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When I was in college, saving money was almost as important as getting my degree was. My roommates and I learned several tricks on how to keep our rental house liveable. One of the things we used to get rid of foul odors in the kitchen, without spending a fortune on harsh cleaning agents was to grind up cottonwood leaves in the garbage disposal for about ten minutes. The tannin in the leaves emit a spicy aroma and with added water into the disposal, the stench was gone within a couple hours. If you live in the arid parts of the west, sagebrush also works well.

Dried spearmint leaves act as a great air freshener. Collect the plants where they grow, usually near a year-round water source. Snip them off at their lower stems. Bundle a dozen or so with a rubber band or a twisty. Hand the clump near an open window to dry and to let the air flow through and carry the minty scent into the house.

Have problems with ants? Tree sap works well. Collect the sticky substance from the trees in your neck of the woods with a plastic knife and drain into a tinfoil dish. Depending on preferred thickness, place the sap over a pot of boiling water to loosen the sap. This makes it easier to spread and it will stretch farther and last longer.Pour the sap into smaller dishes and keep near entry ways on the floor. The little varments will get stuck in your safe little traps.