Sustainable Condo Living

Saturday, June 1st, 2019

Eco-living may not seem like the easiest task to achieve when living in an apartment or condo. For many, a smaller space immediately makes one think they have fewer options than those living in houses. Rest assured that size doesn’t matter when it comes to going green! There are many things that you, as a condo or apartment dweller, can do to reduce your carbon footprint. At The Barrel Yards, we understand the importance of sustainable amenities that will not only benefit our homeowners, but will positively impact the environment in which we live. All apartments at both The Cooperage and The Onyx have been designed to include a number of standard green features:

● Energy Star appliances

● Low-emission paints

● Direct air venting to the outside

● Individual suite electrical metering

● Low-flow bath and shower heads

● Low-consumption toilets

● Energy-efficient thermal window systems

● Programmable thermostats

● CFL-compatible light fixtures in suites

● Bicycle parking area

We are continuously taking steps at The Barrel Yards to reduce our environmental impact by purchasing materials from local sources and recycling excess building materials and waste. But remember, the changes you implement within your suite are also important! We’ve outlined five tips that you can adopt today to maintain a sustainable and environmentally-friendly lifestyle for years to come.

Consider apartment-friendly plants and herbs

To capitalize on the environmental benefits of green design, do your part by setting up an indoor garden. House plants can offer significant benefits for the space around them and the air that we breathe. Not only do plants put oxygen into the air, but they also absorb toxic chemicals. If you’re worried that your living space doesn’t get enough natural sunlight, there are still plenty of options to consider. A quick online search can help you find the best plants for your household needs!

Another quick and easy way to reap the benefits of house plants is to start an herb garden. A DIY herb garden will provide you with all of the good that plants have to offer, and will ensure that you have fresh herbs ready for every meal. A win-win!

More natural materials, less synthetics

Synthetic fabrics release chemicals over time, a process that is otherwise known as “off-gassing.” The easiest way to stop this from happening is to stop buying synthetic materials. Whether you’re purchasing new curtains, bed sheets, couches, or armchairs —opt for natural fabrics that can be washed easily such as cotton or wool. Area rugs and carpets are said to be the biggest culprit when it comes to off-gassing. Replacing your current rug sooner than later with a more natural alternative can help you achieve your eco-living goals!

Don’t give up on composting

The idea of composting in a small space such as an apartment or a condo has often deterred people from implementing it in their homes. Despite its seemingly bad reputation, there are plenty of options available to apartment dwellers when it comes to composting. There are a number of products on the market that make composting easy and odourless. Or if you’re feeling confident enough, consider making your own!

Power off and unplug

Perhaps the easiest tip to implement and abide by: if it’s not in use, unplug it! While it may not seem like a big deal, unplugging your chargers and/or electronic devices from the wall when they’re not in use can make a huge difference. Contrary to popular belief, most electronic devices draw on electrical power even when they’re turned off. The energy that escapes when they’re turned off is called “phantom energy.” To reduce this waste of energy, unplug your devices when they’re not in use, or add a charging station to your home.

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle!

Transform your home into an environmentally-friendly space by employing the three Rs into your daily regime. To limit the material garbage that can accumulate in your condo, the best thing you can do is to immediately limit the garbage you make. Whether it’s plastic bottles, grocery bags, or old towels; do your best to make the most out of every item you have in your home that would otherwise go to waste. If you don’t have one already, pick up a recycling bin for your unit and encourage your neighbours to do the same!

As a resident of The Barrel Yards, you have the opportunity to be featured in a Resident Spotlight on our blog! Have you fallen in love with your home at The Barrel Yards? Whether you’re a new member of our community or a long-standing resident, we want to hear from you. Reach out to us on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter if you are interested in telling your story.