Saturday, June 13, 2009

GREEN LIVING: 23 Tips to Make Your Apartment a Green Paradise!

SAN FRANCISCO - JANUARY 31:  A worker at the C...Image by Getty Images via Daylife

23 Tips to Make Your Apartment a Green Paradise! by Venson Foster

Believe it or not most people who live in an apartment think they can't "Go Green". But they can and save some money at the same time. There are plenty of simple things apartment dwellers as well as anyone else can do no matter where they call home. You don't need any fancy gadgets or new technology just a little effort and common sense.

1. Be selective about your apartment. If your going to share your apartment make sure its with a like-minded person with eco-friendly values. Try to get an apartment that is close to your job and other places that you frequent, so that you can ride your bike or walk.

2. Turn off the TV, lights, and close the refrigerator door. Many of us turn on the TV or lights the very second we step into a room. We don't necessarily need them its just habit, so we will have some noise going on in the background. Try not to have this noise for a while and you will be surprised at how calming this is for your mind.

3. Replace incandescent light bulbs with fluorescents. Over time this will save you a large amount of energy and money. It will also help remove greenhouse gases from the air.

4. There are several small thing that can be done from the start to make your apartment energy efficient. Things like weather stripping your windows and doors which will reduce your energy bill. Hanging blinds and sun shielding shades will give you more control over the amount of light in your room without using electricity and it will also help control temperature in your house so you won't have to run your heat and air as much.

5. Try not to use plastic bags whenever possible. Plastic bags continue to be one of the worst things for the environment because we usually discard them after they pile up in our storage bins. Try to reuse them to take your lunch to work or line a small trash can.

6. Before buying new products and clothes shop at consignment shops and thrift stores. Usually you can find all that you need and help the environment by reusing items instead of throwing them in the trash.

7. Saving water will save energy so it is one of the best ways to go green in your apartment. If you can try to install low-flush toilets if not use a milk jug filled with stones and place it in your toilet tank to displace water and use less to fill the tank. Turn the water off when while brushing your teeth, take shorter showers, don't use hot water for your laundry. Cold water works well also and only run your dishwasher and washing machine with a full load.

8. Use non-toxic detergents and cleaners. Since WWII about 75,000 chemicals have been placed on the market but less than 5% of them have been properly tested for environmental and health side effects. Clean your toilet bowl and windows with vinegar or use baking soda on your counter tops. There are several alternatives to harmful cleaning chemicals.

9. Use old t-shirts and PJ's as bedding for dogs and cats. Do this instead of spending money at the pet shop, use your old clothes until they get too dirty and then throw them away.

10. Use alternative light sources such as candles instead of electricity. Use things like old coke bottles or wine bottles to light up your room with a cozy glow.

11. Grow your own food. It can be done in an apartment with a few window boxes, balcony area or porch you would be surprised at how much food you could grow in different containers.

12. Try to find reduced packaging. Many companies are using less packing materials on their products. Less packaging equals less trash in landfills.

13. If you like to read newspapers reuse them. Use them as extra filler in mailings or gifts. Also a little of watered down vinegar in a spray bottle will give you a streak-free shine when used with old newspapers to clean windows.

14. Open your windows and doors and stop using your central heat constantly. You'll get some fresh air while saving yourself some money.

15. Look for minimal processing in different kinds of furniture. Most furniture contain varnishes and resins that are more chemicals brought into your home. Try to look for organic drapes, clothing, and bedding its time consuming but worth it.

16. Stay away from volatile organic compounds, or VOCs. They can be introduced through carpets, paints, cleaning agents, and furnishings.

17. Try to maintain your energy efficient appliances such as your refrigerator. You may need to have a repairman come out once a year, but its worth it from a cheaper energy bill stand point.

18. Add some plants to your apartment. Per one hundred square feet only two plants are needed. They will spread out over time and clean toxins in the air.

19. Recycle your paper. If you print a lot some of this paper is only used on one side. Save them and cut them into halves or fourths for scrap paper.

20. If your plants or apartment have bugs, try soaking a citrus rind in water for a couple days. Pour the water into a pump bottle and spray on plants both inside and out.

21. Check and change your air conditioning filter when needed. AC and other appliances with a filter run better and cost less to operate when the filter is changed regularly.

22. Buy as much organic products and food as you can from suppliers. This will increase demand and lower the price.

23. Quit Smoking. Nuff said!!!!!

We must act now and going green is both easy and rewarding and if you need some extra cash to help you turn your apartment or house into a Green waste free zone simply log on to for complete video tutorials, and tons of other training and ideas to make money fast.

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