Downsizing from big houses to smaller homes is a trend that is growing in popularity worldwide right now. There are multitudes of reasons why people are choosing to downsize, and maybe you’ve been considering it as well. In this post we’ll be looking at 8 great reasons to downsize your home and why it’s such a popular option in the modern world.
Before we get right into things, did you know that up until about 100 years or so ago, just about everybody lived in small houses. There have always been large homes, but the majority of the population, all around the globe, lived in smaller dwellings.
It’s really only been in recent times that the human race has decided they want more space, with everyday houses getting bigger and more grandiose.
Well, that’s all reversing now, at least within some sections of the community, and here are some key reasons why in no particular order.
#1 – All the Kids Have Moved Out
When people start a family it’s usually the case that they outgrow their current home and need to move into something bigger, with more space and more bedrooms. As the family grows, so does the size of the house you need.
The obvious reversal of this scenario is when all the kids grow up and move out of the house. It seems like all of a sudden you’re left with one humungous empty space.
While space can be great, an empty house can have a kind of depressing feel to it and no longer gives you that warm and fuzzy, cozy vibe. In fact, really big houses can feel almost abandoned when most of the bedrooms are empty.
If it’s now just you and your partner in a four or five bedroom, three bathroom, two living room home, it’s definitely going to feel like overkill.
Now you don’t have to move into a tiny home necessarily, but you’ll almost definitely want something smaller and more manageable if there’s just the two of you.
#2 – Big Homes Are Too Much Maintenance
A big home may or may not have a big yard to match, but if it has, then you’ve got double the workload when it comes to regular cleaning and maintenance.
Likely your big home has a big kitchen which obviously needs to be kept clean and hygienic. Possibly there are at least several bathrooms, and it’s the same deal with them. Then there are the living areas, maybe a cinema room, dining area, hallways and all the bedrooms to keep clean.
Outside the house are lawns to mow, gardens to tend to, weeding, fertilising, possible regular pool maintenance if you have a swimming pool.
The list goes on.
You find yourself spending every weekend devoted to the upkeep of your house, rather than getting out there and having a life outside of the home and work place.
Many people downsize their homes, even going down to a tiny home, because it frees up so much of your time.
Imagine how quick it would be to clean a house that’s a quarter of the size, and with only a small yard and garden to maintain. You’ll probably actually find yourself enjoying the cleaning and maintenance process because it seems so easy compared to how things used to be.
#3 – Smaller Homes and Tiny Houses Simply Cost Less All Round
You might still owe a large chunk of change on your big home, but if you sell it and buy a much smaller home, you’ll save a ton of money by downsizing and very likely be able to get yourself out of debt. Chances are you’ll have a nice sum of cash left over as well.
This is actually one of the more common reasons why many people are deciding to downsize. They want something cheaper and to be rid of that mortgage hanging over their heads.
Small houses are cheaper to run too. With less rooms there are less lights being used. With less bathrooms there is less hot water being used. Basically you’ll be saving quite a lot on your energy bills. You won’t even need as big a hot water system, which will save even more money on power.
If you’re running your kitchen (and possibly hot water too) on gas, you won’t be going through as much gas in a smaller kitchen and with a downsized hot water service.
Even basic things like mowing a much smaller lawn will save cash on fuel, as well as less wear and tear on the mower itself.
No doubt you’ll be using less water in your smaller home too, so that’s yet another money saver.
It’ll seem like a different world with all this extra money you’ll have at your disposal.
#4 – Downsizing for Retirement
This approach can be 2 fold:
- You no longer need a larger house
- You need the cash to fund your retirement
Likely there are just the two of you by the time you reach retirement age, or you might even be by yourself. It only makes sense to downsize your residence on a whole host of levels.
You no longer need the space, nor the time and energy it consumes to maintain a larger home.
Some people want to downsize and make some cash from the sale to fund their retirement. If you’re no longer going to be working, then you’ll want ready funds on hand to enjoy the rest of your life.
Downsizing might even give you the option of taking an early retirement, which can only be a positive thing.
Also, with a smaller home to maintain and some cash from the sale of the bigger home, you’ll be able to enjoy some travelling if that’s on your bucket list.
#5 – Reducing Your Carbon Footprint and Environmental Impact
There are multiple ways downsizing to a tiny house can help you help the environment and the impact you have on your surroundings.
For starters, tiny houses use a lot less materials to build. That’s less wood and other building materials, less manpower, less machinery and diesel fuel being consumed to get the job done.
Generally small houses will also be on smaller blocks of land, so less land being developed to accommodate tiny houses.
We talked before about using less power, water and gas in a smaller residence, so this helps save the planet as well.
Many people, when they downsize, have the environment in mind and adopt processes to even further reduce their environmental impact. This might include things like running the house entirely on solar power, as there is not as big a requirement for electricity consumption.
Another consideration many people look at or adopt is the use of recycled materials as much as possible, both throughout the construction stage, and for some of the furniture items as well. I’ve seen some pretty cool outdoor furniture, for example, made from recycled wood and other stuff.
A really cool idea – something that is quite popular when people build tiny houses from shipping containers – is to construct a rooftop garden. Now this garden could be a vegetable garden, or simply a decorative garden filled with flowers.
On a flat top roof such as a shipping container, the garden get loads of sunlight and rainwater, but also serves to help insulate the tiny home beneath, again saving the planet be reducing energy consumption.
There are a lot of ways tiny houses can be sustainable and help the world around us.
#6 – A More Simple and Decluttered Lifestyle
Many of us just want to lead a more simple and decluttered lifestyle.
Let’s face it, the more storage space and garage space you have in your house, the more stuff you seem to collect. Often this stuff just becomes unused “junk” in a lot of cases, and takes up space because there is space to fill up.
Forcing yourself to declutter your life by downsizing to a smaller premises also helps declutter your mind. You start to think differently, your mind feels free and clear again, and you begin to appreciate other things in life that are not simply material possessions.
It can be a really mentally and emotionally invigorating process.
This also leads to having more disposable income to spend on getting out and enjoying life’s adventures rather than simply collecting material possessions. And with more time on your hands as well, life will really be looking up.
Although owning stuff is great, life is more about what we do than what we have, and I think a lot of us lose sight of that fact sometimes, when in pursuit of material goods.
#7 – Diversify Your Assets
This is a very good reason to downsize for people looking to own more than one property. Maybe the second property will be an investment property, or you might want to purchase a house or apartment in another location for somewhere to enjoy your vacations and downtime.
When you unload that larger property, you just may find you have enough capital to buy two smaller properties, or at least give yourself more borrowing power to do so.
Diversifying your assets is a safer play anyway. It’s never the best plan to invest all your money into just one thing, just like it’s more financially secure to have more than one income stream.
#8 – More Contentment and Far Less Stress
Downsizing your lifestyle by moving into a smaller home often also means downsizing your stress levels and increasing your contentment. You’ll find yourself naturally focused on other things rather than possessions, maintenance, and constantly having to come up with the money to upkeep a larger home.
Experience serenity and enjoy life like it was meant to be lived, with more peace and harmony and the time and money to do more of what you love.