Save cash with less trash

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Here's one small tip for potential household savings, depending on your municipality and its local refuse collection scheme: use a smaller garbage can.

Most of our neighbors have 45 or 64 gallon garbage cans, so they're paying $93 or $132 per quarter year. We're using a 13-gallon can, and it's costing us $27/quarter. Our city offers a lot of advantages in reducing landfill waste -- glass, steel, aluminum, and #1 PET and #2 HDPE plastic bottles whose necks are narrower than their bodies are all recyclable; yard waste and food scraps have their own collection.

So if you know you're putting recyclables in the trash, you've got a motivation to stop -- if you can decrease your total garbage output from 64 down to 45 gallons, or 45 to 13, you'll save $40 or $54 a quarter, respectively. Hundreds of dollars a year, either way.

Be sure to check with your local municpality for relevant rules and regulations -- there may not be anything that will help immediately, but it's still worth understanding the details.

Coming next: one of our techniques to generate less trash.

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