We know that it can be a challenge to stay on top of your day-to-day responsibilities, let alone your energy usage and waste. It might interest you to know, however, that many of the changes you can make in your home are quick and simple. Even the ones that require a little more elbow grease can bring their own rewards, like a welcoming garden sanctuary or fresh herbs for cooking.
In the spirit of plastic-free July, we’re going to be walking you through some solid sustainability practices to bring a breath of fresh air to your Dandara home.
Did you know that we generate over 5 million tonnes of plastic waste every year? Single-use plastics are some of the largest pollutants on our planet, and that’s down to our consumption habits.
While we’ll be focusing on design and home solutions for the rest of this blog, managing your plastic consumption can be done very easily at home. Trade your bottled water for a filter, don’t buy single-use straws, take a reusable bag with your shopping, and separate your waste properly. Plastic is easily recyclable, but most types take up to 500 years to decompose.
If we separated it by household, the UK's food waste would rack up to £250-£400 of food each year! You might not personally waste that much, but watching how much food you throw away can be a great money-saver in the long run, letting you cut back on that hidden yearly bill.
We understand, however, that with life’s other stresses, using everything in a kitchen before its date can be a difficult task. But you don’t have to just throw things away; a modern compost bin is designed to be convenient and odour-free, letting you repurpose scraps into feel-good food for your garden.
With that compost, you can set up a hygge herb paradise on your windowsill and add a splash of green to your interiors. Alternatively, gardening doesn’t just give you delicious fresh fruit and veg to enjoy: it can also be a great boon to your mental and physical health!
Energy waste can sometimes be a little harder to keep track of. While we build each of our homes with A rated energy-efficient appliances (where supplied), there are some smaller fuel-draining snags to keep in mind.
Coffee pod makers are a huge contributor to landfill waste, so swapping your daily espresso out for an aromatic drip-feed might be something to consider. You may have also heard that toasters are a drain on your energy savings, but this is actually a myth; if you’re just toasting two slices in the morning, a toaster is more efficient than your oven by far.
While it can be intimidating to start, we recommend applying a can-do DIY attitude to your life at home. You’d be surprised how much you can create by saving your old furniture from the landfill.
Welcome to the world of upcycling. While the allure of stylish new furniture is appealing, we’re always delighted to see our homeowners repurpose the materials around them to save on money and waste. If you’d like to see some stellar examples, we’d recommend minimalist designer Holly Mabbs on Instagram.
Another way to save on both plastic and change is to create your own cleaning products. An all-purpose cleaner can be made from a basic mixture of white vinegar, water, and lemon rind. What’s more, you can incorporate the scents most dear to you, rather than relying on factory-made tastes to add zest to your spring clean.
For other areas of the home,goodhousekeeping.com has a stellar list of recipes.
We understand the temptation to sculpt your garden into a high-fashion masterpiece or to keep a neat and tidy lawn. However, you can be a great help to your local wildlife population by letting things get a little untamed.
For example, you can let portions (or all!) of your lawn grow, dappling your garden with beautiful daisies and making all sorts of wildlife very happy. You could also set up a bug-friendly hotel, hang up bird-feeders, or grow a lovely flowerbed for our pollinating friends.
You can find the National Trust’s full list of recommendations here.
Our developments let you enjoy the natural world, whether you’re tucked into the sweeping Chiltern countryside or the quaint greenery of the UK’s cosiest villages, we have plenty of options for country living. Explore them here: Dandara Locations.