During a recession it helps to look at any means to save money. The more conscious we are of the fact that we throw money down the drain, the more dollars and cents we save in the process. Every bit counts and you'd be surprised at the difference it can make in your weekly budget.
By implementing green tips at the same time you'll not only help your own pocket, but also planet Earth. The following 5 green recessions tips will give you a good head start in becoming more environmentally conscious and money smart.
Just remember, the following tips are barely the tip of the iceberg in regards to ways in which we can look after the planet. By implementing small steps at the time we can all do our bit toward a greener world.
The easiest way to save energy is to buy energy efficient light bulbs for our homes. In summer, turn off your thermostat and use thick curtains to insulate your home rather than switching on the air conditioner. If you need to use the air con, set it to be at 78 degrees Fahrenheit. In winter turn the thermostat down a couple of notches. Here is a list of 101 other ways to save energy at home.
Saving fuel is easier than you think. You can start by reducing the amount of time you just hop into the car to drive around with no particular destination in mind. If you live in a city with a good transport system then you could consider going public and leave your car home. This will help you to save gas and money. Even better would be to walk.
I actually own a scooter. These motorized bikes are highly effective for city traffic as you'll never run out of options to park. Plus they are very cost-effective. I barely spend $2/fuel each week. Plus scooters are fun to boost.
Another option is to carpool with friends from work. By sharing one car between several people you reduce emissions and lower the cost of transport for all involved.
Here is a list of other ways to increase mileage and decrease your fuel costs.
The first step you can do to save water at home is to turn off the tap when you brush your teeth. The same rule applies for when you shower. Turn the water off while you soap your body then turn it back on to rinse. Doing this will save quite a bit of water each time you take a shower.
Faucet aerators are small devices that are attached to your water taps. They cost between $0.50 - $3.00 each and can save you a lot of money by reducing water flow to 2.0, 1.5 or 1.0 gallons per minute at normal pressure rates.
You can also save water by using a bucket to wash your car instead of using a hose.
Here is a great list of 49 other ways that you can save water. I gaurantee you'll learn something if you go through the list.
Shop with intelligence
Smart shopping can also save money and energy. The first step to smart shopping is to always shop with a list. Unless you have a list – and stick to it – you will only end up buying unnecessary things, such as snacks and "spur of the moment" products.
Refuse to buy products with excess packaging. The more we force manufacturers to listen, the sooner they will stop waste - at least we hope so.
Buy organic. Organic products might be more expensive e.g. You won't save money, but you will contribute toward a greener planet.
Use re-usable shopping bags and give plastic a wide berth. Plastic takes around 500 – 1,000 years to decompose naturally! Stop buying and using plastic-packaged products and switch to recycled or re-usable bags and products instead.
Buy second-hand. This doesn't apply for food products, but you will pick up many bargains from garage sales and thrift shops. Granted, buying second hand is not for everyone but judging by the success of garage sales, it is a popular way to save money AND contribute to a greener world. As a matter of fact I just hosted a garage sale a couple of weekends ago and made over $700! within 7 hours - not bad for a days work!
While all the above tips help to save money in some ways, saving money as a primary means can make or break your budget. The fastest way to saving money is to stop spending it. Look at situations in your day-to-day life where you tend to buy impulsively.
It could be when you are feeling down, stressed or pressured. Analyzing those potential money thieves are important if you want to take control of your money. Shopping for happiness doesn't work. In fact, I believe that the best feelings are always experienced BEFORE we buy something. The anticipation of buying a certain product results in a bigger high than actually having it in the end.
If you buy on impulse only to feel rotten right afterward, stop. Just by cutting back on small expenses each week you can save a nice bit of money by the end of the year. When we spend cash we tend to – conveniently – forget about it. A coffee here, a magazine there can add up.