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How Renters Can Go Green: A Beginner’s Guide to Composting

A woman putting organic waste into a compost bin. Composting is an accessible and effective practice that can be embraced by everyone, no matter their living circumstances. As an alternative to letting organic waste decompose in landfills and create methane, we can compost food scraps and yard trimmings to produce nutrient-rich soil for plants.

Choose Your Composting Method

Before you begin, reflect on which composting method works best for your living situation. For renters, having enough space and convenience are typically key considerations. Favorably, there are numerous choices available:

  • Outdoor compost bin: If you have access to outdoor space, it might be worth considering investing in a compost bin or tumbler. These are available in a range of sizes and styles to suit your requirements and aesthetic tastes.
  • Indoor composting: Not fortunate enough to have a backyard? Not a problem! Indoor composting systems, such as worm bins or countertop composters, are suitable for individuals living in apartments or those with limited outdoor space. They are small, do not produce any smell, and are simple to take care of.

Find the Perfect Spot

Opt for a spot that receives partial sunlight and has adequate drainage for outdoor bins. It is advisable not to position it directly against your home or close to delicate areas like water sources.

If you choose indoor composting, search for a convenient spot in your kitchen or utility area. Keep in mind the importance of accessibility and ventilation to ensure your composting system stays healthy and odor-free.

Gather Your Materials

You’ll need a mixture of “greens” (nitrogen-rich materials such as fruit and vegetable scraps) and “browns” (carbon-rich materials like dried leaves or newspaper). Aim for around 1 part greens to 1 part browns to sustain a balanced compost pile.

What Can and Cannot Be Composted

Compostable Materials: Yes, Please!

  • Fruit and vegetable scraps
  • Coffee grounds and filters
  • Eggshells
  • Yard waste (grass clippings, leaves, etc.)
  • Shredded paper or cardboard (in moderation)

These materials will break down over time, adding valuable nutrients to your compost pile and helping to create nutrient-rich soil for your plants.

Non-Compostable Materials: Keep Out!

  • Meat and dairy products
  • Greasy or oily foods
  • Pet waste
  • Diseased plants or weeds
  • Plastic or metal

These items can attract pests, produce offensive odors, or introduce harmful organisms into your compost pile. It is beneficial to consider alternative methods for getting rid of them, like recycling or regular trash collection.

Maintaining Your Compost

Turn, Turn, Turn: Consistently turning your compost pile aids in aerating and speeding up decomposition. Strive to turn your pile every week or two using a pitchfork or shovel.

Monitor Moisture: Your compost pile should feel like a damp sponge – not too dry or wet. If it’s too dry, add water; if it’s too wet, incorporate more browns to soak up the extra liquid.

Indoor Composting Methods for Renters

Limited outdoor area? No problem! Indoor composting methods are ideal for renters who prefer to reduce waste without sacrificing convenience.

  • Worm Bins: Vermicomposting, also known as composting with worms, offers a compact and odor-free method to compost indoors. Add your food scraps to the bin and allow the worms to take care of the rest. Moreover, worm castings are a fantastic fertilizer for houseplants!
  • Countertop Composters: Countertop composters offer a convenient solution for individuals with restricted space. These compact containers are designed to sit perfectly on your kitchen counter and utilize aerobic composting to decompose food scraps swiftly and efficiently.

By utilizing these indoor composting methods, renters can seamlessly incorporate composting into their everyday schedules and positively impact the environment from the comfort of their homes.

Benefits for Rental Properties

Are you aware that composting can benefit renters and the rental property itself? Encouraging composting at your rental property can help establish a more environmentally conscious and appealing living space for your tenants. Here are several ways composting can improve your rental property:

  • Improved Soil Quality: In properties with yards, compost adds essential nutrients to the soil, supporting healthier plant growth and elevating landscaping aesthetics.
  • Reduced Waste Management Costs: Composting can help reduce waste management costs for rental properties by removing organic waste from landfills.
  • Enhanced Community Engagement: Composting initiatives in multi-unit housing complexes can help build a sense of community among tenants and exhibit the property’s obligation to the environment.

Cheers, you’re now a composting expert! By following the simple suggestions in this article, you’ve taken a major stride in reducing waste, supporting the environment, and improving the soil quality of your plants.


Whether you’re composting in a backyard or a high-rise apartment, there’s a suitable approach. Well, what’s holding you back? Get your compost bin ready and begin transforming kitchen scraps into garden gold today!

Are you prepared to move forward in your quest for sustainable living? Interact with Real Property Management Vision for all your rental necessities. Our selection of rental properties in the Glendale area and beyond is quite varied. Contact us today through our online platform or browse our available rental listings to discover a perfect home and begin composting in your very own space!

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