Preservation of the environment is something that we are all responsible for. While recycling is a part of the solution for saving landfill space and reducing greenhouse gas emissions, the best option is to prevent or reduce the amount of waste that is generated in the first place. There are many things homeowners can do to reduce the waste they produce and help to protect the environment. 

Here are a few tips to help you along the road to reducing waste: 

Reduce – Buy less small packages. Although individually wrapped packages and drinks are convenient, they are also wasteful. when you buy in bulk you will save money and you will have less packaging to dispose of. If you really like the idea of individually wrapped servings, you can always use small reusable containers to divide up the bulk product. 

Reuse – You don't have to throw out plastic tubs after you have used their contents, why not use them to store leftovers in. The containers can be used several times and when you do finally have to throw them out, you will know that you are recycling them after you have used them as much as you can. 

Say no to bags – Instead of choosing between plastic or paper bags, don’t use a bag. If you are only buying a few items you may be able to carry them, try putting small items in pockets or purses and if you are getting a lot, take a backpack with you or any other type of reusable bag. There will be no need to recycle bags if you don’t use them in the first place. 

Reusable Containers – Buy reusable containers, such as water bottles and travel mugs. Instead of buying individual bottles of water, which you will end up recycling or coffee cups that get thrown out, buy reusable ones. You can wash them out every day and refill them when you want them. Some stores, will let you bring your own containers to purchase things like fresh peanut butter, honey, olive oil, and flour.

If you are interested in reducing waste but didn’t know where to start. These are just a few ways that you can help to reduce waste in your home and help to reduce your environmental impact.


There are many reasons for downsizing your home, maybe the kids have recently flown the nest, the utility bills are too high, or maybe you just want a home that is easier to maintain.

Whatever your reasons, it can be difficult to decide what type of home you want to move to, especially if your current home has been your family home for many years.

Here are a few tips to help you to narrow the search for your new home, and help you to find the perfect property for your future: 

Think about which rooms you can do without 

Before you begin searching for a smaller home, sit with the family and make a list of what you like and dislike about your current home. Which rooms do you use a lot? Which spaces and pieces of furniture just collect dust? A good rule to use is the 6 times a year rule. Think about each room in your home and if you use them less than 6 times a year, you can probably do without them. 

While you are thinking about your living space, choose which rooms you could use for more than one purpose. If you work at home and require a home office, a good idea is to put a small sofa bed in your office in your new home for when you have guests visiting. If you enjoy hosting dinner parties, why not put a table in the kitchen and create a casual dining space, instead of looking for a formal dining room.

Consider Purchasing Multi-use Furniture 

When you have decided which rooms you can shed without affecting your way of life, consider the furniture you may need. Multi-use pieces like sofa beds, bunkbeds, nests of tables and coffee tables with drawers are saving graces when living in smaller spaces 

If you have large pieces of furniture which are impractical - donate or sell them. If you are moving to a smaller home because your kids have left home, it will not be necessary to have so much furniture. Before you move, tell the kids to take what they want from their old rooms and offer them any furniture which you no longer need.

Once you have decided on the furniture you want to keep, measure all larger pieces and when you are viewing homes take a tape measure with you so you can be sure it will fit into rooms and through the doorways etc.. 

Good Design is Essential 

In a small living space, design is especially important. Look closely at the storage space in any potential new home you look at. There are many older houses that do not have bedroom closets so you will need to bring space saving wardrobes or an extra dresser. 

Don't rule out homes which have less closet space, instead think about the possibility of building shelves and getting under bed storage boxes for seasonal clothes. If you are looking to move into an apartment, ask if there is storage space available to use within the building. It’s important to explore all the options and to keep an open mind before you rule a place out. 

Look at how much light comes into any property you view as light will make any small space look bigger. If there is outdoor living space this adds to a property and gives the feeling of a bigger home. 

Choose an area You Have Always Wanted to Live 

The money you will save when moving from a bigger home, may mean that you are able to move to the area you have always wanted to live in. Look at all locations to see what is available to you within your price range. 

Personal Space

Regardless of how small you decide to go, don't forget that you will still need personal space, one of the main complaints of those who have already made the move is that they feel like they are constantly in someone’s way. Everyone has their own ideas of what personal space is, and it is difficult to adjust to a smaller home at first. Be patient and you will all get used to it. 

Regardless of how small, ensure that you have a place of your own in your new home, it doesn’t need to be a whole room – even just an armchair tucked away where you can read and have some quiet time will be perfect. 

Downsizing is always a daunting process when you are used to having a large family home filled with people, however there are many positives to downsizing and it will not take long to adjust once you have found the perfect home for you.

 


Re-decorating your living room can be a daunting task, especially if it is the first time you have decided to undertake this type of project. Allow us to help you to tackle this job effectively with our handy tips:

  1. Decide what you want your new living room to look like and have a clear vision in your mind. This does not mean that you need to know every detail, but having a general idea will give you a foundation to build on. Behind every successful project, there is a strategy and a plan, the same should be applied here.
  2. You should do as much research as you can before deciding on the look of your room. There are plenty of home magazines, and websites with great ideas of living room colors and styles. If you find something you like, tear the page out or print the picture off and keep it aside for reference later on. After you have a collection of different designs you can then choose which ones suit you and your home. 
  3. Lighting will be an important aspect of your decoration, as it creates the ambiance, mood and atmosphere of the room. So choose your lighting carefully so that you can create the right feel.
  4. Selecting the correct furniture is vital, again a good idea is to look through magazines and the internet to match the correct furniture to the style of your room.
  5. Curtains can make a room, so it is important to choose wisely, a nicely decorated room with shabby curtains that do not match will ruin your hard work. a good tip is to choose curtains which match the color of the furniture.  
  6. Flooring is another extremely important aspect of decorating, make sure that the color of your flooring matches the color of your furniture. A good tip is to choose neutral colors that will match with several different color schemes, so that you can decorate the walls in future without having to replace the flooring every time.
  7. When purchasing your new furniture, don’t buy too much, it is important that there is enough free space in a room, so that it does not feel like a furniture shop. You want your home to be comfortable.
  8. Pick up any accessories that match in with your scheme to add zing to your room and make it unique. Craft fiars and flea markets are good for this sort of thing.
  9. If you are into plants you could always choose some colorful plants to provide a natural beauty to your new living room.  
  10. Some interesting paintings can really bring style to your room, so get out there and check out some art work that will compliment your choice of decoration.

Decorating any room for the first time can be confusing, with so many styles, colors and furniture to choose from. Proper planning before you even visit the shops will help you to get the room you want at the right price.


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