A green lifestyle is much more than recycling. It’s about living in a way that respects the environment and that aims to preserve the planet for future generations. By minimizing the damage we do to the environment, we end up being healthier, happier and we get to save money through lower expenses, including taxes.
1. Benefits Of Going Green
Besides the obvious benefit of preserving the only planet we’ve got, going green has many other benefits.
Reduced electricity bill
Reduced energy consumption can help lower your Ohio Edison electricity bill. The US Environmental Protection Agency reported you can save 20% on your electricity bill by making energy-efficient changes. It is easier than ever to make these changes, starting with simply changing a lightbulb to take advantage of energy-efficient alternatives such as provided by LED technology.
Reduced water bill
You could also save several hundreds of dollars by investing in water-saving appliances and efficient plumbing systems. One example is by using a low-flow sprinkler that will help your grass grow without over flooding it, while saving you money from your water bill.
A more durable and valuable home
Although the initial price of eco-friendly products might be expensive, they will pay for themselves in the long-run. Besides a lower energy bill, these products are more durable and therefore, have a lower cost of maintenance and will take much longer before needing to be replaced. Eco-friendly changes automatically increase the value of your home to any prospective buyer as everyone knows the beneficial impact of these changes and the difference that they make.
Many studies have shown that a variety of harmful chemicals are found in all kinds of products. Many of these chemicals are bad for our health and can contribute to life-threatening diseases such as cancer. Therefore, perhaps the biggest advantage of going green is improving and protecting our health. Even your skin will be healthier and more radiant as toxic products actually hamper it from regenerating and working its job properly. Also, less chemicals in products means less toxins in the air and the air we breathe is one of the most important factors of life so you want to breathe clear air.
By installing solar panels, you will be less dependent on your electricity provider and therefore, protected against yearly increases in electricity prices. If you make your own laundry detergent with a ton of DIY recipes online, you will save money and never risk of running out of your favorite brand. Eco living is independent living.
2. Going Green and Your Taxes
Becoming less taxing on the environment can help you ease your tax burden. Here is how you can benefit from tax credits and incentives.
Renewable home incentives
This incentive covers 30% of the cost of solar electric and solar water heating systems, but not those for swimming pools or hot tubs, small wind-energy properties and geothermal heat pumps. It applies to any owned home, so it does not have to be a primary residence like in some cases. But, the credit is being reduced since 2019 until it expires at the end of this year.
Fuel your savings
Certain fuel cell motor vehicles could qualify for the Alternative Motor Vehicle Tax Credit, but many of the credits have been reduced or phased out. You can only claim this credit if the car was purchased before 2017, you are its original owner and you are driving it primarily in the U.S.
From old clothes to electronics, if you donate to a qualifying non profit, you can write off the donation for the amount of its fair market value. Just remember to get the receipt.
Energy Star program
Although not all Energy Star-qualified products are eligible for incentives, and some tax breaks for energy efficiency expired in 2011, credits are still available through 2021 for some energy programs.
3. Green Lifestyle Tips
What’s important to remember is that every step, either large or small, counts. Below are a few easy ways to make your lifestyle greener and save money along the way.
Begin with installing LED lightbulbs. To take a step further, make sure your home is insulated properly to avoid any heat waste. Last but not least, become an aware energy user by turning off lights when you leave the room, washing clothes at lower temperatures when possible and covering pans while cooking to reduce the amount of heat that escapes and reduce the cooking time.
Fix any leaks. Reduce your shower time or at least install a low-flow shower head. Boil only as much water as your tea or coffee cup requires.
Don’t use bottled water nor plastic bags and you will significantly contribute to reducing waste.
Share, borrow and buy used goods
Second-hand shops can be a great deal of fun. There is even an online marketplace called Vestiare Collective for pre-owned luxury goods at 30 to 70% off original retail price. Buying used books or borrowing books, CDs and DVDs gives you the same end result while giving the planet a helping hand.
TakeawayMaking the shift towards an environmentally friendly lifestyle can help improve your health and life overall, while also being a major boost to the world around you. Ditching unnecessary chemicals, unhealthy foods, unfriendly Earth practices, and bad habits/routines can all add together to make an altogether healthier and happier you, while boosting the environment and reducing your taxes. In short, going green positively affects every bit of your life and your personality.