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How to Unplug at Home

Posted by on Oct 22, 2014 in Lifestyle | 0 comments

Source: Lukas Machnik

Source: Lukas Machnik

The following is a guest post by Tali Wee of Zillow.

In this fast-paced world driven by technology, individuals find it challenging to personally communicate in-person with family and friends. Moreover, the abundance of household gadgets keeps families engaged in a digital space, separating them from the natural environment.

Revive and refresh digitally-dependent households by completing a technology detox. This includes removing or restricting the overload of abundant technology and adopting environmentally-friendly home improvements.

Green updates create a relaxing ambiance while reducing the family’s carbon footprint. Moreover, a home with eco-friendly features is appealing to Pittsburgh homebuyers when it comes time to sell. Here are three ways to unplug at home.

1. Install Solar Panels

Solar panels convert light from the sun into usable electricity for the household. This clean energy source is environmentally friendly and reduces electricity expenses for homeowners. Solar panels are available from local home improvement retailers. They come in different styles and sizes for roof or backyard installation. Install using a do-it-yourself method or through a contractor. Be sure to check permits with the local community zoning board before installation.

2. Update the Décor

Remove multiple TVs throughout the house, leaving one communal TV in the living room. Add shelving to cleared spaces and fill with books and board games to encourage your family to read and play games together. Avoid technological dependence at meal times by adding a decorative bowl to hold phones, iPads and cords in the kitchen or entryway. Finish off the décor update by introducing natural elements into the home such as wood, glass and plant life. Freshen up the kitchen with a fresh vase of flowers and give the living room a chic look by adding new plants and decorative wooden ornaments.

3. Plan Screen Time in Advance

Avoid the mindless reach for the phone or TV remote after dinner by planning screen time in advance. Be intentional about family time shared engaging in digital entertainment. At the start of the week, choose programming the family enjoys watching together. Monitor the amount of internet and social media usage by choosing an internet router with timing controls. Shut off access throughout late afternoon and evening to ensure your family engages on a personal level while awake and gets quality sleep at night.

Avoid technology dependence and become more environmentally-conscious by considering these three suggestions to unplug at home. Other tips to detox from technology and implement green changes at home include: replacing standard incandescent light bulbs with LED bulbs, avoiding the garbage disposal by creating a backyard compost heap, saving water by installing low-flow showerheads and reducing particle pollution by replacing wood-burning fireplaces with gas or energy-efficient alternatives.

Nicole knows making small changes for the greener add up over time and hopes you’re inspired to make some changes of your own after reading her articles. She focuses on easy, green, homemade personal products and green living tips for city dwellers. Nicole lives in Pittsburgh, PA and you can find her on twitter at @_nlg_.

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