- Leasing Makes Solar Energy Affordable
Do you want to add solar panels to your home with no upfront costs? If the answer is yes, then you may want to consider leasing a system.
Leasing a solar energy system is similar to leasing a car in that you pay a monthly lease fee for a certain amount of usage. With a car, the usage is a certain number of miles per year. With the solar lease, the usage is calculated based on your current electric usage. However, the length of the leases differ. For a car, a standard lease is generally from 2-5 years; for the solar lease, leases are generally 20-30 years.
In essence, the solar leasing company buys the solar equipment, takes all the applicable energy credits, and leases it to consumers over a period of time that makes it affordable. Additionally, since the solar company owns the equipment, it is responsible for maintaining the equipment over the life of the lease. If the homeowner decides the sell the residence, the lease can be prepaid and transferred, which makes for a more attractive sale.
Want to learn more? The following companies offer residential solar leasing:
- Have You Tested Your Home for Radon Exposure Lately?
Cases involving non-smoking lung cancer are on the rise and radon is generally the culprit. Radon is a naturally occurring, invisible and odorless radioactive gas that's present at high levels in one in 15 American homes. Millions of Americans are unknowingly exposed to this dangerous gas, but testing your home and fixing any problem avoids the health hazard from it. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Surgeon General are urging every homeowner who hasn't tested for radon in at least two years to do so. Radon levels in soil can vary over time, so getting clean results on your new home doesn't guarantee that you aren't being exposed five years later.
Contact the state radon office via this link to find out more about purchasing radon kits or radon inspectors and to determine whether you live in a high radon area.
- Opting Out of Phone Book Delivery
For many of us who no longer use the telephone books, automatically receiving them at our doorstep is a nuisance and a waste of paper. Now you can opt-out of the YellowPages online. Or, if you'd rather call 800-YB-YELLOW.
To stop deliver of the SuperPages, you need to call 800-888-8448.
- Buy Local
This website uses your zipcode to locate stores, small farms and restaurants that sell locally produced organic and sustainable food, including dairy, eggs, cheese, cage-free chickens, and antibiotic- and hormone-free meat. Remember, you are what you eat.
- Calculate Your Life Expectancy
The Alliance for Aging Research, a nonprofit organization, has developed a questionnaire to determine your expected longevity. It also will make suggestions to help you live longer.
- Don't Want to Give Out Your Real Phone Number?
If you place an online ad, you may not wish to display your real telephone number. This service allows you to buy your own toll-free telephone number, which you can then forward to your home phone, cell phone, etc.
- Even Hummer drivers can help reduce global warming
Have you ever wondered how much pollution your car or SUV emits? Well, not only can you can find out, but you can actually give back to the global environment by funding alternative energy projects through TerraPass.
- Free Email Reminders from the Registry of Motor Vehicles
Starting in 2009, the Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV) no longer reminds drivers when their license is up for renewal. This free service allows MA residents to receive renewal reminders for driver's licenses or MA ID's via email, phone, or text message.
- Free MD
This virtual doctor can help you assess your symptoms and points out when you should consult with your doctor. While it is not a substitute for a medical exam, it is a great starting place to figure out if further medical treatment is necessary.
- Get rid of your junk mail once and for all!
A client recently shared this wonderful idea with me. Got junk mail? Who doesn't? But getting removed from junk mail lists is a time consuming and frustrating task. Instead, you can join GreenDimes and for $3 per month, they will do it for you. Plus, each month they plant a tree for you to help replenish the trees killed off to print this trash.
- Got Books?
Do you have an office full of old books that you want to get rid of? Instead of throwing them out, check out Got Books. They will pick them up, sell them, and donate a portion of the proceeds to local charities. They even take DVDs, record albums, audio books, and videos!
- How to reach a customer service person
If you get frustrated when dealing with automated phone systems, you can find out tips on how to reach a human via this web page. It is a great resource.
- Make a Difference by Sponsoring a Business
With Kiva, it is possible for the average person to participate in micro-lending by sponsoring a business in a developing country. The process is simple. You choose the business and make a small loan, which is paid back with interest over a 6-12 month period. Whiie the loan in being paid back, you will receive email updates from the business owner. This is a great way to do some good with your money.
- Off the Beaten Path
If you plan to take a road trip, check out this website, where you can find some quirky landmarks, such as: The Museum of Bad Art (Dedham, MA), The Big Duck (Flanders, NY) or even the Elvis is Alive Museum (Wright City, MO). Travel safely!
- Recycle Your Christmas Tree
Visit this site to learn about how you can recycle everything from your Christmas Tree (sans decorations) to your old car battery.
- Recycling by Numbers
What do those little numbers stamped on the bottom of your plastic containers mean? Use this helpful resource to determine if your plastic is recyclable or toxic to the environment.
- Rent a Cow and Promote Sustainable Agriculture
Rent Mother Nature offers you the opportunity to *lease* a cow and promote small-scale farms. You will receive a harvest - your choice of Brie or Cheddar cheese. Plus, you can order an action photo of your cow. Be a hero and buy local!
- Support the companies that support GLBT equality
Buying for Equality: A Guide to Companies and Products That Support Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Equality is a publication of the Human Rights Campaign. The HRC Buyer's Guide gives you the information you need to support products from companies that support equality. Together, we can help effect real change in workplaces across the country.
- Tired of Getting Junk Mail Catalogs?
Catalog Choice invites you to opt out of receiving catalogs in the mail. Simply enter your name and address and select the catalog(s) that you no longer wish to receive and they do the rest. This is an easy and simple way to save a tree or two and help the environment. Plus, it doesn't cost you a dime.
- You Can Recycle Tyvek Envelopes
DuPont, manufacturer of those plastic Tyvek mailing envelopes, has a nationwide recycling program in place. Click here to learn more and go green.
- Order Eco-Friendly Holiday Cards
If you're planning to order paper holiday cards, consider buying them from PaperCulture.com. Paper Culture uses 100% post consumer recycled paper for all its cards. And through its new Cards to Trees program, for every new order, Paper Culture plants a tree on your honor.