If your New Year’s resolution is to go green, you’ll be pleasantly surprised to discover that you’ll also save some green. How many of these earth friendly ideas will you try this year?
The Return of the Clothesline – Start using a clothesline, and you’ll save nearly 6% on your monthly electric bill according to the Department of Energy…plus your house will be quieter & cooler! If your city or homeowners association prohibits clotheslines, your best option is a clothes drying rack (available at Target, Walmart and Bed Bath & Beyond for about $30). I use my drying rack until the clothes are almost dry, and then I pop them in the dryer for about 10 minutes to fluff them up. So, let’s do the math…if your monthly electric bill is $200, your friend the clothesline just saved you about $12 a month & $144 a year!
Burn Calories, Not Gas – Walking or riding bikes is budget friendly, earth friendly and figure friendly…so, what do you have to lose? Maybe a few pounds???? Let’s here it for pedal power!
Consider Carpools – Could you organize a carpool for work, school or after school activities? You’ll save both time and gas!
Plan Ahead – Are you guilty of running errands every single day or making two trips to the store because you didn’t make a list? There’s more to life than errands, and planning ahead will save you both time and gas money.
Slow Down – Driving 65 miles per hour uses 15% more gas than driving 55 miles per hour – that’s like paying 40 cents more per gallon! Of course, you’ll likely be the only one on the highway going 55!
Pay Bills Online – Save trees, save stamps, save money!
Find a Farmer’s Market – Discover your local farmer’s market, and your budget will love the prices and you’ll love the fresh taste of just picked produce! To find a farmer’s market near you, visit LocalHarvest.org and enter your zip code.
Stop Junk Mail – Save trees, save your sanity! It only takes a minute to visit DMAChoice.org to remove your name from mailing lists for catalogs, insurance offers and more!
Reusable Lunch Containers – Instead of a brown bag, carry a lunch box. Instead of zip top bags, invest in reusable bags. You’ll spend a little money upfront, but you’ll save money in the long run.
Stop Buying Bottled Water – Bottled water has become the American way, and up until a few years ago…I was guilty of buying a 24-pack every single week! WOW…that’s $4 a week, $16 a month and $208 a year for WATER! Stop buying bottled water and start buying refillable bottles for your family to take to work, school and sports.
Unplug – Phantom Electricity is the electricity that is used when a device is plugged in but not in use. For example…you leave your cell phone charger plugged in all the time, but you only charge your phone every few days…did you know that your charger is still using electricity when it is plugged in but not charging? This is “Phantom Electricity”, and little bits are being used throughout your home everyday hence the name “phantom.” Wasted electricity is not earth friendly, and wasted electricity is wasting your money!
Recycle, Recycle, Recycle – If you’re not recycling, this is a great week to start! The first step is to have a system and make sure everybody in your family understands it! The Budget Diet girl’s system is two trash cans in the kitchen – one for recycling and one for trash. After a few weeks, recycling will become a habit, and your neighbors will be green with envy when you only have one small bag of trash each week!
Homemade Cleaning Products – Make the switch to homemade cleaning products that cost pennies to make and clean just as well without harsh chemicals. Try these recipes for homemade cleaning products.
Repurpose – Look twice at things before throwing them away! Could you cut off the fronts of some of your Christmas cards to use a gift tags next year? Could you paint an old piece of furniture or spray paint a chandelier to give it new life? Save nice glass jars for giving gifts like my 2-ingredient DIY Coconut Sugar Scrub. You’ll never have to buy a box for shipping if you save a stash!
Free Plants – free plants are almost always available on Craigslist and Freecycle.
Compost – your new free plants will love this dirt!
GO GREEN AND SAVE SOME GREEN!