Before I dive into this next post, I would like to define small as under 1000 square feet. To me, this is more than enough space for our current needs, but I didn’t want to confuse this kind of tiny with the tiny home movement tiny.
I mean, I could see myself living in a tiny house built on a 16 x 8 trailer by myself, but if I had to share that small space between two other humans, I’d probably get cranky real quick. I value my own space. Even I believe there is such a thing as too small.
We live in approximately 980 square feet of awesomeness. To me, this is more than enough space to live. We’re also lucky to have about half an acre of land at our disposal, which we plan on converting to garden space once we solve our water drainage problem. (If anyone has suggestions on doing that, I’m all ears.)
We have a bunch of big, beautiful, and modern looking houses in our neighborhood, and thanks to the local construction business picking up, there are more homes and subdivisions being built. I drive by these all the time for future inspiration because some of these are truly #homegoals.
The one below was built by Black Oak Building Company. If I’m using their photo in my post and gawking at their current projects IRL, then they at least deserve a shoutout here.
But would I want to live long-term in a house over 1200 square foot? Unless I happen to pop out more kids and inherit some secret trust fund I didn’t know about, then no. Not likely.
Am I crazy to want less? Maybe I am. But hear me out – here are my reasons below why a small house isn’t so bad.
1. Easy to maintain and most importantly, CLEAN.
If you hate cleaning, then boy do I have great news for you on this one – less space is less to clean. I know, mind-blowing, right?
I love how fast I can pick up my entire house. I have two small bedrooms, a kitchen, a living room, and a tiny bathroom. The bulk of my space is a neat little rectangle split in half between the living room and kitchen. Even while managing a baby during the cleaning routine in her little sling, it takes me about an hour at most to clean my house. It’s awesome.
Truly, it frees up my time so that I can even have some blog time to write. That to me is worth every penny I have put down in this house so far. If I have more time, then I can do more stuff. I like doing a lot of stuff. I hate cleaning. It works out for me here.
Speaking of stuff, below is my next big point:
2. It prevents overspending and excessive clutter.
Retail therapy would be counterproductive since I have a small house. Where the heck would I put all of my stuff?
I’m already thinking of doing an item purge once it’s time for spring cleaning. Our closet is a mess and is packed full of clothing that my husband doesn’t even wear. It’s not that he wouldn’t wear anything he has in there – the problem is that he can no longer find the clothes he wants to wear because of how much stuff is in there.
We also started to worry once PJ got her own room, it would be filled to the brim with toys that she wouldn’t even get the chance to play with. Fortunately, we haven’t run into this problem yet, but when we do we will start following a simple rule – for every toy in, a toy of equal size goes out.
I think this will be a great way to also teach our daughter how to be happy with less stuff and to think before trying to grab toys at the store when she’s older.
3. Lower energy bills.
Think less space, less _______. Another thing to put in the blank here is utility bills. Who needs more bills in their life? I certainly don’t. I have yet to meet a person who is actually excited about getting bills.
Given the home is well insulated in the winter and the appliances aren’t running 24/7, this is another neat little perk that I have for my house. This also helps prevent shutoffs and financial emergencies when times are a bit lean.
It also tends to leave less of an ecological footprint if you use fewer resources. A big win for me, my wallet, and the environment! What’s not to love about that?
4. Less to furnish, renovate, and repair.
Okay, I’m a Fixer Upper junkie. Joanna is a boss when it comes to interior design and can give anything old a new breath of life in her space.
But when I feel compelled to run to our local thrift and antique stores after binging the previous season on Netflix, I remember that a lot of the look here came from being creative with the old things lying around in the first place. And that it also doesn’t require a lot of stuff to pull the look off.
I do want to renovate our home someday when we get the money for it. Our living room could use an overhaul. It has pink carpet and pink walls. The previous owner had red and black furniture with that. When we saw the listing on Zillow, it looked like something straight out of a bad 80’s movie. Needless to say, I wasn’t a fan.
When the time to renovate comes, it will cost us significantly less to redo things like walls, floors, and fixtures. Basically, there is less to spruce up and fix so it will cost less. And we can take the cost savings a step further by embracing this popular style and using what we have to create some unique pieces to serve us in the years to come.
5. Encourages creativity.
My office is my kitchen. That is surprisingly not detrimental to my weight-loss goals. Unless there is a chocolate cake on display next to me. Y’know, out of sight, out of mind? That’s why I have a bunch of fruit and veggies lying around if I get the munchies. I’m so smart, ha.
This isn’t the only area of the house that has more than one purpose. In order to make the most of our space, almost every area of the house has some sort of clever storage solution to maximize how much space we use. We have drawers in our drawers in our kitchen. I’m not even kidding.
Living in a small space keeps me on my creative toes, trying to figure out what I can get away with when placing furniture and appliances without cluttering the space. If I have to be creative every day in my house, I can use that creative muscle to solve other problems outside my home, too.
Anyone else with me in the small living space boat? What do you like about living small?