More than just real estate

Going “Light Green”

At this point, we all know how important it is to “reduce, reuse and recycle.” We’ve learned about switching out incandescent light bulbs for compact-fluorescent light bulbs, and we know to shop locally to reduce our carbon footprint. But there are so many more ways to go green than you may realize. Today, Kyle Vetter, an agent in Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage’s Mequon office, shares with Metro Milwaukee Living five little-known ways you can go green at home and possibly save some green in the process.

  1. Install power strips to all electronics: Americans spend over $1 billion annually paying for the electricity our TVs and DVD players use while they are off. The fact is, everything that is plugged in draws power, even when not in use (this waste of power is termed “vampire energy”). So unplug those cell phone charger and coffee pots when you aren’t using them.
  2. Stop the junk mail attack: The average American receives 41 pounds of junk mail each year! This obviously contributes to the millions of acres of trees that are lost annually, thus reducing the planet’s ozone-scrubbing ability dramatically. Visit www.41pounds.org to see how they can help you stop up to 80-95% of unwanted mail and catalogs.
  3. Sign up for renewable energy credits: We Energies offers free sign up and allows you to supplement 25%, 50% or 100% of your energy use with renewable energy. Click here [www.we-energies.com/secure/energy_for_tomorrow.htm] to sign up today!
  4. Wash in cold water: 80-90% of the energy used to clean clothes is from heating wash water. With improvements in machine and detergent technology, cold water will now effectively clean whites and colors. If you do run into an oily stain, try setting the machine to warm instead of hot. This can reduce energy use by half!
  5. Go low-flow: Installing low-flow shower heads, toilets and faucet aerators can reduce your water usage dramatically. For example, switching one shower head for an efficient model can save a family of four up to $285 a year!

If you have any other questions about going green, or about the real estate market in general, contact Kyle Vetter by clicking here.

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