When I told my husband I wanted to go green with our home and family I got a couple odd looks from him. He never tells me no when I truly want something but he does shake his head and give me that look of internal laughing. He always has even when I announced that I wanted to cloth diaper our son. One thing I never expected when we started this journey is that we would save money and with every simple step we take. We discovered how going green can really save you money.
Start small and work up to a green lifestyle
We started small by looking for ways to replace things we buy that just go into the trash. Cloth diapering has been a big saver both on our families trash and our bank account. So I started with other items like that. Flour sack towels start in the kitchen in place of paper towels. The absorbent nature of flour sack towels lets them do pretty much everything I could ask for. Once the crisp clean white loses its vibrancy or picks up stains we toss them into the diaper pile helping keep my cloth diaper stash strong. Once diapers get worn with holes they are used for the worst messes or cut up and composted.
There are so many other places where we can ditch disposable items and save money. Razors can be switched to models with longer lasting replaceable blades. While this may cost more, in the beginning, you will save big money over the years. Swap sponges for washable dish clothes and invest in extra cheap dishes for entertaining instead of opting for disposables.
When the coffee pot died I made the choice to replace it with a french press that uses no electricity for my daily coffee. This style also means no plastic that will one day end up in the trash. The entire device is recyclable and no filters to kill trees. Not only is this a greener coffee maker it also gives you amazing quality coffee. The best part? No electric and no disposable parts means we get to save money.
Swapping your cleaning supplies can go a long way for both going green and saving money. Ditch the chemical cleaners and make your own natural alternatives for less with a few basic ingredients for homemade cleaners. If you like to use dryer sheets to help make your laundry smell fresh and reduce static give dryer balls a try to help reduce dryer time, reduce static cling and by adding a few drops of your favorite essential oil you can make your laundry smell fresh with natural scents for less.
Change your shopping and food habits to go green.
Reduce the impact your family makes on the planet when it comes to food by choosing to shop locally. Stop by your local farmers market to buy fresh locally grown producers. Shop retailers that stock locally grown produce like Aldi that marks local produce. Not only will you save money because when you buy imported foods you are also paying for the foods travel you will be reducing your families carbon footprint.
You can even visit a you pick form and pick your own fruits and vegetables. We loved our experience visiting the orange groves in Florida. Support small farms by joining a local CSA. Bring your own reusable produce bags to help reduce your kitchen waste and work towards a waste-free kitchen.
One of the best things we can do to save money and go green is to grow our own food as much as possible. For some, it will be small pots for others a large garden plot. Work with what you have. Grab a bin and make your own compost. This will help you grow amazing food without the high cost of fertilizers while keeping food out of landfills.
Don’t buy water bottles. Buy a reusable water bottle for daily use and take it around with you. Provide your family with better than tap water by investing in a water filtration system. In the long run, you will save large amounts of money while reducing plastic waste.
Save Energy and Save Big
One thing we often overlook when we go green is the daily impact we have on the plant. All of the lights we leave on, devices we have running all day long, and gas we use to get back and forth not only puts a strain on the planet it does on our pocketbooks as well.
Take the time to switch lights to LEDs and turn them off when not in use. Open the curtains to let the sunshine in instead. Opt to upgrade to more eco-friendly options like a programmable thermostat or a tankless water heater. Give your furnace and air conditioners regular tune-ups so they run on as little power as possible. Make a point of spending less time on electronic devices.
While not all green practices will help your family save money you would be surprised how many things we can do for the planet that in turn benefit us as a whole.