Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Lowering Rent & Mortgage Payments

We've been 'living small' in less than 300 square feet for over a year and half now. 

I've lived on both ends of the housing market. I've paid high rent & mortgage payments in order to have a larger home and we've lived in older & smaller homes in order to save money. And of course we're living rent free right now.

Our 300 sq. ft. home (bedroom not shown).

Downsizing as radically as we have will not be something that appeals to everyone. Frankly, I can't imagine that we would be living this life if my husband had not become disabled. We did talk about it a lot because of the amount of hours it took to maintain our previous home and questioned if it was the best use of our time and money from an eternal perspective but we just couldn't quite let our hands relax from the grasp of what we owned.  But, now that we're providentially here it seems so natural and so easy and I wonder why we didn't do it sooner.  I guess we've adjusted just fine because my little home actually feels 'spacious'.

  Let's face it. The economy has not snapped back as everyone had hoped. I have several personal friends who's husbands will be losing their jobs and the nightly news has shown thousands out of a home due to flooding back east. Thinking 'outside the American Dream house' could be your ace in the hole if a similar situation comes your way.  Downsizing could be a viable option to an easier life financially or help you fulfill your dreams of being a stay at home mom or ministry.

"Tiny Homes", a new housing alternative!

If you stop to think about it.. the basic function of a home is to protect one from the elements. That goal can be reached in many different ways.  Throughout history people have lived in huts, teepees, tents made from animal hides, homes of all sizes and made from all kinds of material to alternative housing such as boats and RV's. During the depression families even moved in together and that is happening again in our generation due to the burst of the housing bubble and loss of jobs. Also, housing can be obtained in exchange for employment which is what we are currently doing.

Sewer pipes remodeled into hotel rooms in the Dutch town of Vriescheloo.

Exposing my thinking to alternative ways of housing throughout the years has helped me with our transition into 'living small'. I read missionary stories first to my children when they were living at home and I continue that practice for myself to this day. It helps remind me that the majority of the world does not live in homes over 2,000 square feet or even 1,000 sq. ft. ( I've read that before 1970 the average size family home was 1,000 square feet or less. )

Currently I've been spending some time reading about families who live full-time in their RV's. I've been scanning over my belongings to see what I could live without if we chose that option in the future. I know we could do it and thrive (by God's grace!).

I'm sure of it!  (Big Smile)

Does living with less appeal to you?