Have you been wanting to make your home more sustainable, but you are not sure how to start? It can be tough to know how to be eco-friendly. Here are 6 projects you can take on which will help make your home more sustainable.
1. Green landscaping
Get rid of the lawn, which is a huge waste of water and resources, and think about green-scaping. This involves planting plants or wildflowers that are native to your area or replacing some of your grass with rocks, gravel, or turf.
Plant trees on your property to take advantage of their shade. A shaded house can save on cooling costs, and trees can also improve the air quality and are great for your mental health. Starting a garden is also another great way to become more sustainable. When you grow your own veggies or fruits, you won’t need to buy them from the store. They usually taste better because they haven’t been transported on a truck or sprayed with pesticides. Growing your own food will not only save you some money, but it diminishes transportation waste.
2. Solar panels
Install solar panels on your roof. This can drastically cut down on electricity costs and even make you net positive in electricity generation. If you are worried about financing solar panels, they are often subsidized or can be used as a tax deductible. Check local or state policies to make sure.
3. Rainwater collection
By harvesting the rain that comes from your roof, you can then sustainably use this for your household. It can replace all or a substantial amount of your household’s needs. You can use rainwater to water your outdoor lawn and garden, flush the toilet, wash clothes, and clean your car. It can even be used for cooking and cleaning when properly filtered and disinfected.
Rainwater collection systems can range from simple barrels under a downspout to complex systems that collect from everywhere in your home and connect to your pipes after filtering. These systems are particularly effective in places with a lot of rain, such as Florida. Paying for a new system can seem like a lot, but with PACE financing Florida, your new system will almost pay for itself.
Instead of throwing away your waste, consider starting a compost system. Not only is it a much greener way to reduce waste usage, but it can help your garden as well. There are many easy tutorials online on how to get started.
Replacing your old insulation with environmentally sustainable insulation can be done by using recycled materials without harmful chemicals. When making the switch, be aware that your old insulation might contain asbestos, which is a highly toxic material. After safely disposing of it, you want to install better insulating and environmentally friendly material. Some materials to look at are loose-fill cellulose, cotton, foam, and straw-clay.
6. Replace and refit
Consider switching out your old or inefficient appliances and electronics in your home with more eco-friendly kinds. This will not only make your home more sustainable but will save you money on utility bills. Some things to consider include:
- Replacing your light bulbs with LEDs. This will cut down on your electricity bill because LEDs are not only extremely efficient, but they last much longer than traditional incandescent light bulbs.
- Buying a smart thermometer. A smart thermometer can keep your home at the ideal temperature and reduce waste. You can also adjust them on the fly, even when you are not at home.
- Using energy-efficient appliances. Energy Star appliances are at least 20-40% more efficient with electricity than non-qualifying ones.
- Using low-flow toilets. Low-flow toilets in your bathroom will save gallons of water every time you flush, reducing your water waste and your water bill.
These are just a few ways that you can make your home more sustainable. Remember, no step is too small!