Perhaps you have been watching videos of tiny home walkthroughs and marveling at how so many facilities can be fit into such a small space; or, maybe you have always enjoyed the thought of downsizing your belongings and living more economically.
Either way, tiny homes are a popular method of reinventing your life and have been for many years. But do you truly have what it takes to live that way, and most importantly, are you ready for tiny home living?
Read on for 13 key aspects of tiny home living to decide if it is right for you!
1. Adjust Your Mindset
The first step to tiny house living lies in altering your mindset about it. If you want to pursue this lifestyle because it seems cute, convenient, cheap, or easy, rethinking your options might be wise.
Even if you have been camping and loved the feeling of being self-contained in nature, living in a tiny house is not the same as staying in an RV. While it’s more comfortable in some ways, it’s also a full-time commitment instead of a trip.
Tiny house living is not for everyone because it is a demanding lifestyle. But if you can do it, then all the better!
2. Be a Minimalist
Are you a minimalist?
This is an excellent question to ask yourself before going too far down the route of tiny home living—considering the lack of space you will be surrounded with, already following a minimalistic routine will only help you adjust to the lifestyle.
If you are not a minimalist, that’s still okay. It might just be a bigger challenge to downsize your life and fit into the tiny home of your dreams!
3. Avoid Excessive Consumerism
If you plan to transition to the tiny home lifestyle, it’s a good idea to stop buying things sooner than later. This will prevent your small space from becoming instantly cluttered when you move in and help change your habits.
While many people today fall into the trap of excessive consumerism quite quickly, it’s essential to take a step back from it whenever you can and reevaluate your needs versus your wants.
And preparing to move into a tiny house is the perfect opportunity for you to consider your lifestyle and habits in a capitalist world—all those new “must-have” goods that are being advertised won’t fit into your tiny home’s square footage!
4. Start Decluttering ASAP
Decluttering your life can seem daunting when first suggested. Who wants to painstakingly sift through all their belongings, turn out the closets, and check under the beds for things that are no longer needed? But you need to for tiny home living!
Luckily, there is an easy way to declutter. Start going through your things and bring an empty box with you, so if you spot something that you don’t want to get rid you can pop it into the box and put it aside.
Then, once you begin the process of moving, recheck the content of the box. In all likelihood, most of the items inside will no longer be something that you want or need, and you probably have forgotten about some of them entirely!
5. Consider the Climate
Another important aspect of dwelling in a tiny house is the climate where you currently live or foresee yourself living in the future.
For instance, if you live in a cold climate, the long winter months spent cooped up in a small space might not be the best idea for larger families. Or, if you have your eye on a tropical location, ensure your house has proper air cooling for comfort.
6. Review the Costs
Unfortunately, it’s much more expensive than you think to dwell in a tiny home. In fact, the house itself becomes one of the highest costs! You end up paying more per square foot in a small home than you do for a larger house.
This is primarily because of the difficulty of packing everything you need to live comfortably into the small space of a tiny home, where innovative technology and construction methods need to be used and inevitably cost more.
On the bright side, the expenses associated with living in a tiny home are generally less than normal properties, with lowered water, heating, and electricity charges. So, the cost is a bit of a fluctuating financial seesaw, in the end!
7. Define What a Meaningful Space Means to You
Wherever you live now, take a moment and identify which areas of your dwelling are most meaningful to you and why.
It could be the kitchen where you share great meals and conversations with your family or a library where you can retreat and crack open a book.
Now, consider these spaces when it comes to smaller square footage. You might not have the ability to sequester yourself away from everyone else in the family within a tiny home, nor be able to fit a large gathering into its little kitchen.
These are important things to keep in mind. It’s also part of the lifestyle’s core challenges—can you design a tiny home that includes the most essential elements of your meaningful space, and how do you implement it creatively and functionally?
8. Consider Your Family’s Needs
How big is your family? Or, more importantly, who will be living in the tiny home with you? Given their diminutive size and space constraints, tiny homes are not commonly considered the ideal house for a large family.
However, if you and your loved ones agree that the size won’t be a problem, tiny home living can be a great experience for the entire family!
Not only should you consider partners, kids, babies, and even extended family, but also any furry friends that are part of your life. Dogs, cats, and other pets can live in tiny homes, with some exceptions.
Make sure the tiny lifestyle is not unhealthy for your pets—for example, very large dog breeds like Great Danes or Irish Wolfhounds may not appreciate the lack of space as much as a Dachshund or Chihuahua might.
9. Figure Out What Is Really Important in Life
If you and your family are serious about pursuing the tiny home lifestyle, it is time to sit down and reassess what you want out of life.
What are your dreams and goals for the next few years in the future, and how does living in a tiny home assist you in achieving them? What factors are you willing to let go of or come to a compromise on? Figuring out what is essential to you is key.
10. Find a Community
There are plenty of support systems and groups out there for people new to the tiny lifestyle that can help you and extend a warm welcome. Community is always important, and it’s no different for people living in a tiny home.
Check out Facebook groups, tiny home meetups, local housing groups advertised in coffee shops, and more. The more friends you make within the community, the better the tips and tricks you will learn about the lifestyle!
11. Ignore the Critics
As you embark upon this tiny house journey, expect everyone to have an opinion on it—either good or bad. Part of the process is learning how to trust yourself and your decisions while blocking out the naysayers!
If this is the right choice for you and your situation, embrace it fully. And while it might not be a lifestyle that suits you forever, as long as you are happy and healthy at the moment, it’s a good decision.
12. Spend Time in a Tiny Space First
Before making the leap and moving into a tiny home immediately, make sure you spend time in a small space first to make sure it won’t drive you mad!
Airbnb often has rental properties that are quite diminutive and give you a good idea of what this lifestyle might entail, or you can find a friend who has a tiny pod camper and give it a try.
This type of lifestyle is remarkably different from the one that most people are accustomed to in nearly every way, so it’s very important to spend time in a tiny place to ensure this is what you want.
13. Take Tiny Steps to Mentally Prepare
This kind of move is much more intensive than most others. It’s not as simple as bringing your belongings from one property to another—downsizing needs to occur before you can even consider calling your tiny house a home.
You also need to outfit the structure with utility connections, backup generators, spare parts, and other technical considerations to keep everything running, making it a bit more complex than other moves.
However, it’s also one of the most exciting steps you can take. And by first preparing yourself for the transition by decluttering, spending time in a tiny house, and finding friends who pursue the same lifestyle, you can safely take the leap!