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How to Save Money the Environmentally Friendly Way
by Kari Lamanuzzi

While Kermit the Frog is famous for saying "it ain't easy being green," these days it's easier than ever. Plus, because it can save you a ton of money each month, there's never been a better incentive to make your household an environmentally friendly one. Below are some objectives, followed by some hints on how to meet them.

Reduce Household Waste
When you'reduce your household waste, you'reduce the amount of your trash that goes into a landfill. Plus, it'll save you a couple of trips to the dumpster each week. Here's how it:

  • Stop buying bottled water! Even when it's on sale for $4 a case, it costs a lot more than filling up a Brita pitcher. Instead of taking a disposable plastic bottle with you, take a reusable one filled with your Brita water. Wash and repeat.
  • Newspaper has several uses and should never be thrown away. Instead of using paper towels when you Windex your mirrors, use newspaper. It saves on paper and leaves your glass streak and lint free. On second thought, why are you still getting the paper delivered? Cancel your subscription and read your news online. It's cheaper, greener and just as easy.
  • Recycle! Ever see a homeless person going through trash? It's because in many states, you can get cash for old soda and beer cans. How much money is sitting in your garbage can right now? Instead of tossing recyclables in a dumpster, toss them in a separate container and take them to the recycling plant. The same goes for old magazines. If you're willing to spend a few dollars on shipping, instead of recycling old magazines you can send them to soldiers. To find an address, go to www.anysoldier.com. The site will connect you to a solder who will appreciate the new reading material.
  • Don't ever throw away clothes. When you certain trends fall out of style, send them to the local Goodwill store. If they're torn or stained, you can use them as dust rags.
  • Turn off the water when you brush your teeth! It'll cut down your water bill and your carbon footprint. You can also save water by setting your dishwasher and clothes washer on shorter settings, switching to a low-flow toilet and changing your shower-head.
Stop Throwing Away Money on Cleaning Supplies
Why buy different cleaners when in most cases one will do? Here are some natural (and affordable!) items to add to your shopping list:
  • Lemons. They act as a natural deodorizer and can be used in laundry.
  • White vinegar. When boiled with water, it works to deodorize the air. When diluted, it also works as a spot cleaner for carpet and other soft surfaces.
  • Borax. Laundry detergent is bulky, contains a lot of chemicals and can be very expensive. Borax is natural, cheap and it doesn't take much to get your clothes clean.
  • Baking soda. You can brush your teeth with it, scrub counters with it and add it to your laundry to freshen things up. Nature's wonder product, you can do just about anything with it, including put it in the freezer to absorb funky odors.

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