At Compass Homes, we build homes with More Thought Per Square Foot so that you can worry less and enjoy your dream home for years to come. Our homes are well thought out & efficient, and full of warmth, grace, charm, and character. While it’s important to build sustainable homes, it also is important to live sustainably within your home.
Here are 7 simple ways to keep an eco-friendly home:
Reduce Energy Usage
Cut down on energy consumption by developing simple habits like turning off lights when you leave and opting for a sweater during the winter rather than cranking up the heat. Be mindful to unplug appliances and electronics whenever reasonably possible to save “phantom power”, and of course always use high-efficiency appliances and light bulbs.
Don’t Take Water for Granted
While access to water is oftentimes taken for granted in developed countries, water scarcity is a growing global issue. Simple changes like turning off the water while you brush your teeth, wash your face, and shave, can make a big difference on your water usage. Install low-flow fixtures, such as shower-heads, faucets, and toilets that automatically limit the amount of water you are using. Go a step further by using a rain barrel to collect rainwater that you can later use to water your plants, garden, or even lawn.
When it comes to shopping for your groceries, or even plants and home goods, consider a trip to the local farmer’s market. The meat and produce are farm-fresh, and typically organic and non-GMO, and you are supporting a local farmer with your purchases. Wherever you shop, be sure to switch from plastic bags to reusable totes. Plastic bags can take up to 1,000 years to break down, and are often thrown out after one use. A fabric tote, however, can last for years and add a little style to your shopping trip.
Through the years, our world has become more convenient, but this convenience – in how things are packaged, used, and disposed of – has created a significant increase in waste. To live more sustainably, we must work to reduce the amount of waste we produce at home. Trade in your disposable plastic water bottle for one that is reusable, and whenever possible, recycle paper, plastics, and other waste, and limit the amount of garbage sent to the landfill.
A simple compost bin purchased at your local home store can easily turn food waste and kitchen scraps into natural nutrient-packed fertilizer. Store your leftover food in the bin and simply leave it be. Over time it will turn into useful compost that can be used in the garden.
Use Green Cleaners
It’s time to consider ways to swap out eco-friendly cleaners for those harsh detergents and cleaning products that you may be using to keep your home clean and smelling fresh. Common household items like baking soda, lemon juice or vinegar, can all be used in place of bleaches and detergents to kill bacteria and leave sustainable homes grease and odor-free. Bonus – consider using reusable rags instead of paper towels for cleaning.
We already know that we don’t like junk mail, and it’s a waste of paper, as well. Take the time to unsubscribe from companies that regularly send shopping catalogs and sort through your bills to figure out where you can go paperless. Regular statements such as monthly bank or electricity bills can be sent to your email instead – and it will be more accessible, secure, and organized for when you need to view them in the future.
Saving the environment can feel like a daunting task, so consider making small changes in your daily life that lend to keeping more sustainable homes. Overtime, even the smallest changes can make a big impact.