Ways to Go Green While Living in an Apartment

bigstock-Idea-Of-Beeing-A-Happy-House-O-7140006People often think they need to own a home to go green, but green living can be done any time and no matter where you live. Green living not only helps save the environment, but can help you save on your utility bills in your apartment. While some of these green items might be left up to your property manager, others you can do during your lease and remove when you move.

Start Using Reusable Water Bottles

Plastic water bottles that you drink out of and dispose of every time is wasteful. Even with recycling these water bottles add up over time. Instead of using disposable water bottles buy reusable plastic water bottles. These often range from $4 to $8 and have double-wall insulation to keep your drinks cool.

The same goes for your morning coffee. Ditch the paper cups given to you by your barista and bring your own insulated mug. Coffee shops are more than happy to fill a travel mug with your favorite coffee beverage.

Opt Out

Junk mail is something no one wants or needs, but it is still received and thrown in the garbage. Opt out of junk mail by registering your address online. This will reduce the amount of mail you have to go through every day and the amount of waste generated by spammers.

Plant Your Own Container Garden

Ask your property manager if it is alright to have a garden hanging off your balcony. Some apartments have strict rules about what you can hang on a balcony railing. If it is approved, grow your own vegetables and herbs using a balcony container gardening method. It’s easy to maintain and saves you money, because you’re not having to buy produce at the store — and you’re in control of what is on your vegetables.

Use Smart Power Strips

Smart power strips allow you to plug multiple items into them at once. When the items aren’t in use, such as when you go to bed, turn off the entire strip to conserve energy and save on your own utility bills.

Water Saving Shower Heads

A lot of apartment complexes are making the switch to water conserving shower heads already, but if yours hasn’t caught on, ask your property manager if it is alright to switch yours out. They use less water, but still provide you with a good shower experience. In most cases you won’t even notice the difference.

Switch Cleaning Products

There are non-toxic all natural cleaning products out there that don’t contain harsh chemicals. They’re safer for the environment and yourself. If you suffer from allergies or have sensitive skin, these natural cleaners could reduce the number of issues you have each year. Most non-toxic cleaners can be made at home too using ingredients like baking soda, vinegar and dish soap. If you don’t want to make your own, buy organic non-toxic cleaners at the store. They clean just as well and are safe to use on most materials — unlike traditional cleaners.

Jan 2014