Tiny houses became increasingly popular over the last few years.
Although living in a tiny home comes with pros and cons, the concept of extreme downsizing sounds appealing to many.
Minimalism went from ‘trend’ to a real lifestyle choice, which makes many people want to join the tiny house movement.
Typical miniature homes are smaller than 400 sq. ft. (that’s less than 40 sq. mt.) and come in so many interesting shapes! In fact, building and designing your own home is quite popular among owners.
However, certain disadvantages make living in a tiny house quite difficult.
Should you avoid a 30 year mortgage and buy a tiny home for a fraction of the price?
Can you really save money by living on less square footage?
Is it smarter to get an RV instead of a tiny house on wheels?
So many questions orbit around the concept of a tiny home.
Understanding the advantages and disadvantages that come with the choice could help you make an informed decision. Or at least think twice before you say ‘yes’ or ‘no’ to living almost like a Lord of the Ring.
Living in a tiny house
Advantages of living in a tiny house
Buying a tiny home is cheap – Instead of paying an average of $200,000 on a house, you can have your own home for less than $30,000. Considerably smaller in size, a tiny home is actually really cheap, compared to a ‘normal sized’ one.
Easier to clean and maintain – Thanks to it’s small footage, a tiny home is definitely easier to clean, even when you do your periodical thorough cleaning! Maintaining it clean and in good shape is also easier, compared to a huge home.
Tiny houses are easily customizable – Although you can customize a bigger house as well, tiny homes are easier to modify / build and it may even cost less to finish the work. The joke earlier, about living like a hobbit, wasn’t meant to be offensive. On the contrary! Tiny homes can be so beautiful and cozy, you’d feel like you’re living in a fairytale!
Perfect for minimalists – If you don’t have a lot of “stuff” and chose to go back to the basics, then tiny homes are perfect to help you maintain a minimalist lifestyle. A big house is easier to fill with clutter. You won’t be able to do that in a tiny home because… where would you put it?
You can fit a lot into a tiny home – Contrary to the perk described just earlier, by installing shelves all over the walls you can actually fit a lot more into a tiny home than you might think. Using chairs with built in storage is also a way to stash some stuff away that wouldn’t fit elsewhere in your tiny house.
Travelling is easier if your home is on wheels – Love travelling? Well, then a tiny home on wheels could be perfect if you love to be on the road. You won’t need to pack only your necessities. You can literally take the whole house with you and tour the country like a boss!
Tiny homes are more energy efficient – Since the space is smaller, it takes less energy to heat a home or cool it during summer. This translates into even more savings, not to mention the environment will thank you!
Disadvantages of living in a tiny house
You’d have to buy land or find a place to ‘put’ it – Building your home for such a low price is great and all, but where would your physical address be? You’d either have to buy land or live in an RV park if you’re not travelling full time.
Possible problems with the law – It may be illegal to live on such small square footage in your area. Especially if you don’t live alone. Before jumping head first, check with the local regulations to make sure you won’t get in trouble with the law.
Increased car expenses if you travel a lot – In order to move your home from point A to point B, you’d need a serious car! And big cars cost a lot. Maintenance adds up as well. And gas. And insurance.
Tiny spaces can get annoying – We personally live in a 400 sq.ft. apartment. It’s small, but we don’t actually need that much space anyway. However, having company is not always fun, we lack the space to entertain. Also, exercising indoors can get weird when you’re trying hard not to knock the TV on the floor!
Raising kids in a tiny home is impossible – Well, maybe it’s not impossible, but it sure can be difficult, especially if you plan on having more than 1 child. While the kids are young, everyone can make compromises. But when they start to grow up, they’re gonna need some privacy and a tiny home doesn’t offer much of it.
Buying items in bulk becomes difficult – Since you have a tiny storage space, buying in bulk can be difficult. Say you want to buy some produce on sale, because it’s in season. Where would you store it? Or a month’s supply of toilet paper and towels? Hmm.. You’d have to run to the store more often!
Tiny homes are often more work – Since you have to move your tiny stuff around in order to access your high shelves or let your table down (then hang it back up on a wall), tiny homes are actually more work than ‘regular’ ones. It can become uncomfortable to not have immediate access to basic things, like sitting down at the table and eat.
Although clearly not for everyone, tiny living can be an overall great experience.
I’m actually fascinated by minimalism and, even though we don’t actually own a tiny house, I like to think living in a tiny apartment is, somehow, the next best thing.
Tiny houses can get crowded, but if you’re smart about using your available space, you can actually build yourself a cozy environment to live in.
Surely, the downsides can be a decisive factor for many. The above cons, plus claustrophobia or other deal-breakers shouldn’t be overlooked when deciding on where you’d want to live for the next few years.
If you do ponder the idea of downsizing to a tiny house, the good news is there are tons of resources to find online about how to build one and how to customize it to fit your personal needs.
Have you ever thought about living in a tiny home?
If you had the chance to move into one, would you take it?