13 Tips for Green Apartment Living Directly From Experts

Switching to greener alternatives is a great way to live a sustainable life, especially with Earth
Day approaching. There are many ways to be environmentally cautious while living in an
Most apartment complexes offer compost and recycling bins and there are many alternatives to
things you use every day. To help you get started, we reached out to green experts to share their
tips on how to live a sustainable lifestyle in an apartment. So whether you’re trying to live a
more environmentally friendly life in your  apartment in Boulder, CO, or your studio in New
York, NY, read on to see what they had to say.

1) Ways to recycle when your apartment doesn’t offer the

About 20 billion plastic water bottles wind up in landfills each year or are incinerated. Recycling
those plastic bottles and aluminum cans helps the environment, and in some states like
California, put some cashback in your pocket. Some apartment complexes don’t have separate
recycling available for the residents so recyclable items end up in the trash and ultimately, in the
landfills. Here are a few ways to recycle if your apartment complex doesn’t offer to recycle.

  1. Contact companies to pick up your cans and bottles from your door.
  2. Walk your recyclables down separately if your building has a designated recycling room.
  3. Ask friends who have access to curbside recycling if you could bring the recycling with
  4. Bring your recycling to a drop point or recycling center.
  5. Ask your landlord to get curbside recycling or set up a recycling area and get signatures
    from other people in your building.
  6. Bring it to work and use the office recycling pick up.

Recycle From Home™

2) Be conscientious of where you live
Transportation has a big environmental impact, so choosing where to live can be a really
important moment in your sustainability journey; it’s your opportunity to design a life where you
can walk and bike more and drive less. Here’s a fun exercise I like to use when shopping for a
new house or apartment: 

Grab a map and draw dots on the map to mark the places you need to visit often (for
example, your work, the kids’ schools, your favorite grocery stores, restaurants, coffee
shops, the public library – whatever is most important to you). Hopefully, these are
clustered in one area of the map. If not, start with the most important cluster and repeat
this exercise multiple times. 

Use a string and a pencil to draw two circles, with your cluster of dots at the center; one
that represents 1 mile and another that represents 3 miles; you should, of course, choose
distances that feel right to you and your walking/biking lifestyle. If public transportation
is an option, draw a third circle to represent your reasonable commute on public

These circles represent the best areas for you to live. If you had to do this for multiple
clusters, look for overlapping circles that will allow you to live in one place, yet walk,
bike, or take public transportation to your most important/frequent destinations.
 – Carbon Free Family

3) Planning is a crucial part of a sustainable lifestyle
There are so many fantastic tips for reducing food waste from adding kitchen rolls to your bags
of salad leaves extending their freshness by up to 4 days to keeping your spring onions in a glass
of water and placing them near your kitchen window – this allows you to clip them as you need

them and have them grow back in between. But the most important thing is ‘Planning’, plan your
meals for the week in advance of going shopping. Then check what food you currently have and
after that only buy what you need for the planned meals. Lastly, the freezer is your friend. If you
have too much food, freeze it instead of letting it go to waste. – Foodie Save

4) Composting companies can aid you on your journey
Managing your own composting system in an apartment can be difficult. Some companies
provide a 5-gallon bucket with an easy-to-remove, but tight sealing lid for you to store your food
scraps, and can even empty it for you. – Circle Compost 

5) Simple switches can make a big difference
We believe you don’t have to switch up your entire life to live more sustainably in an apartment.
Simple swaps like replacing your shower head for a water-saving version, switching out your
soap products for low/zero waste alternatives, or starting a worm composting bin on your patio
for your food waste can all make apartment living a little greener. By being informed consumers
and utilizing our purchasing power in sustainable ways, we can co-create a healthier, more
abundant planet. – Heal the Planet

6) Use reusable food wraps to preserve leftovers
Use reusable food wraps for long-lasting produce. Learn veggie revival tips, recipes that preserve
or celebrate seasonal favorites, and how to cultivate a scrappy kitchen ecosystem that alchemizes
trash into treasure – like turning a freezer full of peels into stock, excess herbs into pesto, leftover
berries, and kale into smoothie cubes, the last of this-n-that into salad dressing. Whatever your
imagination dreams up to rise to the challenge of no leaf left behind. – Z Wraps

Photo courtesy of Z Wraps

7) Be mindful of your surroundings and ‘unplug’
We believe living a more sustainable life means being more aware of the entire energy
ecosystem around you, and making little decisions that can have a big impact. This can be as
simple as ‘unplugging’ literally and figuratively. For example, designate a special time of each
day (or week) and commit to shutting off smartphones, computers, and the TV to enjoy some
low-tech time out. Shutting down over time adds up. Chargers, even without being attached to a
phone or device, still draw between 0.1 and 0.5 watts per hour.  – Pink Energy

8) Keep your compost and plants bug-free
We understand that keeping things sustainable and hassle-free isn’t always easy, so take
advantage of their simple sustainable solutions to common problems: Pest products can tackle
fruit flies for those kitchen composters out there.  – Aunt Fannie’s

9) Switch to eco-friendly kitchen accessories 

Each of us has a moral responsibility to be environmentally friendly by reducing waste and
conserving our planet’s precious resources. One simple solution is to get rid of the single-use
plastic products and switch to compostable products in your kitchen. You can start by using eco-
friendly dinnerware such as plant-based cups, plates, straws, and cutlery composting help break
down organic materials and turn them into rich soil, without harming the environment with
chemicals or filling up the landfills. – Greenchain Compostables

10) See if your building provides EV charging equipment
Your apartment is a reflection of you, like your commitment to a sustainable lifestyle and your
decision to drive an electric vehicle. Make a statement by living where that commitment is
shared by your fellow residents and building owners too. Look for EV charging equipment and
talk to the building management about valuable utility incentives and potential carbon credits for
adding charging. – Tracy K. Price, CEO of Qmerit.

11) Reduce your plastic waste with biodegradable bags
We feel one of the best ways to live a sustainable apartment life is to reduce your plastic waste
by looking for re-usable plastic products or non-plastic products, recycle what can’t be reused,
look for products with the least amount of wasteful packaging, and supporting companies with a
sustainable environmental mission. And when you do throw away garbage use biodegradable
bags. – BagUps

12) Be an eco-conscious consumer
Limited space in apartment living can be a real struggle. For anyone pursuing a sustainable
lifestyle, my advice is to adopt the mindset of an eco-conscious consumer. This mindset begins
by minimizing your possessions. It’s easier to get organized when you get back to the basics, plus
life gets simpler. You would be amazed how uncluttered the mind can become just by
decluttering the physical space surrounding you. Next, when shopping and acquiring new
possessions, commit to donating one or two items for every new thing you bring into your space.
This mindset will help you choose quality over quantity and think before buying. – ECO
CRATES of America

13) Support renewable energy 
Whether you rent or own an apartment, anyone can easily reduce their carbon footprint by
supporting renewable energy from sources that replenish themselves naturally — like wind,
water, sun, or forests. There can be affordable ways to reduce your environmental impact. In
states like Maine, you are able to support renewable energy by matching your electricity use with
no-emission 100% Maine-made clean energy. – Maine Green Power

Article written by Redfin

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