How Environmentally Friendly Is Your Home?

There’s much to think about when you’re a homeowner, and for many people, the implication of how they run their home isn’t something that they’re overly concerned with. However, the simple truth of the matter is that people everywhere need to start thinking about how much energy they’re using. If you’re not sure how much of earth’s resources you’re using, you can find out by taking a short test that’ll determine your carbon footprint. If it’s higher than it should be, it might be time to start looking at making your home more environmentally friendly. Below, we offer seven ways you can do this, all the while retaining the comfort and style of your home.


Avoid New Products Where Possible


Part of the fun of owning a house is decorating it in your own style, upgrading your furniture when necessary and having a dwelling that’s all-around to your taste. For most people, this means heading out to Ikea or somewhere else and picking out the latest furniture pieces. However, if they are made of wood, then you’re using up some of the earth’s valuable resources – and even if it’s from a renewable source, it’ll likely have traveled a long way to your home. Instead, pick up the art of finding second-hand pieces. These will usually be local, and you won’t be cutting down any trees so that you can have a new table.


Use Energy Wisely


Nobody is suggesting that you should go back to living in the middle ages. The mod cons of 21st-century life should be a mainstay in your home. However, you should be getting and using your energy responsibly. Regularly servicing your boiler will keep your water hot, in an energy efficient way. Heat pumps are an excellent way to warm or cool your home, as it transfers air rather than producing its own. If you have space on your property, then installing solar panels can be an excellent way to provide your own energy – and save money on the bills in the long run, too.

Change Your Ways


While some energy mishaps can be rectified just by installing or servicing technology, you’ll still need to change your ways a little bit. Everybody is guilty of using more energy than they should; not because they don’t care about the environment, but because they’re not even aware of how much they’re actually using. Create a new ‘environmental code of conduct’ for your house, which will remind every family member to switch off lights, unplug consoles when they’re not in use, and otherwise be aware of how much energy they’re using.


The Goldilocks Approach


You need to have your thermostat set, and you also need hot water. But do both these things need to be quite as warm as they currently are? There’s no reason why the hot water that comes out of your tap should be too hot to touch; turn it down. Also, the idea of heating is to protect you from the cold, not to keep you unnaturally warm. If you’re walking around your home in a t-shirt and shorts when it’s January, then you can afford to turn the heating down a notch.


Upgrade Your Appliances


It’s only in recent times that companies have begun to pay attention to how much energy their appliances use. Even simple things, like a kettle that was bought ten years ago, say, can use far more energy than it should. You should generally use what you own until they come to the end of their lifespan, but if they’re using too much energy, then it’ll worth upgrading them.


In the Garden


One of the biggest expenses a home incurs is the food bill, and it’s what we eat that can sometimes do the most damage. If you have a garden, look at creating a vegetable patch. These are easy to set up, and have bags and bags of benefits, including getting your fit and healthy and producing delicious vegetables! Most importantly, it’ll mean you won’t have to buy vegetables that have traveled vast distances so that you could eat them. You’ll also be able to create a compost bin, so all those leftover food scraps can be put to good use rather than going to the landfill.


Just: Think


It’s a slow process making your home environmentally friendly. If you have the motivation and the ability to think about your eco-impact, then you’ll be on the right lines. In the meantime, try your best and enjoy the journey to becoming an eco-warrior!


  1. This is a great post Robin! You make some great points. A lot of people really aren’t aware of their carbon footprint or how much energy they’re actually using!

    Like you say, changing your habits can have a great affect. Remembering to turn off a light switch every night when you leave a room, over a period of time, can do wonders!

    What kind of aspects to you try and incorporate into your life, Robin?

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