Energy Efficient Living with Children

by D.D. Dolan 06/09/2019

As you've gotten older, you have become successful at living an energy efficient lifestyle. You purchased a fairly green home and have developed good habits for living green. Now you have children who are reaching an age to start doing things on their own and contribute to household chores and upkeep. Awesome. Just remember that you’ll need to work with them to teach them the good habits you developed for yourself. You’ll need to demonstrate how to perform tasks without being wasteful and will want to monitor your kids as they take on new chores and responsibilities. Start with the basics and moving on from there, your children will soon be able to contribute to your home and develop positive habits for maintaining an eco-friendly and energy efficient lifestyle.

Here are some areas of responsibility where children are likely to misuse energy and some ideas for guiding them in the right direction from the start. 

Water usage:

It is very easy for kids to overuse water. The most significant use comes from brushing their teeth and showering. It might seem to you like a no-brainer, but you'll need to show your children they don't need to run the faucet the whole time they're brushing their teeth. Teach them just to get their toothbrush wet and then complete brushing before they turn the tap back on to rinse. Long showers and overfilled baths are another way that children can unintentionally over-use water. Show them how to be efficient while showering. For example, by shampooing their hair first and then letting conditioner set while they wash their body to save time. To further assist simply use a timer to limit the length of their shower and help them become aware of time-wasting things they might be doing. For baths show them the level to which they should fill the tub and maybe mark the line with a decal so that they don't overfill the tub unnecessarily. 

Dishes are another area of potential waste. If you have a dishwasher, the easiest thing to do is to get your kids in the habit of rinsing dishes immediately after using them and placing them directly in the washer. Plates and cups with dried food and sauces require more water to rinse before putting them in the dishwasher. If you're teaching children to wash dishes by hand, rinsing and washing immediately after use is still the best method. First, fill both sides of your sink with water and add dish soap to one side. Use one side to rinse all your dishes and the other for washing. Drain the rinse side and refill for a final rinse to remove soap before placing dishes in the drying rack.

Electricity usage: 

Teaching your children good electricity management is easy in theory, but you will have to stay on top of their practices while they build good habits. The simplest way to start is by teaching them to turn off the lights every time they leave a room. This practice will quickly help you manage your family's electricity bill. As your kids begin to accumulate new technology, you'll want to make sure you're working with them to create the habit of turning off their gaming systems after use, turning off the television and DVD player when they’re done watching it and shutting down their laptops or family computer. Managing constant flows of electricity throughout your home is a good thing to teach your children and an effective way to live an energy efficient lifestyle.

Now that you have some ideas for how to get your kids positively contributing to your family’s water and electricity use its time to start thinking about food waste management. Read on to part two of this article for more ideas.

About the Author
Author

D.D. Dolan

SReS SRS GRI e-PRO

First, let me be clear about what I am not. I am not just another salesperson. I am a service professional. Buying or selling your home is a significant and often emotional event in your life; it is not at all the same as buying a product in a store. Choosing the right Real Estate Professional to assist you is essential. Just as you rely on your attorney or accountant to serve your interests with honesty, diligence and integrity, so can you rely on me to represent your real estate interests in the same manner. Real Estate is a Service Profession and my approach is Client-Oriented. More than numbers, success lies in achieving your goals. I understand that every situation is unique, and statistics do not tell the whole story. My strong repeat and referral business is a clear indication of that success. Listening to the client is crucial. Identifying the clients' needs is the first, and most important step in the practice of Real Estate. I pride myself on my attention to detail. From fact-checking, to enticing and thorough descriptions in a listing, to providing the most current information, I never stop at "good enough.” My promise... Client service is always handled personally. Your research, your marketing … all of your real estate needs are my concern, never delegated. Marketing will always be creative, memorable, and far-reaching. Enthusiastic, evocative descriptions and high-quality photos engage buyers! Technology has greatly impacted the practice of Real Estate, and I fully utilize current capabilities. As technology advances, you will always benefit from the best of it! Communication with clients is always prompt and pertinent. Whether you want to know how your home is being perceived, whether new possibilities have come on the market for you, or simply what the next steps are, you will have the information you need when you need it. My skills, dedication, and "straight talk”, combined with enthusiasm and professionalism make me a valuable asset to the buyers and sellers I represent. I will help you easily navigate the complexities of the Real Estate process for a superior service experience. 

EXPERIENCE: Re-sales and new construction, across all segments of the residential market: Single-family homes, Condominiums, and Co-operatives 

EDUCATION: BA in Political Science with Minors in English and History from William Smith College, Geneva, New York 2 years attendance Syracuse University College of Law 

DESIGNATIONS AND ASSOCIATIONS: Licensed Associate Broker, New York State Member, National Association of Realtors Member, New York State Association of Realtors Seller Representative Specialist Seniors Real Estate Specialist Graduate, Realtor Institute e-Pro Certified Certified Home Marketing Specialist President, White Plains Outdoor Arts Festival