Renting CAN be Eco-Friendly. Choosing a greener design, a handy location, and energy-efficient features are just some of the simple hacks to make renting more environmentally friendly.
More and more people are becoming conscious of the environment and the problems we are facing. While it’s good for awareness of environmental issues to rise, there is much work to be done in sustaining a healthy planet for the future.
One way we can all play our part is by choosing eco-friendly lodging options and making adjustments at home that benefit the earth. If you’re currently shopping for an apartment, condo, or rental house, consider this advice on how you can identify which homes are eco-friendly!
Distance to Work
The automobile industry has come a long way in transitioning vehicles to produce fewer CO2 emissions. But the best way to reduce your carbon footprint during travel is still to limit how much you drive!
With that in mind, consider proximity to work and other routine activities when looking for your rental home.
More people are finding lodging close to their work and schools; not only does it benefit the environment, but walking or riding a bicycle or scooter is great for your health!
You can even apply this logic when you relocate to your new home. For example, if you will be using professional moving services, you can easily connect with reputable professionals by searching online for local movers.
Look at several companies to see which ones provide eco-friendly services by taking more efficient routes and eliminating waste where they can. Keep in mind that the movers will need to inspect your new home before providing you with an estimate and that you should always get the cost in writing.
Green Construction and Design
The materials used for construction and design can make a big difference when it comes to the carbon footprint left behind. This is because the construction process significantly impacts the volume of raw materials in the world.
Contact any apartment, condo, or landlord to inquire about which materials were used to build the structure. Some materials to look for include recycled steel beams, sustainably harvested wood, reclaimed fixtures, and VOC-free paint.
These days, there are not many drawbacks to using Energy Star-certified lightbulbs in your home. They use less energy, provide top-notch lighting quality, and last longer (which means less waste and lower replacement costs).
If you want to take your long-term savings and commitment to the environment to the next level, invest in halogen bulbs or ultra-efficient LED lights. Even if your new home does not have these types of lights when you move in, you can easily swap them for more efficient bulbs yourself.
Light bulbs aren’t the only type of product that receive Energy Star designations.
Appliances, digital products, buildings, and even corporate production plants can earn the right to be verified by the E3 Program, a government-backed symbol system that signals maximum energy efficiency.
When you invest in or use these solutions, you get to enjoy the confidence that comes with knowing you’re saving energy and protecting the environment by using products with low carbon footprints.
If the home you are thinking about moving into has Energy Star appliances, that is a big plus. Washing machines, dryers, dishwashers, and other appliances account for much of a home’s energy consumption, and certified appliances can reduce it dramatically. You might even want to double-check there is a washing line. Line drying laundry is a free, green way to be energy efficient.
Even adding your own smart thermostats can make a big difference!
If you want to significantly reduce your carbon footprint at home, ensuring that you minimize your electricity consumption through heating and cooling is a sure way to do it.
Evaluate the insulation in your new home (or potential new home) to see how well it accommodates the weather.
Adequate insulation and well-sealed doors and windows can help keep the HVAC’s air in your home, benefiting the planet while also saving you money.
In the event that your home has no or poor insulation, ask your landlord about installing some or ensuring that any gaps are caulked and any worn-out weatherstripping replaced.
If you are looking for a new rental home and want to do your part in preserving the planet, it will help to know what to look for as you assess different properties. Consider the information and advice above on your search, and keep looking for other ways that you can identify which homes are eco-friendly.
Keep in mind that efficiency upgrades are a win-win; not only do you do your part in reducing your carbon footprint, such updates can increase your home appraisal value. In no time, you will be settling into your comfortable new home with the peace of mind that you are making a real difference!
Tina Martin stays busy as a life coach and works hard to help herself and her clients achieve a healthy work-life balance. She started ideaspired.com as a side project to reach as many people as possible, and encourage them to put their dreams first. She is also working on her first book, Ideaspired: Put Your Ideas, Your Inspiration, and Yourself First to Make Your Dreams Come True.