Could you live in a tiny home?
Do you follow the “Tiny Home Movement”? Tiny homes promote a simpler life and with generally less than 46m2 (500 square feet) are so tiny compared to the average American home (247.3 m2 or 2,662 sq ft). For a European, the tiny home movement may not sound that surprising. After all, in many countries, apartments with a size of 60 m2 (646 sq ft) are common. What makes this tiny home movement so special?
TV shows like “Tiny House, Big Living” follow individuals in their downsizing quest. Focusing on what really matters, tiny home owners part from the vast majority of their material possessions. Almost each item in their home has to have dual purpose and there are some nifty ideas. Many use the stairs to the upstairs loft as additional storage space or a wardrobe. One episode showed this table, mounted to the wall, and once hung on the wall again, it serves as a chalk board. Another one airs the couch converting into a guest bed.
Living in an area where bigger is better, I can’t see the tiny home movement catch on here. Many on the US shows praise how living in a tiny home gives them flexibility and they can move from one place to another. In a country, where even in April temperatures can reach 37 C (99 F), I’d like to have some air conditioning if I moved into a tiny home. Proper insulation is a must but even then, how do you get it cooled down during the summer?
My smallest apartment was only 40 m2 (430 sq ft) big. No, it wasn’t my first apartment after university, although that one wasn’t much bigger with the steep roof. This small apartment was my home in London and I was well established in my career. The decision was not driven to lead a simpler life. Having moved from Iowa, I wanted to see big city lights. I wanted to experience life in a city again and being around the corner from Stamford Bridge, Chelsea fans brought life to the area every second weekend!
Moving into the current home, which is 4x the London space, was move # 26 and I’ve learnt to declutter before each move. Yet, I also know that I want to keep certain things, like my grandmother’s china. It was in one of the 25 boxes that came to Dubai with me. While I know that I could part of more things if moving into a tiny home, the question is: Do I want to downsize that much to move into a tiny home?
For me, downsizing is an option. A tiny home as a permanent home is not.
Maybe a tiny home reminds me of a fancy RV and while some people chose that as their home, it’s not for me. A tiny home as a secondary home is a fabulous idea, however, I don’t see that as the objective of the tiny home movement. Tiny homes can serve as a temporary relief just like they did after Hurricane Katrina or for homeless people. I’d like to think that they can do good in regions with less extreme weather conditions.
Maybe I’m admitting here my own ignorance. I enjoy living in brick and mortar buildings, especially since I haven’t moved since 2012! For me, tiny homes are beautiful design inspirations and will definitely come back in handy when moving on from this beloved city.
What about you? Could you live in a tiny home?
Until next time,