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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 uncomplicated and beneficial habit that anyone can pick up, no matter where they live. As opposed to letting organic waste decompose in dumps and release methane, we can compost food scraps and yard trimmings to create nutrient-rich soil for plants.

Choose Your Composting Method

Before you jump in, take a moment to factor in which composting method will work best for your living situation. Space and convenience are often the most important things to renters. The good news is that there are several choices:

  • Outdoor compost bin: If you can access outdoor space, you might want to buy a compost bin or tumbler. There are different sizes and types of these, so you can find one that works for you and looks good.
  • Indoor composting: Don’t have a backyard? Not an issue! Indoor composting systems, such as worm bins or countertop composters, are great for people who live in apartments or those with limited outdoor space. They’re small, don’t smell, and are simple to clean.

Find the Perfect Spot

Pick a spot that receives partial sunlight and has excellent drainage for outdoor bins. Don’t put it right up against your house or near sensitive places like water sources.

If you decide on indoor composting, select a convenient spot in your kitchen or utility area. To ensure your composting system stays healthy and free of smells, think about how easy it is to get to and how well it can breathe.

Gather Your Materials

“Greens” (nitrogen-rich materials like fruit and vegetable scraps) and “browns” (carbon-rich materials like dry leaves or newspaper) are what you’ll need. Aim for roughly 1 part greens to 1 part browns to keep 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, providing essential nutrients to your compost pile and assisting in creating 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, make your compost pile smell bad, or bring in pathogens that are dangerous. It’s better to get rid of them in some other way, such as recycling or regular trash collection.

Maintaining Your Compost

Turn, Turn, Turn: Regularly turning your compost pile helps aerate it and speed up decomposition. Aim 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, add more browns to soak up the excess moisture.

Indoor Composting Methods for Renters

Not enough room outside? Not a problem! Renters who want to reduce waste without sacrificing convenience should use indoor composting methods.

  • Worm Bins: Vermicomposting, or composting with worms, is an easy method to compost inside that doesn’t make a mess. Add your food scraps to the bin and let the worms do the remainder. Worm castings are also a great fertilizer for houseplants!
  • Countertop Composters: If you don’t have a lot of room, countertop composters are a good choice. You can put these small bins on your kitchen counter and use aerobic composting to break down food scraps quickly and easily.

With these indoor composting methods, renters are able to incorporate composting into their normal routines and positively impact the environment – right from the comfort of their homes.

Benefits for Rental Properties

Do you realize that composting can benefit renters and the rental property itself? Encouraging composting at your rental property can make it a better place for your tenants to live, which is also better for the environment. Here are some approaches composting can improve your rental property:

  • Improved Soil Quality: For homes with yards, compost adds essential nutrients to the soil, promoting healthier plant growth and enhancing landscaping aesthetics.
  • Reduced Waste Management Costs: Composting can help reduce waste management costs for rental properties by keeping organic waste out of landfills.
  • Enhanced Community Engagement: Composting programs in apartment buildings with multiple units can foster a sense of community among tenants and show that the building is committed to sustainability.

Well done, you’re now a composting pro! By following the simple instructions in these guidelines, you’ve already done a lot to help reduce waste, nourish the environment, and create healthier soil for your plants.


Whether you’re composting in a backyard or a high-rise apartment, there’s always a great way. How long are you going to wait? Grab your compost bin and start turning kitchen scraps into garden gold today!

Ready for the next step in your quest for eco-friendly living? Get in touch with Real Property Management Magic Valley for all your rental needs. We offer a diverse selection of rental properties in and around the Jerome area. Contact us today through our online platform or browse our available rental listings to discover the perfect home and begin composting in your very own space!

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