Has anyone here downsized into a tiny home (under 1000 square feet)

Youngster

New Member
So would I. We are, no we are not, she is, hinting at downsizing. Look, I know that there's only the two of us, no kids means no grandchildren, but we need a big house. It's not a mansion after all, just a humble pile with five bedrooms, two of which have en suite bathrooms. It has an entrance hall and a gallery landing but hey, come on, it's not that big. OK so it has a double garage and gardens front and rear, so what? I love it, it's just that the stairs have copulated and now they are double the height they were when we moved in, but we still manage to get up them, even if we do have to rope ourselves together in case of a fall. Smaller homes are for height challenged people, we gave up on the idea of a motor home, given that space was so limited. We need to talk my dear!
I think you and my wife would get along nicely.
 

Right Now

Senior Member
Location
upstate New York
When I divorced, I left a spacious home to him, and moved to a 2 bedroom apartment. It was about 960 sq ft. and so easy to keep clean, and comfortable when guests visited. I've had three homes, one with a fully decorated/furnished basement and beauty shop.
There comes a time when downsizing and still meeting your needs is an attractive alternative.
I used to spend my weekends cleaning and keeping a tidy house, then working 40 hours all week. At the time, it seemed the normal, but now....
I like my free time to socialize, read a good book, or do .... not too much. As Goldilocks once said, "This is just the right size"!
 

PCman

New Member
Location
S. W. Florida
My wife and I are thinking about downsizing. I'd like to hear from anyone who has done this into a house under 1000 square feet. I'd like to know the good and bad issues that you've ran into.
In theory this would be a good option for me at 71 and now single. But my 3 bedroom and larger home is still used. I'm a musician so One bedroom is a recording studio, I'm a retired Systems administrator so the other bedroom is a Computer Lab and my 2 car garage filled with my power tools that bring me great joy. I still mow my lawn and do upkeep on my older home built in the 80s but I can see it becoming a burden one of day as I age.
I also live in SW Florida our town was devastated by by hurricane Ian a few months ago, I sustained some $45,000 in damages. Global warming predicts more to come. That alone gives reason to move.
Hopefully one day I meet a partner and can then move forward and get a smaller place to share together. That said small house is fine but very large garage for all my Man Toys. LoL
 

HoneyNut

Senior Member
My wife and I are thinking about downsizing. I'd like to hear from anyone who has done this into a house under 1000 square feet. I'd like to know the good and bad issues that you've ran into.
Well I'm just one person so it is probably different for a couple, but I downsized from a 3 bedroom + 2 bathroom house (+ 2 barns) 10 acre rural property to a 1 bed + 1 bath 965 sq ft condo (with an enclosed sunroom/balcony) in a highrise surrounded by walking paths and a golf course in a retirement community. Also there are assigned storage areas in the basement level, and for people willing to pay more there are also full size room storage areas down there.

For me there are no bad issues only have good issues so far. My house was too much to keep clean and maintained and I actually get just as much walking outdoors now, and it is more pleasant because before most of my walking was behind a fume-producing dust-creating mower or a trimmer, and now I just enjoy nature while I walk (including seeing deer, fox, geese, ducks, squirrels and regular little birds). At my old house the darn gopher things (voles?) ate any flower bulbs I planted, but here I am seeing lots of intriguing green shoots popping up so I expect to enjoy daffodils or hyacinths or something.

Before I had to buy my own tools and worry whether I'd injure myself accidentally and not be able to get help, but here there is a community woodworking shop (I haven't been to it yet, just seen the pictures on the website), and before I had a garden but here I have joined the garden club and rented a nice sized garden plot and there are sheds with shared tools, wheelbarrow, hoses, etc. Before I had to worry about snow removal but now I don't need to do any more shoveling. Before I had to find tradespeople and now I can hire the community ones (or hire outside if I prefer).

And here there are lots of clubs of all sorts of activities that appeal to the range of ages of older people. So I can find stuff to do whenever I can motivate myself enough to do so. And most things are just a ten minute walk away (though a lot of people drive to the clubhouses). And I've seen two trips advertised (bus + package deals for hotels to travel to different states tourist destinations) so maybe I'll join one of those sometime. Oh and a couple nights a week there are activities in the party room in my own building (for when a person is too old or lazy to go to a clubhouse).

I'm finding 965 sq ft a little much, I would be happy with 600 sq ft instead I think. It takes me 30 steps to go from my bedroom window to the kitchen sink (the apartment is laid out in a way that I have to do a lot of S shape walks).
 

Jules

Well-known Member
Location
Beautiful BC
@NorthernLight wrote an excellent summary of things to think about.

If you want to make this your last move, consider location first. What we did easily at 55 isn’t so at 75.

Look at the reality of how you like to live. Do you like lots of cupboards in your kitchen? A huge fridge? W/D on the main floor. Lots and lots of cupboards. What are your hobbies.

What are your bare minimums. 2 beds, 2 baths? Do you need a garage? Do you want to maintain an exterior.
 
My condo has 2 bedrooms so I have a guest room/office because I still do some consulting. I have a small pedal machine for when the weather is too bad to exercise outside. My balcony has a small storage area. I can clean it thoroughly in about 3 hours. I prefer to spend my time having fun instead of cleaning. I have had up 7 people for dinner.
 

SeniorBen

Senior Member
When the day comes when I start having trouble getting around and I can no longer build stuff out in my shop, 1,000 sq ft would be sufficient for my needs. My house is about 1500 sq ft with a finished basement which doubles the size. I have a gym down there and all my guitars and music stuff. The rest is used for storage. I could get rid of most of it and not miss it one bit.
 

Youngster

New Member
Well I'm just one person so it is probably different for a couple, but I downsized from a 3 bedroom + 2 bathroom house (+ 2 barns) 10 acre rural property to a 1 bed + 1 bath 965 sq ft condo (with an enclosed sunroom/balcony) in a highrise surrounded by walking paths and a golf course in a retirement community. Also there are assigned storage areas in the basement level, and for people willing to pay more there are also full size room storage areas down there.

For me there are no bad issues only have good issues so far. My house was too much to keep clean and maintained and I actually get just as much walking outdoors now, and it is more pleasant because before most of my walking was behind a fume-producing dust-creating mower or a trimmer, and now I just enjoy nature while I walk (including seeing deer, fox, geese, ducks, squirrels and regular little birds). At my old house the darn gopher things (voles?) ate any flower bulbs I planted, but here I am seeing lots of intriguing green shoots popping up so I expect to enjoy daffodils or hyacinths or something.

Before I had to buy my own tools and worry whether I'd injure myself accidentally and not be able to get help, but here there is a community woodworking shop (I haven't been to it yet, just seen the pictures on the website), and before I had a garden but here I have joined the garden club and rented a nice sized garden plot and there are sheds with shared tools, wheelbarrow, hoses, etc. Before I had to worry about snow removal but now I don't need to do any more shoveling. Before I had to find tradespeople and now I can hire the community ones (or hire outside if I prefer).

And here there are lots of clubs of all sorts of activities that appeal to the range of ages of older people. So I can find stuff to do whenever I can motivate myself enough to do so. And most things are just a ten minute walk away (though a lot of people drive to the clubhouses). And I've seen two trips advertised (bus + package deals for hotels to travel to different states tourist destinations) so maybe I'll join one of those sometime. Oh and a couple nights a week there are activities in the party room in my own building (for when a person is too old or lazy to go to a clubhouse).

I'm finding 965 sq ft a little much, I would be happy with 600 sq ft instead I think. It takes me 30 steps to go from my bedroom window to the kitchen sink (the apartment is laid out in a way that I have to do a lot of S shape walks).
Sounds real nice. Did you stay in the same town?
 

Youngster

New Member
@NorthernLight wrote an excellent summary of things to think about.

If you want to make this your last move, consider location first. What we did easily at 55 isn’t so at 75.

Look at the reality of how you like to live. Do you like lots of cupboards in your kitchen? A huge fridge? W/D on the main floor. Lots and lots of cupboards. What are your hobbies.

What are your bare minimums. 2 beds, 2 baths? Do you need a garage? Do you want to maintain an exterior.
Lots to think about. It's almost overwhelming. I think we have one more move in us so we have to get it right.
 

Blessed

Senior Member
I am in a house much too large for me but it is home. I know the house, I know that it has been well taken care of these last 30 years. There is plenty of room if the kids are not able to keep their home due to the crazy inflation we are all suffering. I have the feeling that they may be struggling as the cost of everything, and I mean everything continues to rise.

I don't think they have comes to grips with inflation, they are living in a world that calls for cutting back, going without, living a more simple life. They are still spending money, they have not yet accepted the truth. No, you can not have all those extras, you have to cut back so you have shelter, food, medical care, electricity. Time to give up fancy coffee, going out to eat, movies, trips, massages, facials, professional hair color. Do we like it, no, but it is the truth, yes it is.

They should not be thinking about today but how their decisions will play out in the future. Seems to me like all the advertisements give our young adults is to just live in the moment, go all in, do anything you want. They never say when you get old you will struggle to have a decent home, enough money for food, good medical care.

If it became available, I could see myself buying back our first home, only about 1000 sq feet. It was a place I felt very happy and safe. I guess I am silly, holding onto to this house but I also see that I have a home big enough for the son's familiy, in a excellent school district. With what is happening in the world, the inflation that touches everything, I can see many families living together because it is no longer feasible to live apart. Resources put together can offer a better standard of living than being on your own.
 
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