Eco Home in the City

If you read the last post you know Tyler and I have embarked on the great adventure of home ownership. Being an environmentalist I of course have a desire to live in the mountains in a completely green home. Yes, I fantasize about green architecture. I can daydream all day about how wonderful it would feel to live in a home that is off the grid and self sustained. A home that creates it’s own energy, is made from recycled materials, is furnished with organic, sustainably harvested and fair trade items. My dream home would also have a big garden, where I would grow an abundance of organic veggies and have access to open space that I can hike and spend plenty of time in nature. My green home list seriously goes on and on but I think you get the point ;)

Since going off the grid was not in our cards right now, I started to think what really makes a home green? Yes all the things listed above but really one of the greenest things I can do is choose to live in the city. An eco-lifestyle is not only about having and using “green” products but about reusing, recycling, living simply, making choices that cause less pollution, living healthier and happier lives.


Our home although new to us is 90 years old, it was built in 1924, is a small 2 bedroom (700 sq. ft.) and in a very walkable neighborhood. It’s a little hard for our family to understand why we didn’t buy a newer, bigger home for the same price out in the suburbs of San Diego but to us our little craftsmen style home is perfect and just what we were hoping for. Living in a small place not only lessens your physical *ecological footprint but it also reduces the amount of waste produced, products needed for the home, the amount of energy and water needed for your household, it’s also a wonderful physical reminder that we don’t need a lot of “stuff” because frankly there just isn’t the space for it.


There are also countless eco benefits of living in the city that range from walkability (which was one of the main reasons for us) to a greater sense of community. Being able to walk to the grocery store, local restaurants, bars, yoga studios, farmers markets, entertainment centers, parks, etc; lessens our impact on the environment by not needing to drive everywhere. Walkability also increases our health by walking way more and reduces the stress of driving and having to find parking. Some of the other perks of city living are; new land is not needing to be developed, shorter commutes cut down on pollution, better access to public transit and the money you spend stays in your neighborhood. Owning this home is going to be a wonderful adventure in navigating an urban environmentalist lifestyle and I hope you will stick around to contribute your ideas and learn from mine. I have already begun working on a long list of “green” improvements to make to our new home. I’m going to love sharing them with you all and hope it will inspire you if you rent or own. Greening our living spaces is key to enjoying and loving our guilt free eco lifestyle.

What are your thoughts about city living?




*If you have never calculated your ecological footprint I totally recommend giving it a try. It’s a BIG eye opener.


7 thoughts on “Eco Home in the City

  1. OMG! Just saw this post – congrats, Alyson!! I feel you on the “so many projects it can be overwhelming” front. That’s totally how we feel these days! We HAVE managed to get a small garden going and are about to start harvesting all of our lettuces and kale – salad week(s) ahead! But even our yard can be a huge challenge. For instance, what to do about a gopher who is eating up your yard when you don’t want to poison it with foul chemicals? Always something new, right?? Yay for this new adventure of yours!! xoxo

    1. Thanks Aubrey we are really excited and at times overwhelmed. I’m looking forward to next spring and being able to start a garden of my own too. That is so awesome that yours will be feeding you all for the weeks to come. You are living the dream girl! Maybe try gopher traps…yikes! I’m not really to sure. They would erase the need for chemicals. Good luck with that. Let me know if you come up with a solution.

  2. Congratulations! Such awesome news, and I love all the reasons you chose it for your new home. They’re at the top of the list for my next home too–maybe I’ll become your neighbor! ;) Seriously, though, reading about it made me miss the 1928 craftsman duplex I used to live in near downtown Phoenix. It really was a well-made home. I can’t wait to read all about the updates you make!

    1. Thank you so much Natalie that is so kind! I think you would love San Diego theres lots of fun fashion plus it would be awesome to go on coffee dates together. That duplex sounds so cool. I love all the built in’s that come with a craftsman style home, they make each place super unique and super helpful with storage, win win!

      1. Coffee dates would be SO much fun!! I have been to San Diego a few times and I like it more with each visit. Checked out a cute vintage store last time I was there. And yes, I do miss my built in storage. :(

  3. Hello!

    Your home is so beautiful. Great colors and love the style! I had to first say congratulations and also make a comments about green living. I have totally noticed a HUGE difference in the way I live now that I live in a city. My ecological footprint has become so much lower now that I am in Seattle. I am fortunate enough to live close to a lot of cool places to eat and drink (there is actually a somewhat popular pub crawl in my neighborhood now with all of the microbreweries). I am also in a city that is leaning toward the green living stuff. Composting bins are actually required by law for houses and apartments (provided and collected by the city). I ride the bus and don’t drive very far (still working on the whole not driving thing). In fact, I think I drive about 15 miles a week at most. Compared to my Southern California days and WOW has my footprint changed. Anyway, I read that city living is technically the greenest way of living for large groups of people, which I find intriguing and in my case very true. I still want to see hanging gardens from peoples windows though!

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