Monday, January 30, 2017

9 Easy Ways to Become a Green Homeowner

My husband and I are pretty conscientious and do our best to contribute to maintaining a good environment for our community.  While some of these seemingly simple and cost effective steps are easy to implement, others may take forming a new habit or way of operating. Here's our experience in becoming more of a Green homeowner.

1. Recycle - easy to do!  Most community waste management services now provide recycling bins. We have gotten pretty diligent in separating glass bottles, paper and aluminum into their respective bins.  While the amount in our trash bin is far less than it used to be, I know we can make more progress toward reducing the waste that goes to landfills.

2. Save Water - easier for Scott than I!  Changing out the shower heads and faucets to low-flow models was easy.  Taking shorter showers, turning off the water while brushing teeth and not letting the water run while washing dishes is something I continue to work on.

3. Reduce Electricity - This is easier for me than Scott! I am often turning off lights around the house and the TV, often left on when Scott leaves the room for a period of time.  Habits can be hard to break I guess 😉.  Another suggestion made to reduce electricity is to unplug computers and other electronic devices or appliances when not in use. Incorporating some of these steps, or all, will help save energy and save you money on your electric bill.

4. Replace Light Bulbs - Yep - Done! In as many light fixtures as we can, we have replaced CFL bulbs with the LED form.  It took a bit of time as we wanted to wait until the old ones blew out, but now only buy to high efficiency bulbs when we need them.

5. Double up on Printing - Save our Trees!  Our mode of operation now is to keep most things online - we'll send an article from the internet to our email to share or read at a later time, or just keep articles in a documents folder.  When we do need to print, we do double side when possible.

6. Support Local Farms - Love Farmer's Markets!  Yep, we often will go to the Saturday or Tuesday evening Market in Hillsboro to pick up vegetables, and we berry pick in the summer for homemade jams.  This helps cut back on delivery truck gas and oil used to ship produce to stores - and supports our local businesses.

Other suggestions for becoming a Green homeowner that haven't made it into our routine include:

7. Drying Clothes Outside - hanging your clothes outside will help reduce the amount of energy used in the home by the dryer.

8. Drive Less - Walking or biking to work, or buying a hybrid car versus an SUV are some ways you might implement this idea. Due to Scott and I being in the Real Estate industry, we rely on our vehicles to show homes, get to inspections, etc. and need the right vehicle to do the work properly.

9. Conserve Rain Water - Set up barrels in your back yard to collect rain water/snow for watering plants and shrubs - and indoor plants as well.  Scott and I have begun to compost, and it would be easy to add a barrel in the back yard for rain water!

What 'Green' steps have you been able to 
implement in your own home?

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