Today we’re talking about how to Live Simply in the area of our homes. Not cleaning them (that’s next week), but the actual structure.
In my fantasy world, I would live in a yurt with a composting toilet, completely off the grid with wind turbines and solar panels. Oh, and lots of room for a huge garden, chickens, and maybe a goat or two. In reality, we are upside down on our mortgage (thanks, economy) and will probably be in our 3 bedrm 2 bath ranch with a very shady yard forever. I’m not complaining, just sharing that I don’t live in a super green house.
If you’re looking to buy a house, there are plenty of resources to help you find green options, some cooler than others, depending on how much you can talk your spouse into. You could even look into cohousing options. When we were looking for houses, DH was adamant that we have an extra garage for his Corvette and motorcycles. Now it’s a storage room for brewing equipment, but I digress.
So if you find yourself in a regular old house, what can you do to simplify and be green?
We are taking baby steps. We replaced all the carpet in our house with a composite material that looks like wood. We couldn’t afford reclaimed lumber but that would have been another cool choice. It has really cut down on the amount of cleaning we have to do – with two dogs and two cats, it’s so much easier to sweep up the hair than try to vaccum and shampoo carpets. We I am trying to declutter and get rid of things that I don’t love. We don’t have central air, just an energy efficient window unit for the bedroom. We also have our thermostat on a timer so it’s a little colder when we leave for the day or are sleeping, saving money and energy.
Additionally, we’re saving up for additional insulation and would like to replace our front window, which lets in a lot of heat.
DH so far has nixed composting and rain barrels but we’ll see . . .
Green America has a handy little Efficiency Poster with tips for saving energy in your home.
What ways have you found to save energy in your home?
This post also shared at Simple Lives Thursday