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Steps Toward Making Your Home More Green

By, Lacie Martin, Guest Author

It sometimes takes very little to make a big difference in this world -- very little time, very little money, and very little effort. Making your home more green is one of those instances where it can take very little to make a big difference. If you’re not sure where to begin, check out these tips to make your home more environmentally friendly, brought to you by Simply Green Mums.

Small Steps, Big Leaps

Simple and small, these steps are such a snap you’ll barely notice the change in your lifestyle, yet you’ll make a big leap toward a greener home.

Bring Your Own Shopping bags. Take shopping bags with you instead of accepting disposable bags. You can even get paid by some retailers for bringing your own bags. For example, bringing your own bags to CVS will give you $1 off after every fourth shopping trip.

Coffee. Choose USDA certified organic coffee; it was grown using sustainable standards. When you’re on the go, take your own refillable mug. Many coffee shops will discount your fill-up.

Use Both Sides. When making copies or printing, set machines both at home and at work to print on both sides of the paper, cutting your usage down by half.

Shut down. Shut electronics down completely when not in use. For your convenience, plug multiple devices, such as your home entertainment system, into one UL-certified power strip. Switch off the entire system at the power strip to prevent phantom electrical draw. This Old House notes that unplugging your power tools when not in use is also effective; they only lose a small percentage of battery power each month and take just a few hours to fully recharge.

Go meatless. Among other concerns, raising livestock produces large quantities of greenhouse gases, and the damage is extensive. Real Simple points out that when a family of four eliminates just one meat meal per week, the environmental impact is about the same as driving a hybrid car. Think of the significance of going completely meatless.

Microwave choices. When heating foods in the microwave, use containers that are either ceramic or glass. Plastics that are “microwave safe” can withstand the temperatures of microwaving without becoming misshapen but still degrade at high heats. They also release chemicals into your food, as Healthline explains.

Email only. Reduce the paper coming into your home by eliminating junk snail mail. Request to receive your newsletters, catalogues, invoices, and bank statements via email instead.

Snuggle your pets. According to studies cited by the Huffington Post, 13 percent of pet owners cuddle their furry companions to stay warm in colder weather.

Bigger Steps For Bigger Benefits

With a few tweaks, you can turn small steps into big steps, and really reduce your carbon footprint. Here are some great ideas:

Improve insulation. Adding insulation to your home to reduce drafts and improve efficiency can lower your home’s energy draw by 20 to 30 percent. Even adding thermal shades and draft blockers at the base of doors will help.

Solar panels. You can eliminate your electric bill entirely by installing solar panels, and eventually the installation pays for itself. There are also government incentive programs and tax rebates for the installations. Additionally, these types of changes to your home can also improve its value should you decide to sell your home.

Go Green!

There are plenty of small steps you can take toward a greener home. Some are so easy that you’ll hardly notice a difference in your lifestyle. With some bigger investments, you can enjoy even bigger benefits, save more money, and use less energy, leaving a smaller carbon footprint and offering our environment better health. Make your home more green for a happier, healthier you, and a happy, healthier planet!

Lacie Martin, from Greenville, SC, created Raise Them Well to help inspire parents to raise their children well by prioritizing love over everything else. She firmly believes that all moms and dads raising kids who know they are loved and cared for are successful parents. You can follow Lacie at,

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