Specific tips per room.
- Consider buying crockery and glass-ware second hand, things get broken regularly so it will help you keep replacement costs down, and the vintage look is often loved
- Keep it easy to clean. Think of reducing cleaning hours right from the start. Cupboard doors can be flush, wipeable.
- Look for a good compost bin – these are some good options.
- Consider buying good quality second hand linen. Certainly replacement linen can be pre-loved & you can get amazing deals online.
- There are so many great preloved rugs online (Elephant Antiques in Lymington is also a treasure trove)
- Try eBay or look at The Curtain-Exchange for curtains
- For up-cycled bits, or things you find that need some tweaking/re-upholstering, look at a local option with the expert Merissa here
- Avoid buying white towels/bathroom linens (they’ll go yellow really quickly where make-up/fake tan stains them. You will spend a fortune at the laundry, but also the towels will often be delayed – messing up your need for 1-out-1-back logics for changeovers and this can create a lot of stress for the cleaners/you) – opt for colours that will wear well.
- Do consider buying second hand – if you can find the quality. Worth a look.
- Use water saving tech’ – For £8, you can get an EcoFlow lower-flow tap adaptor. They company is based in Milford on Sea. The adaptor, reduces water flow, and swivels the water around the sink. NFE owners get 25% discount – to approx’ £8. Use the code NFE25 for 25% off all products. Visit them here.
- Do use eco-tech to support life-style benefits; Solar water heating systems, or solar thermal systems can be useful to heat your hot tub/pool, or look at a wood-fired options.
- Beware… do put in as much eco-tech as you like, but if you fit the house with brand-new off-the-rack non-eco stuff, you’re 100% going to lose the effect. Increasingly people will be less forgiving as “eco-shame” becomes more common and merges into the tourism industry.
- Toys – we ask all owners to supply some, head to the charity shops. Buy pre-loved board games on Ebay- there are plenty of fab options around
- Books – Try bookstore.org – they are 10% cheaper than Amazon, have most of the same stock, and for every book you buy they give 20-30% of the profits to independent bookstores in the UK. We love owners to have a selection of nature books in houses & profits go to FOLDE Dorset, which is run by NFE’s BCorp and environmental advisor, Amber. Look at our top picks here:
- Plant with pollinators in mind. We work with the Bumblebee Conservation Trust and encourage our owners to do ‘pollinator audits’ to find out what they have for pollinators now, and what they could do in future.
- We will pay £30 toward your £100 audit cost – contact firstname.lastname@example.org to show interest and we’ll get the ball rolling.
- (The BCT planting guide is excellent too – read more here – It has masses of advice about which plants in which season.
- Plant life is also great for tips on planting in the New Forest.
For biodiversity reasons we suggest you steer away from the ‘green desert’ garden. But people like good gardens on holiday, areas they can sit surrounded by nature, in shade and in beautiful spaces. A lawn with no plants, trees and life, won’t help you get the best prices. You can also:
- Plant tough outdoor loving herbs. People often ask to pick their own for meals.
- Use water collection systems
- And finally, we recommend that you buy garden furniture that you can store or protect for winter. There is masses of stuff on FB marketplace (please try to avoid teak, it is really hard to tell if certified products are actually from sustainable sources) – second hand is equally a fantastic option – check out Agrismart or Totus)