It’s Earth Day today, which is a great day to remind us to try and live greener lives. This is good because being green and eco-friendly can actually save you money!
A lot of people think you have to spend a lot of money being green, which may be the case for things like installing solar panels or replacing appliances with energy efficient counterparts, but there are many simple things you can do that save money and are good for the planet.
Ready to do your part? Here are just a few easy tips:
Shop At Thrift Stores & Resale Shops
Shopping at resale shops is a great way to help other people recycle their stuff and get new to you clothes, accessories, books, and more for a steal! Plus, it’s fun to dig around at a Thrift shop and see what interesting things you discover. Make sure to donate your unwanted items as well (and get a receipt for the tax write off!). This cycle keeps perfectly good items out of the landfill and puts them to good use again.
Bring Your Own Water Bottle
Drinking lots of water is good for you. Buying bottled water is not. And most bottled water is just tap water anyway. Cut out the middle man, save the petroleum used to transport and bottle the water and just carry your own reusable water bottle. Get a snazzy stainless steel or BPA-Free Plastic Water Bottle. I carry one with me everywhere, so I always have water on hand when I’m thirsty.
Grow Your Own Veggie’s and Herbs
Gardening is a fun active hobby. It can save you money in the long run by reducing the amount of produce and fresh/dried herbs you buy at the grocery store. That in turn helps the planet by reducing the carbon footprint of transporting those foods from the farm to your store. Even if you don’t have a yard to garden in, patio and container gardening are a great option for apartment and city dwellers. (Learn more about gardening at Better Gardener’s Guide.)
Unless there was a cooking fiasco, save your leftovers! Then make sure to eat them! By doing this you make sure no food goes to waste. This can save you time and energy since you won’t have to cook a future meal from scratch. Take the leftovers for lunch the next day: you’ll save money eating in instead of going out to eat.
Pay Bills Online
Almost every bill you have–credit card, electricity, cell phone, cable, even those pesky student loans–can be paid online. This saves you the cost of the stamp, which can really add up over the years. Elect to receive your bills via email and help the planet even more by getting rid of the paper version of your bills.
Use Reusable Cleaning Products
Makes rags or buy reusable cloths for Swiffer sweepers and mops. This saves you money that would be spent on sponges or paper towels.
While You’re At It, Get Rid of the Paper Towels
Even if you’re not ready to take the plunge and get rid of paper towels completely, you can seriously decrease your consumption by using cloth napkins and rags. This saves you money and saves trees.
Make Money Recycling Your Gadgets or Books
I’m going to guess that most 20 somethings have old cell phones, mp3 players, digital cameras, and other electronic gadgets lying around. You know, things you iPhone replaced. Well instead of tossing them out or leaving them to gather dust in a drawer somewhere, you can these items and even get cash for them. And those best sellers you read years ago or your Mom bought you for your birthday even though you hate the genre: sell those too, and give them a second chance. Those textbooks from college that you know you’ll never read again are great candidates for this.
Have any other tips on how to save money and be eco-friendly? Share them in the comments!
Looking for Earth Day freebies or deals? Check out the posts at The Thrifty Mama and Common Sense With Money.