5 Things You Can Do to Save Money and Also Help the Environment

Posted September 1, 2020 by in Lifestyle
woman holding coffee

Many things that save money are also things that help the environment. Let’s take a look at 5 ways to enjoy substantial savings, while also living more sustainably:

woman drinking a coffee

Consider Shopping Second-hand Whenever Practical

You can often save heaps of money by carefully selecting high-quality secondhand items instead of purchasing new items. This is particularly true when it comes to big-ticket items — things like furniture, cars and designer handbags. 

Secondhand purchases are also beneficial for the environment, as you’re helping to maximize the useful lifespan of the items you buy.

Swap Out Single Use Disposables for Reusable Alternatives

 Consider making the following zero-waste substitutions:

  • Ditch disposable plastic wrap; replace it with beeswax wrap or reusable meal prep containers. 
  • Stop investing in facial tissues, and use handkerchiefs instead.
  • Clean up with reusable cloth wipes instead of the disposable kind.

Think Twice Before Committing to a New Purchase

Many Australians feel burdened by needless clutter. When you’re considering a new purchase, ask yourself whether it’s an item you really need, or if it is one that will need to be decluttered later. Can you envision the item still being useful a decade from now? If not, is there an alternative item you could purchase that would be?

Curbing un-needed impulse buys and embracing minimalism can help you to save heaps of money, and can also help you to live more sustainably.

Think of Clever DIY Ways to Reuse and Repurpose Things

  • Reuse plastic milk bottles: You can transform them into piggy banks, sand scoops, peg holders or a hundred other things.
  • Re-use your cast-off textiles such as shabby sheets, worn-out linens or torn t-shirts by cutting them up and transforming them into baskets, rag rugs or similar fabric crochet projects. 
  • Find more helpful ideas HERE.

Recycle All That You Can

Recycling is important and beneficial, but it’s best to think of it as the last line of defense in your quest for frugality and sustainability. You might earn a small bit of cash from recycling; but unless you focus a substantial amount of your time on it, you probably won’t earn or save much money from doing it. 

For example, according to the Waster website, the going payout for recycled paper in Australia is somewhere around $45 per ton. Obviously, at that rate, turning in recyclable paper is not exactly a get-rich-quick scheme. Recycling scrap metals does tend to be more lucrative, but it is still hard work for not much money. 

Aside from that, Australia has been dealing with an ongoing recycling crisis. The main reason for the crisis is that we produce more recyclable waste than we have facilities to properly deal with. So avoiding the creation of waste is far preferable to creating it and then recycling it.

Of course, it isn’t always possible to avoid creating waste. Recycling is still the right thing to do when you have unwanted recyclable items that you need to dispose of. It’s much better than sending your unwanted items to a landfill.

Here are a few suggestions for things that can be recycled:

You can feel good about implementing any or all of these 5 strategies to save money and live more sustainably, as all of them are win-win for both your wallet and the environment.