The following is a guest post by Mariana Ashley.
Marketers would have us believe that living green means breaking our bank accounts. While it is true that many products claiming to be environmentally friendly can cost a fortune, this doesn’t have to be the case. Furthermore, there are plenty of aspects of green living that involve saving money. Follow these three tips and you will save money while also being environmentally forward.
One great way to save some money, while also being environmentally conscientious is cleaning green. Store bought cleaning solutions are riddled with chemicals that are not only dangerous for the environment, but also dangerous for you. However, buying the “all natural” cleaning products from the store can take a huge chunk out of your budget. Rather than buying all of the natural cleaning products, try mixing your own homemade cleaning solutions with everyday household items. Vinegar is one of the most efficient ways to remove stains and odor. Mix vinegar and water into a spray bottle and use it to clean floors and surfaces. Another great cleaning product is lemon. Lemons offer a fresh smell and have acids that are great for antibacterial purposes. Try using fresh lemon to clean cooking surfaces or tough kitchen stains. When combined with baking soda, lemon can be used as an even more powerful cleaning agent. These are great cleaning options for saving money and staying green.
Another simple way to save money and be green is by cutting down on your electricity usage. While this may be obvious and overused, I think that it is an important point to stress. Your energy bill is often one of the most expensive bills you pay each month. Try bumping up the temperature of your air conditioning by one or two degrees in the summer and lowering your heater by one or two degrees in the winter. You will cut back on the amount of energy you are using and, therefore, cut back your monthly bills. The other device that deserves special attention is your washing machine. Try washing your clothes with cold water, rather than hot. The majority of the energy used in washing clothes is in heating the water. By using cold water to wash clothes, you can use less energy and save more money.
Finally, another way to save a significant amount of cash and help the environment is by consuming less. Though we often fail to realize it, our food bill is typically the largest we pay each month. Because the phone bill, car payment, energy bill, cable bill, and all of those come at the same time and in the same fashion, we often overlook our monthly grocery bill when we plan our budgets. By buying less food we will be wasting less food and saving more money. Be sure to prepare a shopping list every time you go to the store. Once you get to the store stick to the list. Buy only the things that you know you need. All too often, people buy groceries that they already have and then food goes to waste along with money.
Living green tends to go hand-in-hand with living frugally. By following these tips you can significantly reduce your footprint on our planet while also significantly reducing the amount of money you spend.
Mariana Ashley is a freelance writer who particularly enjoys writing about online colleges.