If you are living in an apartment, let me first begin by saying that you are already on the winning side of being green. As populations grow, as well as our appetites for large homes, those who opt for smaller dwellings are reducing their footprints in a number of ways. All of this is a good thing, but when it comes to living green, renters often find themselves at a disadvantage to homeowners when it comes to choice and versatility with regard to green solutions; you simply cannot rip out the plumbing or attach your own solar array to the roof. So what can you do? Let’s look at a few ideas for increasing your green cred while operating under a lease.
1) Use Windows to Your Advantage
During winter months, you can opt to leave blinds open during the day to use the sun to heat your apartment, and during the summer, close the blinds when you’re not at home to reduce your AC usage.
2) Utilize Tower Fans
This can reduce your need for AC during the summer, and if you have ceiling fans, turn them on in reverse during the winter to make better use of the heat that settles along your ceiling.
3) Make Use of Mirrors
During the day, strategically placed wall mirrors (and desktop accent mirrors) can help to drastically brighten your room, and at night they can amplify the effect of existing light fittings, allowing you to use fewer lights all around.
While many apartments offer recycling, some do not. Even if your complex does have a program, not all are very user friendly. If recycling is not a viable option through your apartment, find your nearest recycling center and rock your green streak!
5) Go Solar
While you technically can’t set up your own rooftop solar system in your apartment, you can look for apartment complexes powered by solar energy. You can also take advantage of your window space in order to charge devices with suction cup enabled solar chargers like the XDModo, or even a quick charge portable array wedged between the blinds and the window.
6) Use Green Technology
Many apartments will replace smoke detector batteries, light bulbs, and air filters for you, which is a great cost saving service, but typically what they have to offer isn’t the least bit green. Next time, opt to purchase rechargeable batteries, LED bulbs, and washable air filters in order to give your apartment a lasting green touch!
While the constraints of apartment living can lead to green frustrations, the thing to keep in mind is that you are one less family that’s consuming more than they need. Take advantage of your already green living arrangement by tweaking what you can, and enjoying the fruits of your Earth friendly decision.