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Hedy's Hints: 13 green spring cleaning solutions for a more eco-friendly home

Are you looking to spruce up your new home? Ready to make your home sparkle like a gem in order to place it on the market? Maybe now is the time to consider some environmental friendly and green homemade cleaners to do the job.

There are some great cleansers you can make on your own, in order to avoid the potential hazards to you, your family and pets that most cleaners possess. You won’t even have to make a special trip to the health food store or spend extra on organic cleaning supplies. These cleaning solutions offer little to no fumes, so that you can enjoy the fresh air while cleaning your home.

Here are 13 green cleaning solutions for your home:

1. Glass cleaner: 1/4 cup vinegar, 1 quart of water. Mix in a spray bottle. Tip: Wipe with an old newspaper (yes, newspaper-and get ready to be surprised by how effective it is) or a lint-free cloth instead of paper towels.`

2. Countertop and tile scrub: 2 parts vinegar, 1 part baking soda, 4 parts water. Apply with a sponge, rub, then rinse or wipe clean.

3. Floor cleaner: 4 cups of white distilled vinegar, 1 gallon of hot water. Tip: Add a few drops of peppermint or lemon oil–the vinegar smell will dissipate leaving only the scent of the oils lingering in the air.

4. Wood cleaner and refresher: 1 to 1 olive oil and lemon juice. Dab a small amount on a cloth and apply to the furniture in even strokes.

5. Toilet bowls: Baking soda on a toilet brush is all you need, but occasionally disinfect with borax. Use straight vinegar to wipe down the outside.

6. General disinfectant: 2 teaspoons borax, 4 tablespoons vinegar, 3 cups hot water, 1/4 teaspoon liquid castile soap. Mix in a spray bottle.

7. Mold and mildew remover: Straight vinegar.

8. Air freshener: A few drops of essential oil on a cotton ball hidden in a corner works wonders. Tip: Try lavender in the bedroom, and cinnamon, clove, or citrus oils in other rooms. In the car, try peppermint, which will keep you alert. And remember, most essential oils.

9. Hang dry: You've switched to a natural laundry detergent, but are still using an energy draining dryer? Retractable clotheslines can help you with dry your clothes, while reducing both pollution and your energy bill-not to mention extending the life of clothing.

10. Natural air-purifier: Houseplants are the best air purifiers. The most efficient plants for cleaning your indoor air are spider plants, English ivy, rubber plants and peace lilies.

11. Closet clutter: Box up those sweaters and donate your gently used clothing or items that are no longer in style. You can even consider using your gently used clothing as part of your green cleaning by making it a cleaning rag, thus replacing the use of paper towels. Tip: Replace mothballs with a sock stuffed with cinnamon sticks, bay leaves, and whole cloves tied at the end.

12. Ditch the paper: Save trees, money and landfill space by starting your own rag collection instead of using paper towels. Just cut up old towels, bedding, and ratty t-shirts into handy squares then launder when used-reuse them again and again.

13. Put down the Swiffer: Single use mop heads are expensive and wasteful compared to their green, reusable counterparts. Casabella mop heads can be washed, hung dry and reused over and over.

By taking just a few simple steps, you can make a major impact on your health, the health of others and the environment – all while getting the glowing results you want for your new home or home on the market.

Hedy Goldman has lots of knowledgeable information to share. She has been practicing real estate since 1996 and is a 2010 gold award winner at Windermere Real Estate SoCal. Hedy sells all over San Diego, but specializes in North County Coastal. She can be reached at (858) 504-2334 or San Diego Realtor.