How to have a greener retirement

Posted in: Wellbeing Last updated: 18 Feb 2014

With everyone feeling the financial pinch and climate change knocking on our door, there has never been a better time to start living greener. With the help of some established green experts, we’ve put together some top tips on how to be more environmentally friendly.

Eco-friendly alternatives

Loft Insulation – Insulating your home is a simple way to save waste and reduce heating bills. And if you want to be super eco-friendly, you can choose to use alternative products like recycled paper and sheep’s wool, instead of traditional materials like Glasfibre or Rockwool.  The amount you’ll save will boil down to your property size, but it could be up to £250 per year. For more information visit Energy Saving Trust.

Energy saving bulbs – If every household used low energy bulbs, cumulatively, we could prevent 16 billion tons of carbon emission over the next 25 years. If you swapped all of your lighting to low energy bulbs, you could save yourself an average of £55 per year.

Solar panels – Create electricity organically by using the sun’s natural energy. Choosing to have solar panels is a long-term investment, after the price of initial installation you can expect to have free electricity for years to come.

Green gardening

You might already be a garden enthusiast but how green is your garden? Avoid using chemicals such as weed killers and pesticides and let all-natural compost do its magic instead.


Food Waste – According to Love Food Hate Waste, we waste £12.5bn a year on throwing away food alone. They advise that by understanding ‘use by dates’ and learning how to keep food fresher for longer, we can avoid waste and save pounds. To learn more visit Love Food Hate Waste.

Make Your Own Compost – Shropshire Waste advises you to turn your kitchen and garden waste into compost. To create compost, you need to divide your waste into ‘Green’ and ‘Brown’ waste and then mix them up 50:50 into a home compost bin. For more guidance on the difference between ‘Green’ and ‘Brown’ waste, take a peek at their video.

Don’t Throw It Away – As they say, “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure”. You might not need that computer desk anymore but there’ll be someone out there who does. Freegle is a free site where anyone can post unwanted items and if you need an item you can also request this on Freegle too. Their initiative ‘Give as you Live’ has made recycling old items easier than ever, and you never know what gems you might unearth. Find a Freegle group in your area.

Buying local

By buying local, you’re dramatically reducing the carbon footprint involved in food transportation. Instead, shop at your local farmers market, or grow your own. By eating what is in season only, not only are you reducing CO2 emissions, you are also supporting the local economy.

You don’t have to throw yourself into being an eco-warrior. Start with little changes like using low energy light bulbs and buying locally. By living greener, you can care for the environment and also save a few pennies along the way.

Note: Whilst we take care to ensure Hub content is accurate at the time of publication, individual circumstances can differ so please don’t rely on it when making financial decisions. OneFamily do not provide advice so it may be worth speaking to an independent financial advisor about your own circumstances.