Ten Sustainability Tips for Homebuilders and Their Home Users
With the rise in the cost of living and soaring energy prices, sustainable practices have never proven more beneficial than they are today, not only for the environment, but also to the individual, to businesses and to industry in general.
At Classic Folios, we have long been the providers of advice on sustainability for new homeowners, with our Sustainability and Community Guides. Through these, we recommend sustainable practices that can easily be put in place to help reduce costs and the carbon footprint of households. But many of these can also be applied to businesses.
Over the years, we have become familiar with the most readily implemented and quickest changes we can make to our daily habits, to make a difference and do our bit for the environment. For this reason, we have now compiled a list of ten sustainability tips that can be easily implemented both in the home for your buyers, but also for you at work, to lighten the carbon load while saving money wherever possible.
1. Reduce Individual Car Journeys
Road transport is responsible for roughly a fifth of the UK’s greenhouse gas emissions. Using public transport whenever you can, will make a huge difference to your carbon footprint.
Cycling is also a carbon-free alternative to driving or using public transport, and has health as well as environmental benefits.
Car sharing is another alternative to journeys that can’t be travelled by bus, and groups of car share journeys can be found online.
2. Use Local Amenities
Using the amenities that we have on our doorstep not only supports our local community, it also means less travel, which leads to a reduction in carbon emissions. Shopping locally, buying local produce or even signing up to your nearest library, all help our communities to flourish. The handover packages we provide for our customers detail the local amenities for homebuyers and home users, encouraging them to make this change. Our online portal, Spaciable, and our emerging Spaciable Living app, also provide all the information home users need to find and use their local amenities effectively.
3. Organise a Litter Picking Group
Whether amongst friends, neighbours, or colleagues, organising and implementing a group litter pick can be hugely beneficial to your chosen area, and has also been found to improve mental health. You can find advice on how to organise a group litter pick here . One feature of Spaciable Living is that it includes a chat feature for neighbours. This allows your home users to post news and updates to their neighbours, as well as create groups – and would be a great way to organise a litter picking group!
4. Eat Less Meat and Dairy
Across the globe, the production of meat-based products contributes 15% of greenhouse gas emissions. 30% of the earth’s habitable land, and 36% of the world’s crops are used in farming and feeding livestock. If we change our eating habits to include less meat, we can help reduce our overall dependence on animal-based products.
5. Make Your Own Compost
Even if you’ve cut down on your food waste, there are certain parts of food that can’t be eaten. Banana skins, vegetable peelings, stems and leaves can all end up in the bin. However, buying or creating a compost bin, whether at home or at your place of work, will mean a greater reduction in food waste and a useful supply of compost whenever you should need it. You can encourage your homebuyers to compost with information on how to do so given at handover, or even giving them a starter kit as welcome gift!
6. Switch Off Your Electrical Appliances
Turning off lights when we leave the room is second nature at home, but don’t forget that both at work and at home, all electrics should be turned off when not in use, or at the end of the working day. So, get in the habit of turning off electrical sockets whenever they are not in use – this includes office computers, chargers, televisions and lights!
7. Turn Off the Taps
Reducing water usage is great for the planet and can also help to save money on water bills. Turning off your taps so that they don’t run unused, for instance while washing your hands, brushing your teeth or showering, can vastly reduce you water usage.
8. Check Your Fridge is Set to the Right Temperature
Ensure food lasts longer and reduce your food waste by making sure your fridge is set to the right temperature. Use a fridge thermometer to check the temperature of your fridge and aim for just under 5℃. Supply user manuals for installed appliances for your buyers and home users, so that they know how to alter the temperature of their fridge and keep it running to maximum efficiency. Alternatively, we offer QR code stickers that you can stick onto appliances, linking to a digital copy of their appliance manual.
9. Switch to an Eco-friendly Washing Up Liquid/Detergent
Household items, such as washing up liquid and detergents, can harm aquatic life when they travel into our waterways. Use a washing up liquid or detergent that is eco-friendly and less harmful to the environment. We offer a selection of Eco Lifestyle Welcome Gifts. These gifts are all eco-friendly alternatives to everyday items used in the home, and are a great way to set your buyers off on a path of green behaviours in their new home.
10. Collect Rainwater
Water butts collect rainwater that can then be used to water plants or wash the car. Again, offering these to your buyers will ensure them of your commitment to sustainability and will help them with water bills once they are living in one of your homes. Any additions to homes that you can make to help with the living costs for your buyers will go a long way to assure them that you aren’t just selling houses, you are helping create better lifestyles for the people who move into your homes.
For more information on the Sustainability and Community Guides that we provide, or the selection of Eco Lifestyle Welcome Gifts we supply, please get in touch.