With carbon emissions and sea levels on the rise, the tides are changing for the next generation of homeowners and it seems other generations are looking to follow suit. Our carbon footprints are the stains we leave on the earth and if you are looking to reduce yours, here are some useful tips for more sustainable living.
1. Roof insulation and double/triple glazed windows
Starting from 2025, the Government plans to raise the minimum ‘energy performance certificate’ rating from an ‘E’ to a ‘C’ or above. This is to make homeowners and landlords more mindful of their property’s impact on the environment. You can raise your EPC rating by adjusting your home’s heating. Having good insulation will reduce wasted heat and therefore your home will have a smaller carbon footprint.
2. Working from home
Working from home has reduced thousands of people’s carbon footprints as there is no longer a need to travel to the office five days a week. If you have been offered the opportunity to work from home, you will not only save on carbon emissions, but you will save some extra money, too.
3. Reduce, reuse, recycle
Hang your shopping bags by the door so you don’t forget to grab one on your way out, and you can keep an eye on how many you are collecting. Repurposing and recycling are two impactful steps you can take as an individual to help the environment, as one more thing you reuse is one less thing ending up in a landfill.
4. Go green
The more plants the better; indoor plants absorb bad air and carbon dioxide to produce fresh oxygen. If greenery is your aesthetic choice, avoid wasteful plastic and faux plants and opt for the real deal. The best part is that once you have a thriving myriad of plants, you can keep propagating them so that one plant can become a collection - the same goes for herbs, too.
5. Turn off the tap
Water is worth saving, as carbon emissions are caused by transporting the water to and from your house and treating it before and after it is used. Turn off the tap while brushing your teeth, during your skincare routine, or in between washing dishes.
6. Stop wasting clothes
Before you throw away that old jumper that hasn’t left your wardrobe in years, you should know that most clothes contain plastic, which means it can take hundreds of years to break down in a landfill and will contaminate the environment with dyes and chemicals. A great way to avoid wasting clothes is by ensuring that your home has ample storage space. Large wardrobes and storage boxes will protect your clothes from damage and provide enough space for both old and new items, so there is no need to throw them out. If you find yourself running out of storage room, selling and donating are two of the best ways to recycle clothes.
7. Stop wasting food
Food takes months' worth of labour, water and land to produce before being delivered to our shops. Avoid food waste by storing food correctly and at the right temperature, donating long-life unused items to local food banks and composting scraps such as vegetable and fruit peel in your garden rather than the bin.
8. Switch to LED lighting
LEDs will help reduce costs over the long run and they are much more environmentally friendly. This is because they last longer, and they do not need to be replaced regularly which means less waste. LEDs do not contain any mercury, which is toxic to the environment. They also reduce your home’s carbon footprint as they do not require as much energy to power them.
9. Sustainable home interior
By choosing energy-efficient technologies such as solar panels, appliances with higher EE ratings, and opting for textiles like wool, linen and hemp, you can make your home’s interior more sustainable. When it comes to lowering your carbon footprint, reducing the impact of your waste is key, so choose items for your interior that are inherently less impactful.
10. Low-carbon, more sustainable gardens
There are countless ways you can reduce your carbon emissions through gardening. Make use of recycled plastic items for planters, add your own compost pit to reduce waste sent to landfills, collect rainwater for watering plants, and plant trees to absorb carbon dioxide. These simple steps will reduce the amount of waste your home produces and as a bonus, your garden will be blooming and full of life.
Looking for a property that fits your lifestyle? Contact your local Fine & Country agent today to start your journey.