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Tiny House Tell-All: What’s it Really Like to Live Small?

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4. How to Prepare

Rocky Mountain Tiny Houses

Tiny House in Winter via Rocky Mountain Tiny Houses

If you’re serious about downsizing your life, and swapping your big house for a tiny one, it’s necessary to make some mental and physical preparations.

“Study the way you use your space and write down what you actually need,” Corinne advises. “Also consider closely the costs, and the decline in value over time, to see if it is really a better financial option than buying a small house.”

“No matter how space efficient you are, you simply cannot bring everything with you and you will have to get rid of something that you think you might possibly need or use, Kelly admits. “If you’re not willing to acknowledge that you don’t need everything you have right now, then you’re not ready to live in a tiny space.”

5. Do Your Homework

Jamie Tiny House Adventure

Jamie of Tiny House Adventure

I asked our tiny house experts to share the resources that were most helpful during on their journey. Here’s what they said:

The Humanure Handbook: This book “is fabulous, entertaining, and a must read for designing a non-traditional composting system. [It] really helped me design and build my own system, eventually based off the general model of the ‘Lovable Lou,’” Jamie said.

Corinne says the book “Little House on a Big Planet” helped her study and map her spacial needs, while “Prescriptions for a Healthy House” guided her chemical-free build.

“Read Lina Minard’s account of completing the 200-thing Challenge,” says Greg, “and check out ”Radical Simplicity” by Dan Price.” As an expert, Greg is also available to answer questions via his website.

According to Kelly, some of the best advice and assistance can be found on the internet. She suggests taking a look at Tiny House Swoon (for lots of pictures and inspiration), seeking out online tiny house communities and forums (to create relationships with like-minded people), and starting a personal blog or Facebook page for your tiny house dream. “By posting on our blog and Facebook page we received regular support and assistance while building the bus. This helped motivate us to keep working, even during some significantly challenging times,” Kelly said.

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Lead image via Thinkstock. Tiny house images via Lilah Horwitz/Half Cut Tea, My Chemical Free House, Tiny House Adventures, Rocky Mountain Tiny Houses, and Just Right Bus

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6:48PM PST on Jan 8, 2015

Nice, but as enchanting as the tree tiny house looks I think it might be way too cold to live in during the winter.

12:32PM PST on Dec 11, 2014

A lot of good ideas.

1:56AM PDT on Sep 4, 2014

My idea of small would be in the region of 900-1000 sq ft.

Tiny does not appeal to me under any circumstances because I can't imagine living without books and works of art.

1:06PM PDT on Aug 24, 2014

Just enough for dolls. Or for anteaters. ;-)

8:10PM PDT on Jun 3, 2014

want one

8:09PM PDT on Jun 3, 2014


8:09PM PDT on Jun 3, 2014


8:07PM PDT on Jun 3, 2014


12:52PM PDT on Jun 2, 2014

interesting. I live in a studio; don't think I'd feel ok in anything smaller.

10:57AM PDT on Jun 2, 2014

Thank you

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