Environment

Published on October 28th, 2020 | by Luke Fitzpatrick

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Going Green: 6 Tips To Create A More Eco-Friendly Home For Your Family

Creating a more eco-friendly home for your family should start with awareness of the products used inside your home. With these six tips, you can begin the journey to a healthier environment for your family.

Start small

Much like thinking about the small changes like the best paint colors when updating or selling your home, you might begin the process of becoming more eco-friendly with small but significant changes. Consider investing in reusable bags for groceries and errands. For pennies, you will notice that you no longer have cupboards full of unused paper and plastic bags. At Ikea you can purchase reusable, washable, lightweight yet strong bags for around $.99 apiece. And do not forget to wash out glass jars to store dried foods like rice, or for craft projects like those on Felt Magnet.

Light bulbs

This is something you can do whether you rent or own. Convert all your light fixture bulbs to LEDs. Not only are they a healthier, greener choice but at the end of the bulb’s life expectancy, you will have saved money. LEDs might be a little more expensive than incandescent or fluorescent bulbs but are 60-75% more efficient and since LEDs last for 25 years it is easy to see their value. LEDs remain cool even when left on for long periods of time and contain no mercury, so disposal is simple and safe.

Paint

Painting a room in your home should not create a health risk so make sure to use paints that contain no volatile organic compounds known as VOCs. VOCs have been proven to contribute to headaches, nausea, eye irritation, and even kidney problems. If you live in an older building make sure you sample test walls, baseboards, and painted window sills for lead, a dangerous heavy metal that has been positively linked to severe learning disabilities in children and can be fatal to pets. Swab tests are available at places like Grainger or any big box store.

Flooring and textiles

Flooring in your eco-friendly home should be manufactured from sustainable, natural materials like wood, cork, or bamboo. For a durable floor try natural-based linoleum; it is bio-based, durable, anti-microbial, and easy to maintain.

When you replace flooring check the manufacturer’s labels to make sure you are installing a floor that meets indoor air quality standards. Choose natural, sustainable textiles like hemp, jute, cotton, wool, linen, or silk to leave a smaller carbon footprint from manufacturing to disposal. A great benefit of natural fibers is that they release no synthetic polymers into the environment.

Greener cleaners

The types of cleaning products you use can make a big difference to our planet. Green cleaning products are available almost anywhere. There is no need to use toxic and potentially deadly chemicals to clean your home. The Good Trade carries a wide variety of brands of natural cleaners from Caldera to Mrs. Meyers. If you want to make your own green cleaners check out sites like Small Footprint Family or Real Simple.

Real green

One of the best ways to create an eco-friendlier home is to bring plants into the house. After an initial study by NASA in 1983, it was determined that having green plants in your home can reduce the number of chemicals like benzene, formaldehyde, and ammonia in the air you breathe. These chemicals are frequently found in building materials and can last for years. Add a few plants to increase the quality of the air and enjoy the beauty of greenery throughout your home.

It is important for you and your family to begin creating a more eco-friendly home. For your health and the health of our planet.

Bonus Tip: If you’re renting a home, perhaps by taking a virtual apartment tour during the global pandemic, you might want to put together a list of questions for your real estate agent about the eco-friendly options at your future home!

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About the Author

Luke Fitzpatrick has been published in Forbes, Yahoo News, and Influencive. He is also a guest lecturer at the University of Sydney, lecturing in Cross-Cultural Management and the Pre-MBA Program. You can connect with him on LinkedIn.



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