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Green Living Tips

Moving into a new house is the perfect time to get into the routine of green living. Adapting to a new lifestyle goes hand and hand with adapting to a new environment. So with that in mind, here's a list of Green Living tips to get you started. And don't forget to check out our Green Moving tips as well.

Use green cleaning products.
Purchase Green Works products by Clorox.  Or make your own cleaners by using simple ingredients such as plain soap, water, baking soda (sodium bicarbonate), vinegar, washing soda (sodium carbonate), lemon juice and borax and save money at the same time.

Recycle everything you can’t reduce or reuse. Check with your local council or environmental authority to find out what and where you can recycle.  Your community may have a recycle bank in which you can earn money, coupons, and gift certificates, just for recycling properly.

"Paper or plastic?" 
Bring your own cloth bags to the store.
Save a tree, use less paper.  Save paper!
Can you believe that around the world we use 1 million tons of paper every day? Use both sides of paper you write and print out on.  Collect [paper and use it for scrap that the kids can scribble and draw on. You can buy "tree-free" 100% post-consumer recycled paper for everything from greeting cards to toilet paper. Paper with a high post-consumer waste content uses less virgin pulp and keeps more waste paper out of landfills.

Use fewer plastics. 
Buy reusable thermoses. Each year, Americans throw away some 100 billion polyethylene plastic bags — from grocery and trash bags to those ultra-convenient sandwich bags. Unfortunately, plastics are made from petroleum — the processing and burning of which is considered one of the main contributors to global warming, according to the EPA. In addition, sending plastics to the landfill also increases greenhouse gases. Reduce, re-use and recycle your plastics for one of the best ways to combat global warming.

Turn things off!
Turn off electronics.  A power strip is a practical way to switch off multiple things at once. Don’t leave chargers for mobile phones plugged in when you’re not using them.

Don’t waste food
Grow your own food and buy only what you need. We waste a lot of food. It rots in the fridge or is thrown in the trash at the end of a meal. When you consider the amount of energy that is used to grow, ship, process and store this food it is an incredible waste or resources.  In the US, 14% of food purchased at the grocery store is thrown away.

Turn the water faucet off
Do not let the water run while shaving, brushing teeth, or washing dishes. Use basins for washing and rising. Reuse water from washing vegetables to water plants and clean.

8 minute Shower
Take a short shower instead of a bath if possible. Make sure the water thermostat isn’t set above 60°C (140°F). Using less water in the shower means less energy to heat the water. Water-saving, low-flow showerheads deliver good performance for only half of the water use.

Create a green garden
First, use compost instead of synthetic fertilizers. Compost provides a full complement of soil organisms and the balance of nutrients needed to maintain the dirt without the chemicals of synthetic fertilizers. And healthy soil minimizes weeds and produces healthy plants, which prevents many pest problems from developing.

Purchase energy efficient light bulbs and appliances!
Replace all your lights with compact fluorescent lamps. They may cost more than ordinary lamps but you end up saving money because they use only around 25% of the electricity needed to provide the same light. They can save up to 80% on your next electric bill and last up to 8 times longer.  . If your appliances are more than 10 years old, the EPA suggests replacing them with energy-efficient models that bear their "Energy Star" logo. Energy Star-qualified appliances use 10%-50% less energy and water than standard models. Upgrade to an energy efficient refrigerator.  There may even be a tax credit in it for you! There are current offers form local electric companies, where they will buy your old appliances and dispose of it for you, when you opt to upgrade. Appliance use comprises about 18% of a typical home’s total energy bill, with the fridge being one of the biggest energy hogs.
Remember, being green isn’t about doing a complete 180 in your lifestyle. It’s about becoming aware of your actions and how they effect our planet.