As we all grow increasingly concerned about the environmental impact we are having on Mother Earth, we look for sustainable ways to keep life as we know it going.
However, you’ll quickly find that many eco-friendly name brands come with a high price tag. Being environmentally conscious can easily seem like a luxury available to the privileged.
We all want to do the right thing, but we also need to look after our wallets, which is why here we will explore a few money saving hacks that will save you some pennies while reducing your carbon footprint.
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Money Saving Hacks for Electricity Costs
While remembering to turn off the lights or unplug unused appliances may seem like an obvious solution, few of us actually do it. However, those little habits can quickly reduce your monthly electric bill while helping the planet.
If you have trouble remembering to hit those switches before walking out, speak to your provider and ask if there is a different plan you can move onto for limited energy usage.
Investing in energy-saving light-bulbs is also a great way to make an impact. These make a dramatic difference in the amount of electricity you need to power the bulb, and also tend to last longer.
Take a Stroll
Not only is walking good for you, but it saves your cash and puts less strain on the environment.
In fact, every 3 miles you choose to walk instead of drive you are preventing 2 kilograms of carbon emissions.
If you don’t live in a pedestrian-friendly area, you can always choose a ride-sharing or carpool service that can also help you save money.
Pack It In
Convenience is almost priceless, but we don’t realize just how much it is actually costing us. Instead of grabbing a ‘coffee to go’, invest in a good quality travel mug that offers a decent insulation, and fill it with your own homemade brew.
While you’re at it, pack your own lunch for the day – not only is it a much healthier option but you are saving on needless spending.
Cut down on food waste. Buy only what you need for the week and be aware of over catering, unless you are planning on having leftovers for the next evening’s dinner.
You’ll also be decreasing the amount of styrofoam and plastic to-go containers being used.
Sign Up For Cashback
It may sound like more effort than it is worth, this is one area that adds up quickly.
Many credit cards now offer different cashback schemes, it is well worth your time to look a little deeper into which option suits you best. The extra money can help you make more environmentally friendly purchases in the future.
To Gym, Or Not To Gym
Gym memberships can often be totally overrated and therefore a huge waste of your money. Examine your schedule – it may be worthwhile to pay your own way class by class instead of spending a huge amount on a membership that you rarely use.
If you are really strapped, consider other forms of free exercise like joining a running club or finding another outdoor leisure activity that you really enjoy.
Goodbye Brand Names
One of the biggest needless expenses is brand names. This can run from food to shoes, to clothing… absolutely everything has different versions of the same product with different labeling on it.
When you do your grocery shopping, choose the home brands. They are the most economical but also provide decent quality. There is no reason to pay more for dried pasta just because it has a well-known label on it. Think about supporting your local farmers and try to source food made within your vicinity – this goes a long way in helping the local (your) economy.
The same goes for clothing. Do you really need a fancy t-shirt when a more simple one will do? There are so many options, be careful not to become a slave to branding and a good marketing campaign.
The same goes for makeup and self-care products. You can often end up with a higher quality DIY lotion then what you would find in the store, so feel free to make your own!
How many pieces of mail come from the bank, telephone companies, and stores just to be tossed in the trash?
Take some extra time out of your day to log into accounts and opt to be notified in paper-free ways. Companies will send emails and texts to notify you about any account changes instead.
Be Aware of Your Debt
Really examine your debt and what you are paying in interest every month. A good way to get rid of it is to go without some of the ‘luxuries’ for a month or two and pump the money you are saving into clearing your debt.
Once you have done this, it may be a good idea to create a budget. Think about your expenditure and your income, and plot a way to make the most use out of your incoming cash but with a plan to still save a little bit, for a ‘rainy day’ pot. Stay away from running into credit card debt, as this is one of the most expensive forms of debt to have.
Keep in mind which eco-friendly products can’t be made or purchased everywhere, and build your budget in a way that accommodates these changes.
Habits Can Cost Too
Be aware that habits can be an easy way to spend your cash. If it’s your habit to grab a chocolate every time you head into a shop, change it! Just be aware of what you spend and remember every little cent counts.
At the end of the day, these money saving hacks will make a difference. With a little bit of research, you should find more ingenious ways to save some cash while making our planet a little healthier and happier.
Check out our blog for more tips and advice on how to help you get there.