Wow! So the last few months have been a whirlwind of transition! We wanted to wait to post this blog until we actually moved, unpacked, and settled in. Here’s the story:
Back in 2014, me and Booth started to pursue tiny house living. We saw this type of housing as a way to reduce overconsumption, live minimally, and reduce our carbon footprint. We started doing research but soon discovered that this would have to wait until we both graduated as most of our money was going toward tuition. We graduated and picked up the idea again, we contacted and met with builders, we applied for the new, up and coming loans, we called bank after bank and every.door.slammed in our face. It turns out that building a house under 500 sq ft that is on wheels poses some very significant challenges with both codes and lenders. After we had Emma we contacted a builder who provided in house financing and we thought it would be a “go” but he required 50% down. So we decided that this family of three was not meant to live in a tiny house.
Fast forward to the end of August 2017. Through mutual connections, we did a property walk with a wonderful family, the Cummings, out in Kingston Springs, TN. They wanted to start a farm and needed some help so we happily agreed to meet. There wasn’t a house on the property and they asked us, “Would you all ever live in a tiny house?” Me and Booth laughed and said “YES!” After jumping through a bunch of hoops with codes, we moved into a Park Model tiny cabin just under 500 sq ft. We will be sharing our experiences with tiny living through this blog and hope that if you’re following our journey you will be encouraged to take a step toward reducing overconsumption.
Is It Hard?
We get this question a lot as a family of three, soon to be four. The answer is sometimes, but not really. We have come to find that not being weighed down by random stuff has given us a sense of freedom, not frustration. It has encouraged creativity and a deeper observation of our place. In a time where our faces are in our phones, we desperately needed to be pushed into becoming alive to all five senses again. Overall we’ve gained things we didn’t really know we had lost, and we awoke from our slumber.
On the practical side, we also decided not to do a lot of built in furniture so we’ve been able to be flexible to see what fits and what doesn’t. In that same regard, the best thing we’ve learned about tiny living so far is that instead of trying to make stuff fit just get rid of it. Trying to find a spot for everything turned out to be annoying and once we got rid of it we felt a lot of freedom. It also helps that this house is on the bigger side of tiny houses. Since it is on the larger side we were able to add tiny conveniences that we did not have in our apartment or throughout our entire relationship. Having a dishwasher and a washer and dryer is completely life changing, and they are both compact appliances that are designed with water/electric saving features in mind. The hardest part has been trash and recycling. We don’t have recycling pick up here and there really isn’t a good way to create a trash system in a tiny house. We welcome any creative ideas on this one!
Quick Tips for Tiny Living
Just get rid of it
Maximize your vertical space
Make compact appliances a priority. Since tiny living can be frustrating at times, give yourself some grace and add convenience where you can.
Avoid built in furniture so you have the flexibility to adjust when you need to
Build a porch… or two… or three… and maximize your outdoor space!
Feel free to email us if you have any questions!