With climate change making its way into headlines nearly every day, you might be wondering what you can do to help the environment. You’re ready to do your part. The only thing holding you back is the potential cost of going green. You’ve heard that energy efficient upgrades and eco-friendly habits can cost a lot of money!

If you’re worried about how a sustainable lifestyle may affect the green in your bank account, take a deep breath. There are easy and affordable ways to improve your relationship with Mother Earth. In fact, some of the tips below are completely free!

Reduce your garbage production

The promise of zero waste living refers to a lifestyle that doesn’t produce a single item that goes into a landfill. If your garbage can is overflowing, a total switch from wasteful consumerism to purposeful recycling can be daunting. It may seem impossible.

If you’re overwhelmed by the idea of a zero waste lifestyle, the trick is to not think of this next goal as an all-or-nothing endeavour. You don’t have to reduce your garbage down to nothing to see the benefits of living with less waste. Even reducing how much waste you produce by a tiny bit will come with environmental and cash savings.

Like dipping your toe into a cold pool, small eco-friendly changes can help you get used to a life where you don’t throw stuff out. Some simple baby steps include:

  • Reusing old t-shirts as shopping bags
  • Repurposing old flannel sheets as cleaning rags
  • Making your own cleaning solutions
  • Shopping from bulk food stores and using reusable containers

Once you get used to these habits, you can introduce more waste-free acts into your routine until — maybe one day — you hit the goal of absolute zero waste!

Reduce your energy consumption

It takes a lot of energy to run a household. From all that hot water in your extra long showers to all the electricity powering your furnace in the winter, your home is constantly using energy. Sometimes, it’s not in sustainable ways.

If you’re looking to reduce your energy consumption, something as simple as turning your lights off when you leave a room can help shrink your carbon footprint while saving you cash. Other super simple ideas include:

  • Using cold water when washing your laundry
  • Turning the tap off when brushing your teeth
  • Limiting your showers to less than 10 minutes
  • Waiting until the dishwasher is full before you turn it on

These are small yet impactful habits that can help you recognize just how much energy you use in a typical day. But if you want to take a bigger chunk out of your energy bills, you’ll want to find other lifestyle habits you can adopt to reduce how much energy you use in your home.

The folks at MoneyKey have a longer list of simple tasks you can take on to lower your consumption and your bills. You can drop in on their blog to find out how to save on your utility bills when you’re ready to take on new energy-efficient challenges. There you’ll find a variety of tips for every skill level, including simple tricks like adjusting your thermostat or more elaborate changes like upgrading to energy efficient windows.

Online lenders recommend borrowers try out these money-saving tips when they’re running low on savings. By reducing what you pay for your utilities, you could save enough to create an emergency fund. This fund can help you take on unexpected bills or repairs without the need for an online installment loan. An online loan is only a great backup in case you don’t have enough savings to cover sudden bill surges or urgent household repairs.

Don’t listen to Kermit the Frog; it’s easy being green. Committing to a sustainable lifestyle doesn’t have to come with big bills or expensive investments. By changing the little ways you buy and use your stuff, you can reduce how much energy your household consumes every day. Once you get used to making saving energy and reducing waste your priorities, it’ll be easier to take on even more eco-friendly habits that can help you save more.