Five Home Greening Tips

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    Feb 27, 2014
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Five Home Greening Tips Photo by John Nicholson

Green living is turning out to be the fashion of the decade, and it's a fashion with a difference. Eco friendliness, environmentalism, going green – whatever you want to call it, the call for a more low-carbon, low pollution way of living is one of the most powerful and game-changing aspects of today's debate in the West. And it isn't just one which our culture is having around how best to live our lives in a post-industrial, post-traditional world. Laudable this may be, as the popularity of 'green living' grows, more and more corporate and cultural groups are joining in and pitching their ideas. Lest we be left out, here are a few of ours.

First of all, there is the question of energy use. The wisdom was for many years that we should cut down on the amount we use through using our various appliances less – a 'social revolution'. This perhaps unsurprisingly has failed to happen, and the new consensus is that companies should work to produce less power-hungry appliances. This makes a lot more sense – not only does it rely on the market, which is far more reliable than the desire for sudden flourishes of public goodwill en masse, but it also gives society the potential to actually gain from environmentalism. If we could end up not only with a clean planet, but also some nice new technologies, wouldn't that the nice?

Then there are some nifty government grants that are work looking into. If you are considering a large step, like installing solar panels or underfloor heating, you could be entitled to a significant amount of help from the government in covering costs. Leafing through the Yellow Pages for 'Handyman London' and making a few calls could really pay off. A big advantage of these technologies is often that they pay for themselves over time anyway, so with a head start and an appropriate piece of technology for your home, you could potentially make some great savings both in CO2 and in financial terms.

Air freshness is another thing – instead of the terrible habit many Britons have of simultaneously blasting out heat from radiators and leaving windows open, you might like to consider keeping your temperature at a sensible level and ventilating your home in a way that conserves heat more efficiently. One way to do this could be as simple as to get a few house plants – these are a great way to freshen your air without spending a fortune on heating or air fresheners. That's not to say you should not keep your house ventilated, of course. Balance, as so often, is the key.

Fourth up is the ugly duckling that is a compost bin. This may seem like a bit of a bother, and installing a large bin in your garden might seem daunting. Many councils now pick up compost waste, though, and the difference you can make with this one simple change is really quite astonishing. Not only will your bins fill up far more slowly, but they won't smell either. Many a handyman London or UK wide will be able to install a bin in your garden in half an hour. And your compost will either give the council something that is usable in a green way, or make an excellent fertiliser if you have a back garden with space for a compost installation there.

Fifth and finally, insulation. It's the story that never was, but in 2010 Britain's new government offered full grants to anybody wanting to insulate their homes. This is a great way to bring down your bills, help reduce your carbon footprint and keep your house that bit cosier while you're at it.

Well, even governments have to end up doing something right every now and then.

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Tips and tricks about home improvement by John Nicholson. Find your green refurbishment solutions in here.

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