The trend of living in a small house is becoming more and more relevant as we move forward. As I have stated in my previous post Small House Living, I will attempt to show you the benefits of a small house and what it means to live small.
Small Houses are Clutter-free
When you have limited space you think first and buy later – no more collecting stuff you don’t really need. How many times did you purchase a decorative item for your house like a lamp, side table or large chair only to find out it doesn’t quite complement the decor or space you already have? We all know how much stuff people tend to accumulate in their garage or up in the attic.
Living in a small house can be very comfortable and cozy. However, it is important to plan your living space carefully, letting it flow in all directions while keeping your space well organized and well-lit. A smaller place is easier to take care of, just think about how smooth life could be when all that you need is conveniently close at hand.
A Small House Costs Less
Most people take on a high-interest debt to pay for their new house, working hard most of their lives to pay off a binding mortgage. Well, let me tell you – there is another way. When you build a small house, chances are you’ll live without a huge mortgage hanging around your neck, waiting to be paid off; thus, giving you the chance to live a stress-free life with one less problem to worry about.
Don’t even get me started about the high cost maintenance of a large house; cleaning, heating, cooling and even accessorizing large mansions with huge lawns to maintain – it is just too much. When you live small, your house maintenance costs are small – it’s as simple as that.
Small Houses – Smaller Impact on the Environment
Despite the awareness of today’s harmful building materials; we are still miles away from eliminating the negative impact on our environment. However, by building a small house we can lessens that impact – the smaller the house, the fewer resources are consumed in creating it.
Consider the environmental cost of heating and cooling a house. Burning fossil fuels, either by propane heating or electrical heating and cooling, consumes our planet resources and contributes to carbon dioxide pollution. On the other hand, the smaller the house, the less this cost will be.
Small Houses for a Better Way of Life
A small house will probably have less impact on its surrounding landscape, fitting in nicely with the neighborhood’s trees and open areas, whereas a large, spacious McMansion may seem out of scale and imposing to its surroundings.
In my opinion, small, friendly neighborhoods of smaller-than-conventional homes will become much desirable neighborhoods; the small housing concept will revolutionize the way we live today, giving us a better quality of everyday life.
I believe that already now people are seeking a friendlier, people-oriented way of living based on communities and pedestrian living, closer neighbors, community spaces, open areas and parks – all connected by green pathways and biking trails.
I like the sound of that.
Marcy McInelly, founder of Urbsworks Inc., a Portland based architecture and urban design business, says:
“I think (there are) people who want a smaller place to take care of, a smaller yard, room for a garden, close to neighbors and a detached house, not a row house. The whole key is that you spend less money on square footage and more money on detailing and exterior finishing.”
“People would be able to enjoy a comfortable, walkable, primarily residential neighborhood with a lot of room for gardening … trees that make a canopy over the street … and skinny streets that promote pedestrian travel over motor vehicles.”
Here is an wonderful example of a minimalist development in Langley dubbed The Third Street Cottages by Jim Soules of The Cottage Company LLC in Seattle and partner Ross Chapin of Ross Chapin Architects in Langley.
“I think it’s a significant trend, Soules said. Better rather than bigger, quality over quantity, it’s something people have been waiting for. It takes more work, details and supervision but like the old pre-1940s craftsman homes with mantels and casings they are homes that get a premium price.”
If you’re thinking of building or buying a new home then I hope this post has given you some small house points to consider. Remember, you too can simplify your life by living small while creating a beautiful and functional home that is also compact and environment-friendly.