Green property management? The answer is yes! As the world turns to more and more sustainable ways of living and functioning now is a perfect time to just on the Green train. There are more resources than you may think the next time that you are looking for a place to live and want to commit to living green in every way. Follow this simple list of important clues as to how you can maximize your renting experience in the Eco world.
Property Management/Landlord Green Credentials
There are a number of landlords and property management companies that have gone the extra mile and gotten a certification into the green world. The National Apartment Association Education Institute offers a Credential for Green Property Management. The program was designed to educate and implement more sustainable practices within the renting world.
Although many people will turn to the fortune and fate of Craigslist (and this is a fabulous site if you don’t have such specific expectations) on GreenRenter.com you can find a home or apartment that is truly green and that you can feel good about. It offers both residential and commercial rental listings in the US and Canada. Although the cities offered in the US only add up to 8, they are large enough to get a giant ball rolling that may forever change the way our nation rents property.
Generally, people think of burning wood as the villain of the renewable energy family. Although it is a renewable resource, it causes environmentalists to shake their heads. Mostly they worry that burning wood means cutting down precious trees for fuel and smoke pollution. Not to mention that wood stoves are not as technologically sexy as glittering solar panels and whirling wind turbines.
As much as some hate the burning of wood as an energy source, wood is a conditionally renewable fuel, period. And as all environmentalists and alternative energy aficionados know, there aren’t too many renewable options available–especially ones that aide in large amounts for the cold weather months. For some, relying on wood burning fuel as a source for heat is a must for survival.
There are many of us that would rather use wood burning heaters rather than electrical or gas heaters. For those select few, do your part for sustainability by purchasing wood that comes from a sustainable source. Firewood should be cut, split and stacked in an open area in early spring to be ready to burn in the fall. Very hard woods like oak may take longer to dry–especially in damp maritime climates. When it comes to burning other elements besides wood–steer clear. Burning waste paper and trash produces elevated emissions of toxic gasses. Burn clean, dry, uncoated, untreated wood and just enough newspaper to light the fires.
Another tip for burning wood users: the not so beautiful wood piles that include wood from less desirable species tend to be more sustainable than perfect piles of maple or oak with regular pieces in the classic wedge shape. This is because straight lengths of these high value, slow growing species should be used for furniture, not wood heating. Ugly wood piles are created from a milieu of woods.
The bottom line on the argument of whether or not to burn wood is the cold hard facts. Wood is considered to be a renewable fuel and almost carbon dioxide neutral with the help of trees absorbing CO2. When trees mature and fall in the forest and decompose there, the same amount of CO2 is emitted as would be released if they were burned. When we heat our houses by burning wood, we are flowing along with the natural carbon cycle in which CO2 flows from the atmosphere to the forest and back.
Finding green solutions in every situation can be hard, but for moving your community can make it easy if you know where to look and know what to do. Follow these guidelines for moving responsibly for the new tenant in your old place, for your community and most importantly for your environment.
Sorting through your things can be liberating but more importantly, it gives you a chance to give your unwanted items and become a treasure for another needy individual. Check out your local charity or donation centers.
Electronic Recycling, or eCycling, is a wonderful and easy chance at moving green. According to the EPA, over 100 million pounds are recovered and reused every year from eCycling. Doing this reduces the manufacturer’s needs for making new parts and products. For more information on eCycling, visit their site.
Once you are moved out, cleaning out the nooks and crannies can be annoying, but just knowing that doing it responsibly can be rewarding enough in itself. Using homemade vinegar based products and solutions can provide you with incredible cleaning power and is safe for the homeowner. Also, mixing in Grapefruit Seed Extract can help in making a solution even stronger.
Your moving company is prohibited by law from shipping hazardous materials such as paint, drain cleaner, batteries, antifreeze, gasoline, motor oil, pool chemicals, rodent spray, etc., so you will need to dispose of these materials in a safe manner. Call the local collection facility to find out what the requirements are for proper disposal.
Finally, if cleaning your house after a long moving day doesn’t sound that fun, you can always hire a green cleaning service to give your house a final cleaning. There are plenty of green cleaning services there to be of service.
The green scene is kicking into full gear and as we enter 2010 we vow to do our job to help our beautiful planet by going a little green ourselves. We used to be greener when we ran biodiesel and veggie oil in trucks, but that actually is not working out so well mechanically, so we’ve backed off of that. BUT – we do use plastic totes for office moves, we re-use boxes for just about every move and we use what are called “speed packs” over and over. These are large boxes on wheels that we can put lots of things into and wheel them rather than carry them. Of course this works best on office moves, however not so good on residential moves.
We pick up boxes and you better believe we use them time and time again! Hopefully, if we are all making moves that are more environmentally friendly we will see a positive effect on mother earth!
During the Holiday season, your busy schedules probably just got slammed with a number of dinner parties to attend. Attending dinner parties are fun but hosting dinner parties can be fun too! Whether you are having a small get together or many people over for a green celebration, planning does not have to be stressful hopefully this article will ease your list of things to do.
So you’ve decided you’re going to have a dinner party. Next step is figuring out how you’re going to send your invitations. To go green and ease the carbon footprint on getting your attendees attention to save the date, may we suggest using social media? What a quick and easy way to contact your network of friends. Remember, just because its online doesn’t mean you can’t get creative. Send your invites a jazzed up email, they will be excited to open it making them even more excited to attend, we like to use Evite.com. Another idea is to suggest a prize for those who arrive by alternative forms of transportation other than by car, but whatever the prize is, make it green and make it good. When you decorate for your party create displays of fresh flowers and candles and get creative with the seasons offerings. Pinecones, lemons, leaves, and oranges are all things found in or around your house that can add to the fall season and add to the mood of a comfortable environment. Don’t forget to invest in some ‘green wine’ no, the color of the wine is not green but you can compliment any dish by supporting an ecologically sensitive winery. Or, you can have green drinks by supporting a local micro brewery, such as New Belgium Brewery, O’Dell’s Brewery and Fort Collins Brewery. When shopping for your dinner party, don’t forget about the after dinner coffee which you can go green by supporting fair trade. If there are leftovers, send everyone home with whatever is left, or compost your scraps for your garden. You should always seek out green household cleaning products because they are good for your health and good for the environment too.
As you can see these are quick easy steps to plan for your green Holiday celebration. All of these things are easy on your wallet; health and the environment too, have fun and stay green this holiday season.