Saving Money Around the Home and Going Green at the Same Time

Saving money is foremost in everyone’s mind right now and the immediate response is buying less expensive items; however, the smart approach is to purchase products for your home that will save money over time. Though they may cost more money up front, “green” items are often the most cost-effective. Some of the environmentally friendly household items are:

  • Fluorescent light bulbs: These bulbs can last 10 times longer than regular incandescent bulbs, use 75% less power (Source: GE), and are now available in sizes compatible with almost every fixture.
  • Use cloth instead of paper towels: if you wash them often, they are just as sanitary as paper, and more durable!
  • Heating and Air: “As much as half of your energy bill goes to heating and cooling” (source: Energy Star ®) so it is important to make sure your system is running as efficiently as possible with yearly tune-ups and regular air filter replacement.
  • Water Filters: Use a whole house water filter or one that fits onto your faucet to get your purified water instead of buying bottled water.
  • Xeriscaping: This term refers to yards which have mostly native plants and less lawn to mow. By landscaping with native or drought resistant plants, you can save water and money because the plants will need less care. Also, without much of a lawn, but instead, natural forest or shrubbery, you will use less gas and spend less time mowing. You may even be able to eliminate mowing altogether.

In addition to purchases you can make to save money around the home, there’s a lot you can do without spending a penny.

  • Reuse grocery bags: they can be used inside your trashcans instead of garbage bags, you can use them to clean up after dogs on walks, or to wrap paint covered paintbrushes to keep them from drying until you can wash them out.
  • Use your microwave: Many foods you would usually prepare on your stove top or oven can be made just as easily in your microwave. Microwaves use less power and produce less heat than conventional ovens. There are even convection microwaves that can bake cakes and other foods. Microwaves do not cause cancer or suck nutrients from food (Consumerreports.org).
  • Use natural items to decorate your home: You can collect items from your yard such as pine cones, holly, and pine branches to make beautiful centerpieces for your holiday decorations.
  • Lower the temperature on your water heater: Often the heat is set much higher than you will ever need. It’s easy to adjust the heat and turn it down.

Additionally, if you are planning to build a new home, there are builders who are willing to work with you to make your home the right size for you and include all the “green” amenities to save you money in the long run. Builders understand the importance behind the “green revolution” and want to serve environmentally (as well as value) oriented consumers.

Cheap Scented Candles – Great Way to Freshen Your Home and Your Decor

One of the ways that many people have found to add a certain ambiance to their home is through the use of candles. One can find cheap scented candles in a wide variety of stores as well as online. For a small amount of money, these candles can do a lot to changing the atmosphere of one’s home from a cold and hollow place to a home that is fresh and inviting. In addition, because of the addition of fragrance to the candle, they can make your home smell delightful.

There is a wide assortment of cheap scented candles available. They come in a variety of scents, colors and sizes. The choices one makes in the candles they purchase can vary greatly, and many times, it depends on the room in which it will be used. For many people the only types of scented candles that they want in their kitchen are food scents. Whether it is the crisp and tangy scent of lemons or the warm and welcoming scents of baked apple pie, there is a candle with the fragrance. In other rooms such as the den, one may wish to have a warm and earthy smell of pine or natural elements. With scented candles, the combinations are nearly endless.

Many times the scent of a candle will match the color of the candle wax itself, so depending on your décor you may find yourself limited to certain fragrances as the candle wax matches the colors in the room. This may seem like a limiting factor, but in many ways, it is not. There are generally several fragrances for the various colors. This makes it a simple matter of picking from the group available, in the color you wish. This can be a wonderful way to explore various fragrances as well.

Candles have been in use since ancient times. The first recorded use of them is around 200 BC when the people in China used them. The ancient Romans further developed the use of candles by adding a wick to them, which resembles the candles we have now. Their candles did not have much variety in choices, and were used primarily for light and heat. Today our candles are more for decoration and we have a tremendous amount of options we can choose from. This is one reason using cheap scented candles is such an effective way to add some warmth to your home or make a special night even more magical.