You know what they say, “It’s not the size that counts, but what you do with it”.
One of the things I like best about working in Interior Design and Renovation is turning small space into functional AND beautiful space. I don’t think it has to be mutually exclusive. There is nothing more satisfying then finding a way to organize the things we need, and create comfort in a room or a corner that seems challenging for most people to visualize.
Plus, it’s a trend! These day’s in the design world words like “down-size,” right size,” simplify” and “low carbon footprint” are making their way around our stratosphere. From converting walk in closets into home office’s, the 4th small bedroom into a 2nd bath, and creating a more functional kitchen by opening it up into the dining room, or simply building small to begin with…small is in.
Most of us have, and think we need, much more space then we actually use. In our new economy and with the housing meltdown we have been give an invitation (a requirement really) for reinvention in the way we live, and the houses we live in.
But, smaller is not just about economics. Smaller homes are also commonly associated with empty-nesters and retirees looking for smaller spaces after the kids have moved out. And with the sheer number of baby boomers moving through our system now, it is no wonder homes are trending smaller.
Some of the advantages to downsizing or right sizing are:
- More Cash Flow-If you’re spending less on your mortgage payment, you have more money for other things. Not to mention less outlay for help such as cleaning, landscaping and general maintenance.
- More Time-Fewer rooms and smaller spaces cut down on the time need to clean, pick up and maintain as well, leaving more hours in the day to do things we enjoy.
- Lower Bills-It costs a lot less to heat / air-condition a smaller home. And, reducing energy is better for the environment and helps to reduce your carbon footprint.
- Less Consumption-If there is no place to put it, you’re much less likely to buy it. That means less money is spent on clothing, food and consumer goods.
- Less Stress-Less responsibility, smaller workload, increased cash flow and greater flexibility — added together, they all reduce stress.
These days there are many options available if building a small living space…here are three:
- Renovating existing space for use by multiple generations or multiple families, or simply to make what you do have more efficient.
- Pre-fab building of small spaces like the glide house, or even smaller the tumbleweed tiny home and wee house.
- Container homes, either used individually or put together to create the size home you need.
And if you think it can’t be done? Check out the video below. This young man in Hong Kong, took his families 340 sq. foot apartment and turned it into a highly functional, innovative and even beautiful space. Twenty four rooms, or “spaces” are available to him there.
What do you think about small space? Could you see yourself living in a smaller space? Or, making your existing space more efficient, maybe even for more family members? I invite you to leave a comment below, I’d love to hear your thoughts and ideas on this new trend…small!