Financing a Green Lifestyle: Social Security and Sustainable Energy
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Financial sustainability and environmental sustainability might seem like subjects that are pretty far removed from each other.
The truth is – they are closer than you think!
Practically speaking, living sustainably now can help you save up to be financially sustainable later on.
This way you won’t have to worry about things like “How do I time Social Security benefits? so that I can get the best reward and still be able to enjoy my retirement?”
So what do you do now?
How do you save extra now?
How do you use environmental sustainability measures to build a financially sustainable future?
Tax Breaks and Credits
The US is happy to give you a break on and credits toward home improvements that are made to help make your home more environmentally friendly.
To take advantage of these credits and breaks, you are usually required to install initially expensive changes such as solar panels, tankless water heaters or wind turbines.
However, that initial investment now could save you thousands on your utility bills in the future.
After you have these things installed, take the money they save you and use it to pay off the initial investments. Then, when you’ve got those paid off, take the money you save and invest it in an annuity fund for your retirement.
Sell the Cars
Walk or ride a bike instead. There are three reasons for this:
- Selling your car gives you a good influx of cash which you can use to start an investment portfolio (if you don’t have one) or beef up the one you’ve already built. Investing is an important part of financial health.
- The profits you make from that investment can be funneled into a high yield, compound interest based savings account.
NOTE: If you don’t yet have a savings account, use the cash from the car to start one and leave the investing until later.
- Walking and biking aren’t just better for the environment, they are better for your body. Regular exercise helps your body stay fit and healthy, which will come in handy as you age (and, potentially, make your retirement a lot more fun).
Use public transportation or a car sharing program when you need your own transport.
Grow Your Own
Plants are great air purifiers and are better for the environment than the air purifiers that you plug into the wall. Use planters in your house to grow your own herbs and spices. Use bigger planters outside to grow your own veggies, berries and fruit.
Growing your own produce saves you from having to make trips to the store and saves you money on the trips you do make. Apply that savings to your savings account or your investment portfolio!
Even better, growing your own produce gives you more control over what you put into your body. This helps you eat more healthily which, just like with exercise, will be important to your health now and later on.
These are just three ways that financial and environmental sustainability overlap. How many more can you come up with?
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Great post! We love growing as much of our food as we can.