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- Frugal Living
Tiny Homes Add Up To Big Savings
I always like the idea of a tiny house and a lifestyle without so many material possessions. When hurricane Katrina came along in 2005 and effectively wiped out most of what I owned, I had no choice but to live a life with few possessions. So it seemed like an ideal time to try out the concept of living little.
I wasn't interested in having a large or fancy home with the costs of monthly payments, insurance, upkeep, repairs, big electric bills. I didn't want a place that took a long time to clean and keep running smoothly. I just wanted a small place that was easily affordable that would allow me to stay out of the rat race of the city. Once upon a time, I was a teacher in a public school in the big city. The job paid well but it also came with many new expenses for such as a reliable car, gas for the commute, proper clothing, supplies, and on and on. I was exhausted trying to keep up with a house, a job and the expenses that came as a part of both of them.
Katrina came along and gave me a fresh start on a new life, complete with a new fiance and a chance to rebuild our lives together. Our first place together was a tiny 10x20 cabin on a cruise ship that was docked in the city for 6 months, housing first responders and essential personnel that were rebuilding the city. When the ship sailed off 6 months later, we had our palatial FEMA trailer to live in, which was a spacious 10x32. From there, we found a small 2 room apartment (about 400 sq) feet in a safe area with a lovely porch and yard. We were very committed to living small because it made such good sense to us and the way we wanted to live.
Living in a small space with your significant other does take some adjustment and a strong commitment to what you are doing and why you are doing it. Every possession you own has to justify the space that it takes up. There is no place to be a collector or a hoarder. You have to be comfortable in a small space and the lack of privacy that may come with it. It can either make or break a relationship and in our case, it worked wonderfully. We were content with each other's company and our snug little cabin.
The advantages that you gain by downsizing and living little are more than just the obvious financial ones. If you are paying less for living expenses then you have to option to spend that money saved on something that you always wanted to do but couldn't afford. The fact that your living expenses are smaller means that you don;t have to work yourself to death trying to stay ahead financially. You can relax and perhaps consider a career that you love rather than one that pays well.The personal freedom you gain by downsizing is amazing.
One of the most important things is the stress load that is lifted off of you by living small. You no longer have to wonder what you will do if you are laid off or become sick. Your bills will be easily manageable and your future will be more secure. It wont take 2 incomes to support your household. I cannot say enough about how good it feels to know that you are no longer working so hard to support a house and lifestyle that you have no time to enjoy it. You are no longer a slave to your house and your fancy lifestyle, trying to keep up with everything. You are no longer at the mercy of a boss or a job that you aren't crazy about. You have options!
I am so glad that the era of McMansions is fading out and the tiny house movement is gaining popularity. There are an abundance of creative tiny houses and options for living small, right at your fingertips, on the internet. Take the time to type in "tiny houses" in your browser and sit back and be prepared to be awed and enthralled as you realize that the world of tiny houses is bigger than you ever imagined.