With the tiny home movement in full swing, many people are downsizing their homes to something much smaller. City dwellers are trading living space for location and convenience. With home taxes, insurance, utility and upkeep costs rising every day, you may end up asking yourself if you really need all the space you now have to live comfortably.
Determining Your Space Requirements
How much space you need depends in great part on your lifestyle. If you entertain a lot, you may need more living space, but be able to make do with smaller bedrooms. If you often have overnight guests, you may need at least one spare bedroom. If you are a young person just starting out and living alone, you may be comfortable in a small studio.
Getting Rid of Your “Stuff”
This is the hardest part of downsizing your home. The method experts recommend is to have four bins marked Keep, Donate, Sell and Trash. Once something goes into the bin, it can’t be taken out. When the Keep bin is full, go back through it and reassign any articles you can to other bins.
Instead of saving all those little gifts your kids made for you, take pictures of them and put those pictures into an album online so it takes up no space in your new place. Set particularly sentimental items aside and decide later. There will be some things you simply cannot part with, and that’s fine. A good trick is to ask “Where will this go in my new home?”
Learning to Organize
A small space needs much more organization. You need to find creative ways to store items, and may find yourself having to let go of more once you move in. Store things under beds, on the back of closet and cabinet doors, and anywhere else you can find. Use sites like Pinterest for great small space organizing ideas.
The First Small Space Rule: Go Up!
Loft beds are popular for small spaces, because they leave space underneath for other purposes. Floor-to-ceiling bookcases are useful, as are baskets to utilize spaces like the top of kitchen cabinets. You’ll be surprised how much space you find once you start looking above your head.
Downsizing to a smaller home is a big adjustment, and requires lifestyle changes. It’s well worth it when you think of the money, time and energy you save. Add that you are using fewer resources, and you have a win-win situation.
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I live in a small condo (495 sq feet). I am actively working on de-cluttering and keeping my space as organized as possible. It’s an ongoing challenge, but very rewarding.
It is pretty awesome when you have gone through it all and thrown away everything you don’t need. I just stock back up quickly…
Tony Khuon says
Junk expands to fill the space available in your home for it. That’s why I personally love living in a smaller space–it forces you to be more disciplined about what you accumulate, practically without thinking. I keep a box near the door marked for Goodwill to keep me honest. Thanks for the post!
I love small spaces too. Makes life so much easier and lighter when you own less.