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Articles, Yukon News

A Whitehorse company will construct a mixed-income housing project in the south end of the city’s downtown.

The Yukon Government is awarding the construction contract for a 47-unit mixed-income housing project in Whitehorse.

According to the government’s Tender Management System, Wildstone Construction of Whitehorse is getting the project at a cost of just under $16.9 million.

There were three other bidders on the project including one other local firm.

The four-story building is to be constructed at Fourth Avenue and Jeckell Street. The contract includes all site services including hard and soft landscaping.

Construction is to begin shortly and be completed by November of 2021.

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Articles, Real Estate News

It seems difficult to forecast the future of the Canadian real estate market during this time. Many of us have questions about when social distancing measures will be loosened, and life will return to normal.

Earlier this year the market was sizzling and in most major cities, such as Toronto and Vancouver, it was a sellers’ market. Right up until early March it was projected to be a busy Spring homebuying season. Yet, things have cooled down significantly as a result of the covid-19 pandemic lockdown.

Many people are not sure what the future of the Canadian housing market holds. This uncertainty has caused the market to dry up. Yet, many are predicting that this is a momentary sting to our economy and housing market.

Here are a few indicators of what we may be able to expect in the coming months and years:

Real Estate Market Activity in the Short-term

The Toronto Regional Real Estate Board (TRREB) is projecting that as social distancing measures loosen, real estate market activity will quickly ramp up again. This is expected to happen near the end of Summer and likely early Fall. The organization believes that the economy will recover, as business operations go back to normal and unemployment rates decrease.

Homebuyers will have more financial power and will be more inclined to start their home search again. While, sellers will feel more comfortable allowing people to visit their homes for open houses.

For now, some economists are predicting that property values will fall temporarily, and lower home prices will be on the table due to tight market conditions. Sellers will be forced to negotiate on price opening the door for buyers who have job security and financing to swoop in.

Relief measures

The Canadian government has stepped in during this time to bolster the economy and aid to Canadians across the country. They’ve created financial relief measures to help soften the impact of the coronavirus on our economy. These benefits have been put in place to reduce household debt as people navigate this challenging time.

The Canadian government has also created specific measures for businesses. As a result of social distancing, many businesses have taken revenue hits or have had to close their doors for the unforeseeable future. Yet, financial benefits will allow more businesses to keep people employed and provide job security. This could encourage more Canadians to continue to engage with the real estate market

However, it’s unclear how much these financial relief measures will entice Canadians to enter the market and to what degree they will.

Interest rates

The mortgage stress test along with high-interest rates have made it challenging for many homebuyers to qualify for a mortgage. This is especially the case for first-time homebuyers who typically don’t have as much money available for a down payment. The good news is that the stress caused by these obstacles may be eased by recent interest rate interventions.

In the short-term the Bank of Canada has significantly lowered the benchmark interest rate to 0.25% to help boost the economy and keep inflation stable. This is the lowest the rate has ever been. For those who want to jump at the opportunity and take advantage of low interest rates, they can qualify for more affordable mortgage payments. This can also allow them to borrow a larger amount, which could help to finance a home with mores square footage include features they desire.

For first-time homebuyers who don’t have cash tied up in stocks or other investments and have enough money for a down payment this can be an ideal time to make a purchase. Other key considerations include having job security to ensure they’ll be able to make their mortgage payments even a few months from now.

As the coronavirus situation unfolds, it is hard to say how much lowered interest rates will entice people to purchase homes.

Real Estate Market Activity in the Long-term

Data from Google trends  during the recession in 2008-2009 caused by the housing crisis, show that the search volume for homes for sale in the US and Canada continued to increase through these years into 2010/11. This trend provides evidence that following the economic downturn, the market recovered at a relatively fast rate.

This can be promising data that can put people at ease that after the coronavirus pandemic, our economy is likely to rebound. Employment rates will increase since businesses will be able to operate fully again. As a result, household debt will decline because people will be able to afford to pay their bills.

The demand for homes will grow and we will likely see a lot of pent up demand from the time of social distancing that will push people back into the market. This will especially be true in markets where there has already been a lot of interest, such as Vancouver and Toronto. Coupled with the low inventory we saw before this issue occurred; competition in the market will cause housing prices to be on the rise again.

You may be concerned about the direction the Canadian real estate market may take in the future. However, with government intervention the impact of the coronavirus may not hurt the economy as bad as we think. It’s also important to note that previous recessions have shown us we’ve made strong recoveries. The real estate market has been hot the past few years. Once the coronavirus pandemic is under control, we will likely see the market heat up once again.

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Articles, Real Estate News

With social distancing advisories and non-essential business closures in place, many people – some realtors included – are scrutinizing whether real estate is an essential service as it has been classified in many regions across Canada and the US. Those who argue against the essential classification are coming from a good place, with hopes that more-stringent lockdowns will stop the spread of COVID-19. On the surface, shutting down such real estate services as those provided by agents, lenders, lawyers and land registry offices may seem like the sensible thing to do given the current climate. However, the unintended consequences would be detrimental to many people and for many reasons.

Real Estate as an Essential Service

The fact is, real estate is an essential service. This is something that RE/MAX leadership has lobbied hard for, for the right reasons. Alongside food, water and clothing, shelter is one of life’s basic necessities. While agents are advising their clients to “hold off” on selling their homes right now if they can avoid it, it’s important to recognize that under certain circumstances, waiting is not an option.

When Moving is a Must

Someone has already sold their home, and must now find a new place to live. Many of Canada’s housing markets were in seller’s territory in early 2020, prompted by low housing supply and growing demand. This motivated many homeowners to list.

A homeowner has to sell their existing home to finance the new home they’ve already agreed to purchase. Precluding homeowners from selling would have a detrimental domino effect.

A family is living in a precarious place, with no choice but to move. Factors such as neighbourhood crime or unsafe conditions inside the home itself may have forced a decision to move.

A homeowner has to liquidate their home equity in order to finance their business or their life. Social distancing measures mean many businesses are suffering huge losses. Furthermore, Canada’s unemployment rate in March 2020 rose to 7.8 per cent, up from 5.6 per cent in February 2020. Incomes are down. Meanwhile, the monthly bills continue to roll in.

READ: COVID-19 Relief Measures To Help Canadians

Those who were already in the thick of the re-homing process as the pandemic set in are now finding themselves stuck between a rock and a hard place – and homelessness is not an option. With that said, this spring real estate market is anything but “business as usual.” RE/MAX, along with other real estate brands and association, has strongly advised against open houses and in-person showings. The real estate industry has responded in an incredibly responsible way, limiting face-to-face contact and facilitating real estate transactions virtually.

Agents Are Doing Business Differently

Recognizing the need to proceed with real estate transactions, agents have adapted their business practices to meet social distancing measures. This include digital listing presentations, virtual open houses and showings, video conferences, e-signatures and e-transfers, among other things. RE/MAX agents are increasingly completing 100-per-cent digital transactions, and their clients are open to this new approach.

READ: Ontario Real Estate Pushes Forward with Virtual Deals

It’s understandable that people are on edge, as they come to terms with the shaky ground beneath us and the uncertain road ahead. Together, we will get through this and as always, RE/MAX professionals are here to provide guidance to homebuyers and sellers, to help them meet this most basic of human needs.

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Articles

Local pride will be more important than ever in restoring liveability

While Canadians from coast to coast to coast isolate themselves from the many local enjoyments they derived from their neighbourhoods prior to COVID-19, their genuine love for their local community offers many glimmers of hope in the months ahead. In its latest report, RE/MAX explores some of Canada’s best places to live, what makes them so.

According to a Leger survey conducted on behalf of RE/MAX prior to the outbreak, 82 per cent of Canadians say they would sacrifice at least one desirable attribute in order to live in the neighbourhood they believe meets their liveability “must-haves” and 90 per cent of Canadians love the neighbourhoods they live in.

Liveability is about quality of life at a local level. A neighbourhood’s dynamism, or lack thereof, involves a delicate convergence between independent small businesses, public institutions, arts and culture, green spaces and housing, to name a few. The COVID-19 tragedy will impact neighbourhood ecosystems differently across the country, just as the virus itself has. Yet, civic/local pride has been proliferating throughout this crisis in inspiring ways, giving Canadians hope that micro-economies, including real estate, have the resilience to be restored in the near and mid-term.

“For the benefit of local small businesses and the capacity of residents to restore a high quality of life, or liveability, to their respective communities, the degree of local pride should give us all optimism,” says Christopher Alexander, Executive Vice President and Regional Director, RE/MAX of Ontario-Atlantic Canada. “We have to remind ourselves that this underlying pride and the remarkable local relief efforts in aid of small businesses are ultimately what we believe will help our neighbourhoods return to the dynamism we have all come to highly appreciate, and I’m confident we’ll be successful.”

Alexander adds, “While we’ve seen transactions across the country drop considerably in the last six weeks, I am hopeful that housing prices and demand will remain steady with the help of local resilience and local activity in the months ahead.”

The 2020 RE/MAX Liveability Report explores the qualities that give each homeowner the true satisfaction of living in their neighbourhood, such as access to green spaces or restaurants and entertainment. According to the report, 91 per cent of Canadians have at least one important liveability factor that’s very important to them when it comes to the neighbourhood they live in now or would like to live in, in the future.

Not surprisingly, housing affordability came in at the top at 61 per cent, followed by:

Walkability (37 per cent)
Proximity to work (34 per cent)
Low density neighbourhoods (30 per cent)
Proximity to transit (30 per cent)
Access to green spaces/dog parks (30 per cent)
With affordability as the top liveability criteria for Canadians, this lowered the overall liveability score for neighbourhoods in hot markets such as Vancouver and Toronto, despite both having high liveability rankings in other categories.

Canadian homebuyer lifestyles were also considered in determining the best neighborhoods for their specific needs and tastes, based on a specific set of liveability factors. Location scores provided by Local Logic, a Montreal-based data analytics company that partnered with RE/MAX for this report, were leveraged to determine the top neighborhoods in Canada for each lifestyle based on the liveability factors that Canadians deem most important to them.

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Terence Tait Tips

Whenever you leave your home — whether it’s for a fall vacation, the school run, or a just a long day at Costco — you want everything to be in its place when you get back. Protect yourself from theft with these do’s and don’ts of home security.

DO: Lock It Down

Sure, it’s home-security common sense to have locks on all exterior doors, but have you thought about other entrances? Basically, any entrance into the property should have a locking mechanism, including gates and windows. Many burglaries aren’t forced entries; the intruders just walk through unlocked doors.

DON’T: Hide and Seek

After going to the trouble of installing all these locks, don’t hide a door key outside “just in case.” Your home security is compromised the second someone finds out about its “secret” location (yes, thieves will look under the flower pots). If you must have a spare key, keep it in your car, which should also be locked at all times.

DO: Look Who’s Knockin’

Installing a peephole in your front door lets you check out who’s knocking and gives you time to determine the next action. Simply having a peephole in your door can be enough to deter unwanted guests.

DON’T: Encourage “Window Shopping”

Keep valuables such as high-end media centres, jewelry collections, and expensive sports equipment away from windows. Treating your home like a store-window display will just advertise to potential burglars that your home is worth keeping an eye on.

DO: Light It Up

Putting up a set of outdoor motion-sensor lighting near the front door, garage and any nearby alleyways provides a visual deterrent for would-be thieves. After all, uninvited guests tend to stay out of the spotlight.

DON’T: Socialize

We get it — you want to update your social media channels about what’s new and cool in your life. But you may want to keep your plans for that exciting winter vacation or your new Wednesday-night Barre class to yourself. Letting strangers know your whereabouts is another way of telling them your home is up for grabs.

DO: Change It Up

If you’re moving into a new home, take the time and invest in a whole new set of locks. You have no way of knowing who’s got keys to the current locks, and it simply isn’t worth risking it. The same goes if you lose your current key — replace the whole system ASAP.

DO: Safe Landscaping

Hedges, shrubs, and fencing segments provide excellent places for crooks to hide while checking your property for security vulnerabilities. Cut back bushes, trim hedges, and limb trees so that all entrances are visible from the street.

We should all hope for the best but prepare for the worst when it comes to our home security. Fortunately, it only takes a few easy measures to make you and your family feel safe and secure in your own home.

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Articles, Uncategorized

As Covid-19 sweeps its way through our cities and neighbourhoods, we’ve also seen acts of kindness emerge in its wake. From cities and countries pulling together to weather the economic storms ahead, to online communities offering support for individuals, families, students, homeowners, renters, business owners, employees, those looking for work, and those trying to manage their day to day in this new environment. Staying connected to your community while respecting the rules of social distancing is totally possible. Here are some ideas for being a good neighbour while social distancing.

Check in. This could be especially impactful for your elderly or otherwise vulnerable neighbours. They may not be able to run important errands such as getting groceries and medications, or they may be emotionally fragile and might benefit from a friendly check-in from time to time. Reach out to your soon-to-be “next-ies” by leaving a note that includes your phone number, email address and an offer to drop some groceries off on their porch steps.

Join an online group. Apps like Facebook, Slack, WhatsApp and Zoom are simple to use and can help fill the void left by social distancing. Join an online community of neighbours, a local parents’ group, or like-minded hobbyists. Meet at regularly scheduled days/times, much like you might in person, to connect and “chat” with folks who are facing similar worries and wins.

Don’t hoard. Social distancing dictates that people should only leave home for essential errands. While out on your limited outings, stock up on enough groceries that you won’t have to go shopping again in a couple of days, but be mindful of other people’s needs. Canada is not currently experiencing a shortage of toilet paper, canned good or anti-bacterial hand soap – aside from the scarcities caused by hoarders.

Shop online, shop local. Many small businesses are struggling to stay afloat. When ordering your groceries, food delivery or other items online, consider buying from a local business.

Give what you can. Many local homeless shelters, food banks, animal shelters and other non-profits are still operating, so consider donating extra supplies or money if you can spare it. If you’ve already paid in advance for piano lessons, dance classes or a child’s school excursion, rather than requesting a refund, consider leaving that money with the organization/service provider as a donation instead.

Stay informed. Don’t get swallowed up by all the doom and gloom, and ensure you’re getting your news from credible sources.

Practice good hygiene. Wash your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds. Use hand sanitizer. Cough and sneeze into your sleeve. Tissues are a single-use item. And for the love of Pete, don’t touch your face! This is all fairly basic stuff that we’ve all heard from Mom every time cold and flu season rolls around. Furthermore, clean frequently touches surfaces and of course, maintain a safe distance if you must be in contact with anyone.

And last but certainly not least…

Stay home! In order to flatten the curve, government and public health agencies are strongly urging the public to stay home. Have a hankering to go shoot some hoops at the park? Stay home. Feel like stopping by a friend’s place, just to say “hi”? Stay home. Need to quickly drop off a gift for Grandma’s birthday? Stay home. Not feeling well or have you recently travelled? Stay home. Have you been in close contact with someone who has recently travelled or isn’t feeling well? Stay home. The longer we ignore the rules of social distancing, the longer we’ll have to do it.

It’s possible to be a good neighbor while social distancing. In fact, staying away from your neighbors is the best thing you can do right now. Technology has come a long way, allowing us to stay connected with those near and far without ever leaving the safety of home.

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Uncategorized

When buying or selling a home, it’s important to think big. Look beyond the home itself. What does the neighborhood have to offer? These features factor into the “livability” of a community and help contribute to a home’s appeal (translation: higher resale value). Unfortunately, livability factors are often lost among a home’s marble countertops and square footage.

Livability is key to the quality of life that a home offers. Here are five amenities to consider:

Green spaces & parks

According to the survey for the 2019 RE/MAX Housing Market Outlook report, 59 per cent of Canadians expressed a wish to live closer to green spaces. Green spaces and parks are not only beautiful but functional as an extension of living areas, fostering a sense of community.

Bike lanes & walking paths

Safe walking and bike paths are crucial to livability and benefit not only your health but the environment as well.

Public transit

Having access to a good public transit system is ideal, particularly for those living in urban city centers. Removing the need to own a car and reducing environmental footprint are valuable features that close proximity to transit can provide.

Retail & restaurants

The ability to walk to a selection of shopping and restaurants is an important quality for many people, bringing efficiency and character to neighborhoods.

Cultural & community centers

A sense of community fosters quality of life. Visits to local shops, cafes or community centers offer the opportunity to meet and connect with neighbors.

Thinking about community qualities can be an effective way to distinguish properties. Look beyond the home’s physical features add livability to your list of must-have features when you’re buying or selling a home. Not only will you enjoy life more while you live in the home, but these factors can also boost its resale value when you’re ready to make your next move.

Source: RE/MAX Canada

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Articles, Arts & Entertainments

Why do we put our happiness second? Why is it accepted in society that only after due suffering and hard work can we finally deserve joy? This misconception is completely untrue and unfair. Although life has its many struggles, joy should not be put on the bottom of your priority list. Many experts even claim that this misconception is a major reason why many people struggle to feel fulfilled in their lives. Because in the end, our life is so fleeting, your main goal really should be to live in a state of bliss. Being unhappy in your life or in your relationships tells you that there is something wrong. It’s easy to get lost in the negatives of everyday; the traffic, the messy house, the 9-5 job. This can cause chronic stress, and affect your long-term health in ways you may not realize. There are obviously a lot of things you can’t control in your life, like accidents and weather- but this way of life encourages you to see these inconveniences from a different perspective. If you don’t give them the power to bother you, they simply won’t; it’s really that easy. There are plenty of worse things happening in the world right now than your stubbed toe. But when you’re in the moment it can be hard to see that! When you’re writhing in pain from bonking your bed frame, it is not easy to switch your narrative. But with time and practice being more mindful, you will start to notice that the little things no longer bother you, as you don’t give them the power to. The end result should always be to find and spread joy. Nobody really talks about this. It seems to always be about how much money you make, your achievements or how many friends you have- when really, if these things don’t bring you joy they aren’t worthy of a place in your life. The best things in life are the things that bring you joy! So, find a job that makes you happy or go dancing on the weekend if that’s what brings you joy. It will look different in everyone’s life but it will always produce the same effect. If you can find joy in the little things, you’ve already won; a love for living is what will ultimately make you feel the most alive. Really, this is a pretty easy job. There are some aspects of life that aren’t ideal, but part of this means taking the good with the bad, and trying to find joy wherever you can. Appreciate the things you can’t change, and find ways to change the things you can- and with this, everything else will fall into place. The more fun something is, the more you’ll want to do it and this can produce a domino effect in your life. So have fun! There really isn’t any better advice I can give you!

Want to lose weight and help the planet in 2020? Scientists say going vegan might be the answer.

The vegan diet to many of us remains a bit of an enigma. Is it actually healthy or is it just a fad? It seems like every website has contradictory advice, and it is nearly impossible to differentiate the good from the bad. It’s especially difficult to know who to trust in the media, as most companies and organizations have their own agendas. Even though many websites suggest otherwise, the benefits to a vegan diet appear to be pretty much everything you could want: increased energy, weight loss, longevity, decreased risk of heart disease, and a worthy contribution to the planet. This makes sense when you really take a closer look at major companies. The organizations sponsored by meat companies will claim that meat is not a threat to your health, or that dairy should be a staple in your diet. But how do you know if any of this information is true if their funding is coming from companies that aren’t looking out for your health at all? Well, it doesn’t take much to see the state of the country we live in, as well as the rest of the world. With type 2 diabetes and heart disease skyrocketing, it’s obvious that what we are doing is not working. And while many say that this is due to the over consumption of sugar, many scientists beg to differ. They claim that the real threat is the meat and dairy that is in virtually everyone’s diet. Coincidentally, the only foods that contain cholesterol are animal products- and high cholesterol is precisely what clogs arteries and leads to heart disease. Harvard Health confirms this, stating that “a diet rich in saturated fats can drive up cholesterol… which prompts blockages to form in the heart and elsewhere in the body.” In this article you can also find their recommendation of limiting saturated fat to under 10% of your calories a day. This is crazy! This not only contradicts everything most of us have been told our entire lives, it also explains a lot of why we are seeing this global epidemic in the first place. The effects that the meat and dairy industry have on the planet is a whole different story. The Netflix documentary ‘Cowspiracy’ covers this global issue, stating that 91% of Amazon deforestation is due to animal agriculture, as well as 51% of all global gas emissions. This might make you want to take a closer look at your life, especially considering that what these statistics prove, among others, is that most of what is damaging our planet today comes from the desire to eat yummy food. Yet, animal products have proven to be the #1 contributor to heart disease that affects 1/3 people worldwide. I guess our taste buds are causing quite the stir! With all of this in mind, it can still be difficult to relate this to your own life. How will this drastic change affect your life and your wallet? This may come as a surprise, but eating vegan is pretty cheap! Beans, veggies, fruit, bread and tofu are a lot less than the price of organic, free range meat today. I know it’s hard to imagine the impacts these small choices have, and how going vegan could possibly make a difference in the grand scheme of things, but from what I’ve researched, it will. Supply and demand! Every tofu you eat in replacement of chicken is a chicken who gets to grow old and live a happy life. I mean, statistically speaking that might not be true, but I don’t think that any animal truly wants to die. And if it’s not necessary to kill them, why should we? So, hopefully with a little more pondering and research you might join the movement too, and choose life! Obviously, not everyone can switch to this lifestyle, but if you can, it might be what your body has needed all along. And I mean, Kim Kardashian is vegan!

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Terence Tait Tips, Yukon News

I think at some point we have all questioned our money-handling abilities, whether it be the Starbucks runs or the $300 dress that we definitely didn’t need, money is a precious resource that so many of us don’t know how to handle well (me included). Obviously when you work hard at your job you want to spoil yourself a little, and you deserve it! But sometimes it can go a little beyond that into buyers’ remorse. So, with this in mind, I have five tips for you to feel better about your finances and buying habits!

1 – While this may not be an option everyone can afford, putting aside money from every paycheck is a skill that can really pay off over time. The five dollar bills that collect in the jar on your counter can very quickly become the night out or spa day that you and your significant other direly need. There is always a little spare change to toss in, and I think you’ll be surprised by how much you save!

2 – Conscious shopping is a practice that has slowly been rising in popularity over the past years. The habit of spending just to spend is fun, but can sometimes be evident of what you are missing in your life. It might mean your need to accumulate stuff is a way of coping with the hardships of your life. Yoga, running, Zumba, or reading may feel annoying to implement into your routine at first, but will quickly pay off, and bring a lasting and more maintainable sense of joy. All this means is a little extra thought into your buying habits, with the simple question of “will this item bring meaning into my life?” If yes, go for it! But if it most likely won’t add meaning to your life, finding other sources of joy may be worth committing to.

3 – If you’re using organic, all natural soaps, detergents, sprays and home cleaning supplies it might have crossed your mind that they are mighty expensive! If you have the money, it is definitely worth the investment, as they are way better for your health. But, if you think this might weigh heavy on your wallet, there are definitely cheaper alternatives. While a tad more time consuming, making your own all natural soaps and detergents at home is a great way to save some money. A lot of recipes just need baking soda, essential oils and other basic ingredients to create your own personalized products. So, really a quick Pinterest search and a little motivation can go a long way when it comes to your home cleaning products.

4 – Workout at home! I cannot emphasize this enough. Gym memberships are one of the biggest money grabs out there, and in most cases end up barely being used. The easiest, cheapest, and most convenient way to work out is in your own home! Online workout videos and dance parties in your living room are completely free, and you can even do them in your pajamas.

5 – While sometimes you just need to eat out without the hassle of cooking and cleaning up, you can definitely save some precious dollars eating in. Making your own food and meal prepping can end up being a convenient way to pack lunches and prepare for days out. There are so many delicious recipes you can make easily at home, and plenty of Starbucks drinks you can recreate with the random goodies from your cupboard. It just takes a little extra effort, and the money you save will add up pretty quick.

Hopefully these 5 little tips help you out a little moving forward. I’m sure many of you are doing these already, but if you aren’t, there is no harm in some spare cash!

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Uncategorized

As the effects of climate change wreak havoc in every aspect of our lives and can no longer be ignored, we have to find ways to combat this epidemic. Thankfully, this starts in your home! As much as you can argue that one household making an effort to be more environmentally friendly won’t make a difference, it will! And often these small lifestyle changes produce a domino affect among your community. Here are 5 ways to contribute to mission “there is no planet b,” and produce less of a carbon footprint on our home planet!

1 – Scrap the plastic! For many of us, plastic is a major staple in our lives, that thankfully, can be easily replaced with more sustainable alternatives. Reusable bags, washable beeswax wraps (for non-vegans) in replacement of plastic wraps, and cloth baggies can be found in virtually any grocery store. This actually will end up saving you money in the end, it just takes a little extra effort in the beginning to remember them from the trunk of your car.

2 – Pack your own water! This minor inconvenience is a major win for turtles and again, will end up saving you money.

3 – A lot of stores are switching to more sustainable cutlery alternatives, like compostable forks and napkins, but it’s always smart to bring your own straw. Whether this is an old plastic straw from your junk drawer or a pack of metal ones, any effort to bring your own utensils is a huge achievement.

4 – Cloth napkins are all the rage these days, but actually can be credited to your trend-setting Grandpa’s 100 year old handkerchief. You can make them out of old shirts and cloths, or you can just use up the ones you already have. Either way, cloth napkins are a great idea.

5 – Thrifting is one of the easiest ways to contribute to the environmental movement. By buying your clothes used, you’re protesting the damaging fast fashion craze that is finally being replaced by more sustainable alternatives. Every item you buy used is one less that has to be put in a landfill, and countless dollars saved in the process. And what’s the harm in clothing with a little love and character, it just makes it all the more cozy.

With these 5 tips in mind, you will without a doubt be the shopper to beat at every grocery store, who can proudly say they are taking steps everyday to help save the planet, and create a cleaner planet for the future generations!

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