Downsizing offers a whole host of benefits. Combining the freedom to hop from place to place with the added benefit of financial ease, downsizing is becoming more popular for a good reason!
Material possessions tend to be more stressful than good for the wanderer’s soul, so downsizing can help you branch out and do more things with your life!
Here are the top ten benefits you’ll be able to take advantage of once you begin to downsize.
1. You Get More Time to Do The Things You Love
A smaller home means you’ll have a lot less to deal with.
Some of these things might include:
- Doing Yard Work
- Doing Maintenance Tasks
One of my favorite parts of the book Walden was when Henry David Thoreau threw out a small statue on his desk because he got tired of dusting it. This really stood out to me as I realized how much time and effort I spent each week dusting my home’s baseboards and removing cobwebs from the corners of unused rooms.
Every square foot of downsizing that you do removes a square foot of weekly or daily cleaning. The time you used to invest into this cleaning can now be invested in doing something you love.
A smaller home simply can’t hold as much stuff as a larger one can. On the surface, this might seem like a bad thing. However, most downsizers find that many of the items in their homes don’t actually serve any purpose. Instead of enjoying these items, they often spend their days organizing them, or worse yet – looking for them. It’s so hard to keep a big house organized, and you can easily lose an entire day each week just moving your stuff around!
Not only this, but smaller homes don’t need as much stuff. For example, a large home with a large driveway might necessitate the need for a leaf blower and a snowblower. When you move to a smaller home, a rake and a shovel might suffice.
Doing Yard Work
While we’re on the topic of leaf blowers, it should be noted that large homes often have large yards that require a lot of work. A ten-acre estate might seem great on the surface, but how long would it take to mow the grass on an estate of that size?
Also, how large and expensive would the lawn mower have to be? It’s hard to enjoy a large yard when you spend all of your free time mowing it.
Instead, living small means, you could have a new backyard every month – or even every week! Parking your Tiny Home or RV in national parks or the great outdoors means that your backyard is our own mother earth!
People who have never owned homes are often surprised by how much time, effort, and money it takes to maintain them. Roofs eventually degrade, exterior cladding begins to fall apart, and sidewalks settle and crack. Fail to take care of these things promptly, and you could end up with leaks and lawsuits.
With a smaller home, you’ll still have maintenance to deal with. However, these maintenance issues will be smaller. You’ll have less work to do, and the number of materials you’ll have to buy will be fewer than if you had a larger home to buy for.
Not only this, but with a smaller home, you may be able to pay someone to do repairs that you otherwise would have had to do yourself. What this means is that you’ll have more time, and you won’t have to invest as much money into buying tools.
2. You Get To Retire Earlier
One of the biggest reasons people downsize is to enjoy the financial benefits that downsizing has to offer. In many cases, downsizers will use the extra money to upgrade the type of home they have, to eat out more, or to travel. But have you ever thought of how much quicker you could retire after you downsize?
With a smaller home, you could have a smaller mortgage payment, lower taxes, lower insurance costs, lower maintenance bills, and lower utility bills. Not only will you have more money to save for a quicker retirement, but you also won’t need to save as much money to meet your retirement goals.
3. It Becomes Easier to Be Mobile
Moving should be fun and exciting. Unfortunately, for most people, it is both difficult and stressful to move. The main reason for this is that most people have a lot of stuff to move. Not only does this make the logistics of moving tough, but it also makes moving extremely time-consuming and costly.
For this reason, many people continue to work at jobs they hate or to live in neighborhoods they don’t like just to avoid moving. After you’ve downsized, you won’t have this problem. In fact, the more you downsize, the more mobile you’ll become.
4. Your Hobbies Become More Fun
People tend to enjoy hobbies that they’re engaged in and that they’re good at. Unfortunately, many of us don’t actually get to engage in our hobbies. Instead, we buy the necessary equipment for the hobby and then put it on a shelf as a testament to our interest in the hobby. With a limited amount of time, we just never seem to get to use our new equipment.
Eventually, we lose interest in even trying and instead, we buy some new equipment for a new hobby we think we’d be interested in. After years of doing this, we have a large pile of equipment that we don’t even know how to use.
Downsize, and you’ll have more time to engage in your hobbies. Not only this, but you just won’t have enough space to buy equipment for a bunch of different hobbies. Instead, you’ll buy just enough equipment to engage in one hobby that you can devote time to getting really good at.
5. You’ll Get to Spend More Time with Your Family
Have you ever noticed that people who live in smaller homes tend to spend more time with each other? With a limited amount of space, people are simply forced to. The upside to this is that these people get to know one another much better. Families become closer, and roommates become good friends. In the end, the smaller space becomes a blessing rather than an inconvenience.
6. It Becomes Easier to Get Rid of Stuff You Don’t Want
In the past, I collected a lot of sentimental items that I eventually didn’t need anymore but just couldn’t bring myself to get rid of. They may have been gifts from deceased relatives or just things I’d had for so long that I became attached to them. You may have experienced something similar in your life as well.
Luckily, there is one easy way to rid yourself of these items. Move to a smaller space, and by necessity, you’ll have to get rid of them. You won’t feel so bad getting rid of them because it’s something you simply had to do.
7. You Can Live in a More Expensive Neighborhood
Have you ever dreamed of living in a neighborhood that was just too expensive for you? If so, you may find that downsizing gives you the ability to do so. The five-bedroom home in this neighborhood might have been too costly, but the two-bedroom condo might not be.
Downsizing to a smaller home or a different kind of home can often save you hundreds of thousands of dollars on a loan. On top of this, you’ll have extra money in your budget as you won’t be paying as much to maintain, to heat, or to cool your smaller home.
8. Your Home Becomes More Accessible
If you’re older or disabled, you may find a smaller home is actually a larger one. Imagine being restricted to a wheelchair while living in a three-story home with a basement. Each floor may have two or three rooms on it, but you’ll only be able to access the three on the first floor.
In this case, you could move to a smaller ranch home and still have more usable space than you had in the larger one. With the ability to access all of the rooms in the home, you could end up with hundreds of extra usable square footage in a home that is actually thousands of square feet smaller.
9. Your Carbon Footprint Becomes Smaller
For those of you that are interested in helping the environment, moving to a smaller space is the easiest way to do so. Smaller spaces use much less energy and have a much smaller impact on the environment. You won’t have to take any extra steps to go green in your new home as your new home will already be green by its very nature.
10. You’ll Have More Control of Your Home’s Climate
Speaking of energy usage, a smaller home is almost always more comfortable to live in. The reason for this is that it’s easier to heat, to cool, and to keep at pleasant humidity levels. There are a couple of different reasons for this.
Ironically, the primary reason for this is often the cost associated with heating and cooling a large home. Many people buy large homes as a status symbol and then find that they can’t even afford to keep them warm in the winter.
The second reason for this is that it simply takes less time to heat or cool a small home. This increased heating and cooling speed means that quick temperature changes outside can quickly be dealt with inside.
Downsizing offers many benefits to the people that decide to do so. Why not downsize yourself and take advantage of these benefits?
You’ll be glad you did.
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Morten is the founder of GoDownsize. He has filmed and interviewed people living in tiny houses and RVs since 2011. He grew up on the coast where his dad took him boating from a young age. He has completely rebuilt two RVs in which he travels with his family for months at the time. Read more about Morten here.