If you are one of the lucky ones to own a home in Toronto, you likely know the costs don’t end when you finally settle on the place of your dreams.
It’s not a unique scenario: bright and hopeful new homeowners finally land their dream home only to become swamped by maintenance costs, taxes, and energy bills that sky-rocket through the recently-purchased roof. In an expensive city like Toronto, there is often little room for mistakes in your accounting, especially after signing onto a new mortgage. To help existing homeowners cut down their costs, we caught up with new homeowner Tori Puras to find out how she’s cut costs since becoming a new homeowner. We also asked the City of Toronto for some tips that will also help you save some green – and help the planet in the process.
Take advantage of Live Green Perks when shopping: whether you’re stocking your fridge, shopping for new or consigned clothing, or looking to decorate your house with ethically sourced decor, the Live Green Perks App is amazing for finding deals with brands you can feel good about supporting. It’s really a win-win-win.
Be thoughtful about how you use energy in your home: Using a programmable thermostat that will automatically adjust the temperature in your home while you’re at work is a really effective way to reduce your energy bills. Planning a renovation? Consider including air sealing, upgrading insulation and upgrading to high-efficiency furnace in your plans – by combining these with your reno plans, you will definitely save a lot. Click here to read more about how you can reduce your energy bills and your carbon footprint at the same time.
A deep energy retrofit can go a long way: If you want to go even further, consider a deep energy retrofit of your home and you will definitely be rewarded for your efforts! There are tons of programs and incentives available to home-owners who don’t qualify for low-income conservation programs. Find out more at by visiting betterhomesto.ca.
Cut the waste: Did you know that the average Canadian household throws out over $1,100 of food each year? And food waste is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to money out the door at home. Find out more about how you can reduce waste at home or work with your neighbours to apply for community waste reduction grant.
Grow Your Own Food: if you find your grocery bill is putting you over budget each month, why not start growing your own food? If you gawked at that sentence because of the infamously small spaces Toronto homes and condos occupy, we encourage you to really consider your space. Windowsills and balconies can be better-than-ideal homes for certain plants and herbs. You can grow your own food no matter how many square feet you occupy.
We caught up with new Toronto home-owner Tori Puras to find out how she’s managing her new home, and how she and her husband are putting some of these tips to the test and saving each month. Take a look below:
For more tips on how to go green at home, check out this great series of articles from Live Green Toronto!