How we got into downsizing and debt free living (VIDEO)

Published On August 1, 2015 | By Morten Storgaard | Debt free living

How we got into downsizing:

We will start putting up weekly videos from our story and what we learn.

This is the first of those videos, where we talk about how we initially got hooked on the idea of a simple life without debt and with geographical independence.

You can also subscribe to these videos on our Youtube channel.

Hi guys we want to start sharing more on video our experiences with downsizing and simplifying our lives, because it is something that we really believe in.

– Finding the core values in your life is really really powerful, and we just hope that by us sharing our journey, that we can help you in your process and maybe inspire a little bit.

– We studied and worked like other people, but we were really antsy to start our own business. So I (Morten) started a company with two partners in early 2008, just when the crisis and the bubble and all that stuff going on.

So it was not really a good time to start a business

I (Maria) joined in a year later and we found out that we actually work really well together we also learned that having employees and all the management that come with that wasn’t exactly our cup of tea.

– We started the company to gain more freedom in our life, but we were not feeling that freedom. it was mostly long hours and lots and lots of responsibility and so on.

We also found out that business partnerships can be tricky, because you might want to do one thing and take the company in a certain direction, but then a partner wants to do something else.

– There can be differences of opinion on ethical choices or other stuff. We were only 23 and 25 when we started the company, so we kind of just grew up with the company, and learned more about how we wanted to do things.

Due to the crazy hours in the company I (Maria) burned out, and I really wanted to make some changes.

I kept having this voice in my head saying: “Keep It Simple”, “Keep it simple” the whole time over and over again, and eventually I listened.

Since I was too tired to do anything, I spent a lot of time on Youtube, and I was watching this series called Small Spaces Big Style.

– I always loved tiny spaces even when I started to become an architect, because I think the challenge is amazing, and then in one episode there is this interview with Jay Shafer, living in a tiny little house on wheels, and i got so intrigued.

– I googled him and found another video by Kirsten Dirksen. I was hooked immediately.

– At first I (Morten) didn’t really get it I didn’t understand why would you live in a tiny space, if you can live in a big space, but I think what eventually got me hooked was the financial part to it, because we worked up quite a lot of debt from the company.

We needed that to go away, because we wanted to start something new.

So getting rid of the debt and the whole financial aspect of downsizing really caught on to me.

We started looking at what was important to us as a couple, and over a period of a year I think we defined our top 3 priorities.

Which are:

#1: Financial freedom – including being debt free.

#2: Geographical Independence

#3: Time – we wanted more time in our lives
So in order to get our finances under control we decided to rent out two rooms in our apartment here, so we went from four rooms to two rooms and from a thousand sq.ft. to around 500 sq.ft.

We started downsizing everything we got rid of furniture, kitchen appliances, toiletries and clothes.

We went through everything we donated a ton of stuff, and we sold a lot and we actually made a lot more money, than we thought we were expecting to be able to.

– You will be surprised what people want to buy

That really helped in paying off our debt

– I (Morten) did the 100 thing challenge where you commit to only own a hundred things for a year and I (Maria) did the project 333, to downsize my wardrobe which was really helpful and fun.

See more about these challenges here:

100 thing challenge post

Project 3-33 (downsize your wardrobe to 33 items)

– We decided to get out of the company, and I think the whole process took a full year, and it was a very exhausting time, because we like to startup things, and we are not big fans of shutting down things.

Things didn’t happen or change over night

Four years ago we started paying off our debt, and we just finished our bank loans in December, and we now working on our student loans, which we hope to be done with in a few months.

That will be the first time, that we are actually debt free in a long time.

I don’t even remember what it feels like.

– So now we work together, and we spend as much time together, as we can. We travel as much as our budget will allow, and we still rent out two rooms in the apartment, to keep the expenses down.

We are not perfect in any way, and our journey has had plenty of ups and downs.

We will try to have a new video up every week and share the process we are going through with you guys

So be sure to subscribe if you want the videos:

Subscribe to our Youtube Channel here

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  • Awesome video! Thanks for sharing and being honest :-)

  • Inspiring and great to hear your story! I have been through the same proces in relation to making priorities and realising what actually gives you the true pleasure and value in life – liberating and absolutely fantastic to do!

    • Good to hear @larsvejen:disqus It means a lot to be able to define what to focus on in life!