Living eco is a great thing to do for our planet and all its inhabitants. More than this, however, it can also be directly beneficial to you as an individual in a range of different ways. One way in which living eco will directly benefit you is that it will help you save money.
Living in a sustainable and eco-friendly way means reducing the overall amount that you buy, and finding ways to boost your personal self-reliance and resilience.
The less you have to rely on outside resources, the more money you can save.
Choosing to live in a more sustainable and ethical way might not remove your money worries overnight. But it can certainly make it a lot easier to live more frugally and save money over time. In this article, we'll look at eco living practices that will save you money on your grocery bill, on growing your own, on your utility bills, on your transportation/ commuting costs, and on the clothes and household items you need.
You Can Save Money on Your Grocery Bill By:
- Growing at least some of your own food.
- Preserving food (through canning, dehydration, freezing etc..).
- Making full use of leftovers.
- Making food go further by clever home cooking. Cooking fresh, wholesome produce from scratch won't just be an eco-friendly choice. Avoiding overly packaged and processed 'junk' foods will save you money too.
- Buying less but buying better (at farm shops/ farmer's markets or through CSA schemes, for example). Individual sustainable, organic items can be more expensive than food bought in a supermarket, but you can use all of each item (peels, stalks and all).
You Can Reduce The Cost of Growing Your Own By:
- Saving seeds from organic produce you buy.
- Regrowing vegetables from scraps.
- Swapping seeds/ seedlings/ plants with friends or neighbors or others in your community.
- Reusing materials, food packaging, toilet roll tubes etc for seed sowing and as pots and containers.
- Making use of natural resources in your environment. (Using branches and other organic materials to make new growing areas, or liquid plant feeds, for example.)
- Composting food scraps to recycle nutrients and maintain fertility in your garden and reduce waste.
You Can Reduce Your Utility Bills By:
- Reducing your energy use with a series of small steps, such as switching off lights and appliances when not in use, choosing efficient appliances, adding curtains/ blinds/ insulation etc to reduce heating and cooling costs, etc..
- Installing solar panels or other means of renewable energy generation for your home.
- Making use of renewable energy in other ways. (For example, by using solar energy for water heating, solar cooking or dehydration.)
- Harvesting rainwater to reduce mains water use.
- Using water wisely and well around your home and garden. (By taking small steps such as installing drip irrigation and adding mulches in your garden, showering, washing clothes and flushing less, and switching off taps while brushing or shaving, for example.)
You Can Save Money on Transportation/ Commuting By:
- Cycling or walking wherever possible rather than taking your car.
- Car pooling or ride sharing.
- Working from home if possible, or discussing other more flexible working options.
- Enjoying 'staycations' and enjoying travel destinations close to home.
You Can Save Money on Clothing and Items for Your Home By:
- Making sure you use items you already own for as long as possible.
- Choosing second-hand/ pre-loved items rather than buying new.
- Taking on a range of upcycling and DIY/ crafting projects to clothe yourself and your family and fit out and furnish your home.
These are just a few examples of the ways living eco will help you save money. The more you continue on down the path of sustainability, the more potential ways to save you will find.