How to make your home eco-friendly

Whether you are caught up in the greening trend or simply want to cut waste, it is easy to make your home greener and more eco-friendly.

With rising electricity and water costs across Australia, being eco-friendly can help save you money as well as help the environment. Here are some tips for bringing the green out in your home.
1. Green furniture
There are a growing number of designers that are using sustainable furnishings, but if you don’t want to break the bank, then look for older ‘statement’ products to recycle.
Antique stores are a good place to look, even if you just want to get some ideas about prices before you step into the crazy-priced world of modern design stores.
You don’t have to aim big either. Antique dinner sets can add an element of class to a home and leave you safe in the knowledge that you didn’t go out and buy new. There are many smaller home wares that are environmentally friendly alternatives to everyday items, such as non-toxic coat hangers.
2. Herb garden
Anyone who follows television chefs is accustomed to them ducking out the back and grabbing a bit of their own veg for the show. Herb gardens can be small enough to have inside, or large enough to become a serious hobby.
They look good and are great for flavouring dishes. Plus anyone that has bought several herbs to put into a recipe knows that the costs of buying individual herbs adds up.
Start with herbs and then graduate to your own vegetable patch where you can feed your family healthy veg with full knowledge of how it was prepared and what chemicals were used.
3. Research your cleaning aids
It is easy to find ways to clean the house without having to resort to unfriendly chemicals. Most environmental websites will have a list and, chances are, there are some old school alternatives listed that do the same job for less environmental impacts.
4. Grocery bags
Yes it takes a bit of prior planning but taking your own shopping bags is still an awesome alternative to plastic supermarket bags. With some areas charging now for plastic bags, buying your own is a reasonable option. But make sure you check what they are made of or you could defeat the purpose that you are trying to achieve. Environmentally friendly grocery bags are a great alternative. When in double just keep them in a bag in the car boot.
5. Buy less
There is a litany of information dedicated to how much people in the western world waste in terms of food thrown out after each meal. Try to keep track of what you are doing each week and buy accordingly.
You can save a lot of money doing this, particularly if you stop buying lunches at work and start bringing in left-over food from the night before.