Going “green” can sound like an expensive and time consuming lifestyle switch for many people but that definitely is not the case. It’s true that being green can get expensive if you go about it in the wrong way. If you are spending $100 on an eco-friendly t-shirt or buying everything that uses the word “sustainable” in its marketing, you can really blow your budget. However, you can actually be green on a budget. In fact, if you do your research, you can leverage your sustainable lifestyle to help you save money over time. In this article, we’ll give you five tips for how you can do just that.
Skip single-use products
Single-use products refer to items that we purchase and only use once. For example, these can include paper towels, disposable utensils, and paper napkins. You may have to spend a little bit of money to get cleaning rags, cloth napkins, or a dedicated set of utensils to pack with your work lunch, but you’ll save money in the long run. For example, you won’t have to buy a new pack of paper towels or plastic utensils every few weeks, and you’ll save the environment by using less paper and plastic.
Participate in the sharing economy
These days, many communities throughout the U.S. have created Facebook or other social networking groups where people share items they no longer need or want for free. Members of the community who need certain items, like baby supplies or even furniture, can post requests on these social networking platforms. We’re always outgrowing or losing interest in things. Instead of throwing these items in the trash, we can offer them to other people and, in turn, also benefit from their generosity.
Grow Your Own Produce
Groceries are one of the largest expenses for any household. One of the best ways to help cut down on your grocery bill is to grow your own produce. You don’t have to have a green thumb to get started either. Easy to grow produce like squash, tomatoes and peppers are just some of the produce that don’t require much maintenance. To save you even more money, don’t throw away your produce scraps. Vegetables like celery, romaine lettuce, cabbage, onions, garlic and more can regrow from the ends.
If you don’t have a lot of land, you can also make an indoor garden too. Pro tip: before your produce goes bad, chop and freeze it so you don’t have to throw it out.
Go green by making your own household cleaners
Going more “green” with household cleaning products is very popular. The number of natural cleaning products on the market are a plenty. With that being said, buying a natural cleaner from the store is not your only option. Making your own ‘green’ household cleaners, is not hard and will save you money while also helping the environment.
For example, basic household items like baking soda and white vinegar, are the base for many different household cleaners. If you have a dollar store in your area, you can get both for $2 and you will be set. Talk about saving money.
Make small changes
Completely overhauling your life to be green all at once will probably cost a lot of money, since you would need to make some drastic changes in a short period of time. However, you can start small and make impactful, inexpensive changes that build on one another. Also, as you notice how your changes positively affect your life and help you save money, then you’ll be more inclined to make additional changes in the future. Try taking shorter showers, biking to work, and washing all your clothes with cold water – all these actions can add up to something greater!