Bring Sustainability Home! (and cut your costs)

Bring Sustainability Home! (and cut your costs) 

The first step to going green at home is talking to those you live with: your roommates, housemates, your family, or whoever impacts your home decisions.  Ask them to brainstorm ways to be more sustainable while saving money. In this time of uncertainty, saving money is more important than ever, so most of the suggestions here can help reduce expenses: 

What are some sustainable practices that save you money? Here are some suggestions- challenge your household to pick at least 10 options to implement over the next month:

Transportation:

Laundry:

  • Wool Dryer Balls cut drying time/energy for laundry by helping separate and air out clothes in the dryer 
  • Wash laundry in cold water saves 90% energy over hot- and preserves colors and fabrics
  • Hang your clothes to dry (this will preserve them as well) 
  • Consider installing a heat pump dryer to save 20%-60%

Bathrooms:

Kitchen: 

Energy: 

Purchases:

  • DIY upcycled crafts for gifts/cards
  • Downsizing the size of your home to something smaller, and in a walkable/bikeable area with public transit
  • Buy used (Facebook Marketplace, Craigslist, ebay, or thrift stores) 
  • Buy things that will last instead of fast fashion, quick trends, or low-quality things that could break/fall apart easily 
  • Switch from gas to electric (stoves, heaters, etc) 
  • Get clean energy! Even if you can’t afford panels, you can get a PPA, or if you rent, you can pay your energy bill to renewable energy providers

Yard:

  • Use your balcony or backyard to grow vegetables or plant a pollinator garden
  • Explore and use green landscaping practices for your plants, yard, and trees
  • care for your trees—make sure you are watering, pruning, and mulching correctly to ensure healthy trees
  • Switch to solar-powered or LED outdoor lighting
  • Trade gas-powered equipment for manual or electric versions

Communicating your values, goals, and intentions with others can inspire them to follow suit! Asking them for their input, advice, and ideas can help motivate them to take action with you. If you live with your family or housemates, it will be easier to implement changes if everyone is part of the process of setting goals, determining strategies, and implementing improvements! Make it a team effort with your household! And, share your list and progress with others too- post to social media, or send a message to a handful of close friends, neighbors, or relatives, about the savings you noticed and how you achieved them!