceries and essentials)
- When you want a new outfit, opt for thrift stores or buy second-hand online
- For furniture items, not only can you donate your old items, but try to buy second-hand here too
If free energy sounds nice, then solar panels are for you. Switching to solar panels will help you see a reduction in your energy bills; for those who like places where it is often sunny, these are huge benefits. There are many options for cheap solar panels or those that are subsidized.
Initially, they will be an investment, but you will notice a difference in your bills almost immediately.
We don’t often think about how much water we use as a household until we see the water bill. But when it comes to saving water, you will see it reflected in that bill pretty quickly.
Water waste in the home comes from a lot of places. Leaky taps, more baths than showers, or running the washing machine or dishwasher with half loads a lot. There are a few things you can do to make a positive impact on how much water you are using.
- Look into blocks and bottles that you put in the toilet cistern to reduce how much you use when flushing.
- Hire a plumber to fix any leaks or tackle them yourself.
- Switch to showers, and use a shower timer (it can be tough to start with but becomes easier over time).
- Switch to low-low taps (and showerhead if you are dedicated).
- Only use the washing machine or dishwasher for full loads, and use the eco setting if you have one.
The more information you have about what you use, the easier the task becomes. For example, if you notice that on some days you are using a lot more energy, you can make a note of what happened during the day. Narrowing down what items use a lot of energy can help you decide if you need to upgrade to an eco-friendly one or not.
When you can see the behaviors in the house, you can plan accordingly. Often smart meters can help you, in combination with smart appliances, to manage the household better.
The number one way to reduce food waste is to start meal planning (and stick to it). When you meal plan, you will only buy exactly what you need in terms of fresh produce. If you have a rough idea of what you want to cook each day, you can plan for two or more weeks.
Here are some of the best meal-planning apps that can help you see a dramatic reduction in your grocery costs and a reduction in food waste.
- BigOven (great for leftovers)
- MealBoard (great for budgets)
You don’t need to make all of the changes at once; you can make the ones that will make the most difference to your household and then do the rest after. Here are some more ideas to help you get started: 9 Environmentally-Friendly Products for a More Sustainable Home – Shabby Chic Boho.