870As a parent, I often find myself thinking about the future – for myself and the husbeast, and also for Mini and Maxi. There’s so much to be wary of, both in personal health and the environment. A home is all about being a safe haven, and it’s naïve to think that small changes are unable to make a difference. So, I’ve explored different ways I can make steps towards and greener, healthier and (hopefully) happier home.
1. Make the most of natural light
Natural light is a great source of heat and light; not to mention it’s cost-effective and environmentally conscious. Rather than buying a new lamp or turning on all of the lights, look around and see if you can utilise the natural light better. Open up your curtains and blinds, and move any obstructing furniture to let the light cascade around your home.
2. Grow indoor plants
Indoor plants make the home feel fresh. They act as natural filters for the air, and some are especially good at absorbing indoor toxins, such as Bamboo Palm and Peace Lily. If you’re known for having a particularly black thumb, there’s no need to worry either. Many indoor plants are low maintenance – plus they look great as decorative pieces.
3. Compost your scraps
Unused scraps from the kitchen are ideal for compost. Tea leaves, fruit and vegetables, egg shells – pretty much anything that’s biodegradable. If you mix them with trimming from the garden and a bit of water, you’ve got a great natural fertiliser and doing your part in reducing landfill.
It might be an obvious one, but it can easily be forgotten in busy households. Separate your cardboard, plastic and metal ready for collection. Head to GOV.UK’s recycling collections page and enter your postcode to find out more about what you can do.
5. Fill the sink when washing up
When you’re doing the dishes, filling the sink uses just a small portion of what you’d normally waste by leaving the tap running. If you use a dishwasher, wait until it’s full until you set it going. This is also good practice with your washing machine!
6. Install carbon monoxide detectors
Carbon monoxide is a silent killer. It’s odourless, so you’d never even know it’s there until it’s too late. By making a small investment in a carbon monoxide detector, you can prevent poisoning very easily.
7. Switch to energy-saving lightbulbs
Fluorescent light bulbs use as little as a quarter of the electricity a regular light bulb uses. Not only are they more cost-effective in the long-term, they can last up to 10 times longer as well.
8. Unplug unused appliances
An electrical appliance on standby can still be draining electricity and increasing your bills. By unplugging when it’s not in use (which is most of the time!), you can save yourself a lot of money.
9. Fix pesky leaks
If you’ve got a leaky tap or a hole in the wall that’s needed repairs for a while, get them fixed as soon as you can. By making your home more insulated and preventing wastage from leaks, your utility bills can drop by a significant amount.
10. Buy reusable
There are masses of household items which we don’t think twice about throwing away after use. Rather than using once and throwing away, buy reusable to save space on the landfill and save money on replacements. This includes reusable razors, rechargeable batteries and plastic containers rather than tin foil and cling film.
11. Go full sustainable
This isn’t an option for everyone, and that’s okay. However, if you’ve got the money to spend and are fully committed, you can invest in long-term solutions for your home. Install solar panels for a new energy source, and redecorate using non-toxic paints and wood flooring from sustainable sources.
By utilising these tips for a greener home, you’ll feel much better about the impact you’re having on the environment. Not only that, but you’ll watch your utility bills drop significantly if you stick to the saving!