It seems that may people today are realizing that the old adage “less is more” is actually true. With the prices of homes being sky high, the monthly mortgages that come with them are becoming less of an option. Smaller homes, termed “tiny homes” are much more cost effective for those who are finding their dollar being worth less every day.
Tiny homes are typically 200 to 500 square feet in total, and many are built on trailer chassis with wheels. Many areas will not require a building permit if the home is on wheels and this also is convenient if a person wishes to easily move to another area. Retirees are finding that they can afford to purchase one of these smaller homes outright without the worry of a monthly mortgage. This gives them a peace of mind that they did not otherwise have with their traditional home mortgage, on top of their monthly utility bills and health care costs.
Tiny homes are also found to reduce stress since they are too small to accommodate much clutter and furniture. The furniture typically found in a tiny home is dual purpose, such as tables that can be collapsed against a wall and double as wall art; the artwork is attached to the underside of the table so that when the table is collapsed against the wall the art is visible. Futons that can be utilized as both a couch and a bed, chairs that can be configured puzzle-like into tables, nesting tables that can serve as a desk, end tables or a coffee table are all items that would work well in a tiny home.
Saving money towards an emergency fund or retirement is also easier when living in a smaller home. The monthly costs of utility bills is typically much lower than with a “normal” sized home, and the homeowner will find themselves spending less on unneeded items since there is not much room. It causes one to rethink their way of life; do I really need a mixer, or can I use a spoon to stir that bowl of ingredients? Do I need a special fryer machine, or can I just fill a pot with oil and fry in that? Do I need a bread maker, or can I just make my bread the way Nana used to make it? If you look around your house and do some hard evaluating you may find that many items are not needed, they are actually just clutter.
Learning to live small can have its health benefits as well. Research has shown that clutter can actually raise the stress hormones in the body, and long term stress can actually cause permanent brain damage. Long term stress affects the hippocampus which regulates memory and emotion, and also has been linked to dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.
Even our recreation is turning to smaller alternatives with the resurgence of the teardrop camper trailer. Teardrop campers are so small that some can be towed with a motorcycle. They are a comfortable alternative to sleeping in a tent if you like to experience the great outdoors.
Living small may take some getting used to, but in the long run it can improve an individual’s peace of mind, their health and their bank account. Tiny living can be a win-win situation for everyone.