Decorating for the Holidays? Learn 5 Tips for Staying Energy Efficient
‘Tis the Season for Saving Energy
It’s hard to believe, but the holidays will soon be here. This time of year offers plenty of reasons to celebrate, but the electricity bill generally isn’t one of them. Let’s talk about some ways to make your holiday season more energy efficient and easier on the planet. You’ll save money, and you’ll be doing your part to ensure white Christmases for generations to come.
Make Your Own Decorations and Costumes
Your local megastore has aisles of mass-produced goods to help you get into the holiday spirit, but we’d recommend going the DIY route. Why? Because any time you can make something at home, be it Thanksgiving décor, a Halloween costume, or Xmas decorations, you’re saving energy.
Think about it: those products don’t just magically appear at the supercenter across town. They have to be shipped there, often from around the globe. Not only that, but it takes energy to manufacture all of those delightfully affordable holiday knickknacks.
If you can make holiday decorations and costumes out of unused things you already have, that’s all the better. Upcycling is truly the way to go!
Combine Your Shopping Trips
If you’re like most people, you do plenty of driving during the holidays. In addition to your usual grocery runs, you’ll probably cruise all over the city looking for gifts and decorations, not to mention those last-minute errands for forgotten (but essential) Thanksgiving or Holiday recipe ingredients.
Try to keep your driving to a minimum. Why take three trips when you can combine them into one? And if you plan ahead, you might be able to do much of your gift shopping online, with a few stops at local small businesses for special items.
Bask in the Glow of LED Lights
OK, so we know LED lights haven’t always been the most aesthetically pleasing option. But have you seen them lately? Some of the newer LED holiday lights are nearly indistinguishable from the warm incandescent lights you remember from childhood. The real bonus is that they use about a third of the electricity as your old lights. This time of year, you can use all the savings you can get, right?
Pro tip: put your holiday lighting display on a timer. It’s easy to forget to turn it off with everything else you have going on, and there’s no need to keep it lit 24 hours a day.
At first blush, you might think that buying a fake Xmas tree would be the most energy efficient option. After all, you only have to buy it once, and you can use it over and over again. But here’s the thing: most fake trees are made with environmentally disastrous PVC, and when you do finally tire of your fake tree, you’ll have no way to recycle it.
Instead, buy a local tree, organically grown if possible. And if you really want to be sustainable, opt for a live tree that can be planted after the season is over. That way, you’ll have a carbon-reducing, oxygen-producing, holiday memory that you can enjoy for many Christmases to come.
Stick With the Classics
When it comes to Christmas lights, it can be tempting to get into a National Lampoon-level arms race with your next-door neighbor. And if you’re using LED lights, well, go ahead and light up the neighborhood. But don’t forget about the decorative magic of tinsel, ornaments, and all the other things that shimmer and shine. Reflective decorations have a way of multiplying your lighting display, and they look wonderful.
However you celebrate the holiday season, we hope your home is filled with light, love, and laughter. Oh, and if you happen to be between homes, let Homes.com be your holiday helper. If we start soon, we could have you decking the halls in time for Santa Claus!
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