Advertising
Advertising

9 Benefits of Living in a Tiny House

9 Benefits of Living in a Tiny House

I’m obsessed with tiny houses. I watch all the new shows dedicated to this unique style of living: Tiny House Hunters, Tiny House Builders, Tiny House Big Living, Tiny House Nation. I just eat all of them up. I love learning about the different benefits that tiny houses offer to their owners. I also love seeing the different ways they’re designed and decorated to be perfect for their owners’ needs.

Over time, I’ve learned about nine big benefits of living in a tiny house:

1. You can take it traveling

tinyhouse2
    Nicolás Boullosa

    One of the biggest benefits of having a tiny home is the ability to just hitch it to a truck and drive it to a new location.

    Whether you’re trying to move to a new spot of land or just go on vacation without having to pack up some suitcases, having a tiny home makes it surprisingly easy to see new places.

    Different tiny homes are built in different ways. Some are equipped with rainwater collection and solar panels. They are designed to live completely off the grid and can be parked just about anywhere you want. Other tiny homes are built more traditionally, needing power and water hookups. They are better suited to dedicated plots of land or RV/mobile home parking.

    Advertising

    No matter how you design your tiny home, its potential mobility is a huge benefit.

    2. You don’t have to spend a lot of money building it

    tinyhouse3
      Tammy Strobel

      If you have the time and ability to design and build the house yourself, you can only spend your money on materials. There are tiny home designers out there who will create and build it for you, but that obviously costs more as you’re paying for material and manpower and that company’s overhead.

      That said, tiny homes are just a fraction of the price of traditional homes, and you can have everything designed specifically for you. Prices for tiny homes can range from less than $19,000 to around $50,000 depending on its size and the kind of finishes that you want.

      The low price also means that you can potentially pay cash for it if you’ve spent enough time saving up. If you can’t pay cash, the loan payments will be much smaller than a traditional mortgage. No more $2,000 house notes for you!

      3. You don’t have to worry about future moves

      tinyhouse4
        Nicolás Boullosa

        One thing that often holds people back from purchasing a traditional home is its permanence. You’ve invested a lot of money into this immovable structure and the land surrounding it. What happens if you get a new job in a different city, state, or even country and have to move? Or if you just get some super annoying neighbors?

        Advertising

        Unless you actually buy a plot of land to park your tiny home on, you’re not tied to any property. Your only permanent tie is to the house itself, so if you get a new job somewhere else you can just hitch it to a truck and drive it to that new place! You still have to find a place to live, but the actual house itself will never be in question.

        4. You can be extremely environmentally friendly

        tinyhouse5
          Tomas Quinones

          Because your house is going to be so small, you can make a lot of it out of recycled, re-purposed, and salvaged materials. In addition to making your house look cool and unique, it also saves that same amount of new materials from being made.

          Like I mentioned in the first point, you can also set up your home to live off the grid. Using solar or wind resources to give your house power, using a rainwater catch and filtration system, and installing a composting toilet are all steps to enabling your tiny house to be functional anywhere in the world.

          5. You can be extremely energy efficient

          tinyhouse6
            Nicolás Boullosa

            Whether you use solar power or hook your house up to a power line, the energy needs of such a tiny space are much smaller than the energy needs of a traditional home. Smaller appliances work more efficiently and a smaller space uses less power to heat and cool the air.

            If you need to connect to a power source, you’ll still have to pay your electric bill, but it can be a quarter or less of your traditional house’s bill. On top of everything you’re saving on your mortgage, think about all the trips you can take with that money you’ll be saving!

            Advertising

            6. You can de-clutter your life

            tinyhouse7
              Matt Harriger

              Well — you have to de-clutter your life. After living in a traditional home for a few years, stuff just piles up everywhere. You can’t stuff everything that fits into a 2000+ square foot home into a 200 square foot home, so by necessity you’ll be donating or selling a lot of things.

              This gives you a chance to really look at your possessions to see what honestly matters to you and what you just have around because it’s always been there or it just looked cool so you bought it.

              Once you’ve pared down your possessions, you’ll only have meaningful and really necessary things. Plus, it’ll make your move much easier.

              7. You can spend less money on decorations, even if you love to change things up

              tinyhouse8
                Tammy Strobel

                If you’re the kind of person who loves to redecorate a traditional home every year or two, a tiny house might be the best canvas for you. Even if you wanted to repaint the whole thing, it would be done in a single afternoon with just a can or two of paint. New flooring? You only have 200 square feet to recover!

                If smaller pieces of decor are more your thing (pictures, throw pillows, rugs) the same thing applies here too. You have such a smaller area to coordinate that it’s much easier and cheaper to redo the entire house. You won’t have to go just one room at a time since you have extra money in your budget — the whole house is yours to play with.

                Advertising

                Maybe that’s where your energy bill savings can go.

                8. You can spend less time/money on cleaning

                tinyhouses10
                  Bill Dickinson

                  Another benefit that comes from having less space is you won’t use as much cleaner since you won’t have to buy it so often. Sweeping will only take a couple of minutes. Dusting? Even less time.

                  Some people love cleaning, so this might be a disappointment. However, if you hate cleaning, then this is a definite plus of tiny homes.

                  9. You can stay tidier easier

                  tinyhouse9
                    Tomas Quinones

                    This follows naturally from having to de-clutter to move in to a tiny home. You have less stuff, but everything actually goes somewhere. You’ll never let stuff pile up on the floor just because you don’t know where it goes or because that back closet is just too full.

                    What is it your mom always says? “A place for every item, and every item in its place.”

                    Again, if you love to clean, this won’t really mean anything to you. However, if you’re perpetually cluttered and untidy, this will be a great bonus to you because you can finally quit worrying about tidying before guests come over. Even if you let things get a little untidy, cleaning becomes much, much faster than before.

                    Featured photo credit: Tammy Strobel via flic.kr

                    More by this author

                    Kathryn Harper

                    Media Relations Manager

                    Scientists Tell You Why Making Your Bed Is Disgusting — And Bad for Your Health 7 Benefits of Bullet Journaling 7 Ways to Succeed at NaNoWriMo 5 Reasons You Should Participate in NaNoWriMo 6 Unexpected Benefits of Knitting

                    Trending in Home

                    1 30 Awesome DIY Projects that You’ve Never Heard of 2 5 Reasons Why Tidying Your Room Can Change Your Life 3 25 Really Cool Cat Furniture Design Ideas Every Cat Owner Needs 4 Scientists Discover Why You Should Take Off Your Shoes Before Entering Your Home 5 5 Ways to Deal with Snow Runoff in the Garage

                    Read Next

                    Advertising
                    Advertising

                    Published on November 14, 2018

                    Why You Suffer from Constant Fatigue and How to Deal with It

                    Why You Suffer from Constant Fatigue and How to Deal with It

                    With our busy, always on lives, it seems that more and more of us are facing constant tiredness and fatigue on a regular basis.

                    For many people, they just take this in their stride as part of modern life, but for others the impact can be crippling and can have a serious effect on their sense of wellbeing, health and productivity.

                    In this article, I’ll share some of the most common causes of constant tiredness and fatigue and give you some guidance and action steps you can take to overcome some of the symptoms of fatigue.

                    Why Am I Feeling Fatigued?

                    Fatigue is extreme tiredness resulting from mental or physical exertion or illness.  It is a reduction in the efficiency of a muscle or organ after prolonged activity.[1]

                    It can affect anyone, and most adults will experience fatigue at some point in their life. 

                    For many people, fatigue is caused by a combination of lifestyle, social, psychological and general wellbeing issues rather than an underlying medical condition.

                    Although fatigue is sometimes described as tiredness, it is different to just feeling tired or sleepy. Everyone feels tired at some point, but this is usually resolved with a nap or a few nights of good sleep. Someone who is sleepy may also feel temporarily refreshed after exercising. If you are getting enough sleep, good nutrition and exercising regularly but still find it hard to perform, concentrate or be motivated at your normal levels, you may be experiencing a level of fatigue that needs further investigation. 

                    Symptoms of Fatigue

                    Fatigue can cause a vast range of physical, mental and emotional symptoms including:

                    • chronic tiredness, exhaustion or sleepiness
                    • mental blocks
                    • lack of motivation
                    • headache
                    • dizziness
                    • muscle weakness
                    • slowed reflexes and responses
                    • impaired decision-making and judgement
                    • moodiness, such as irritability
                    • impaired hand-to-eye coordination
                    • reduced immune system function
                    • blurry vision
                    • short-term memory problems
                    • poor concentration
                    • reduced ability to pay attention to the situation at hand

                    Causes of Fatigue

                    The wide range of causes that can trigger fatigue include:

                    • Medical causes: Constant exhaustion, tiredness and fatigue may be a sign of an underlying illness, such as a thyroid disorder, heart disease, anemia or diabetes.
                    • Lifestyle-related causes: Being overweight and a lack of regular exercise can lead to feelings of fatigue.  Lack of sleep and overcommitting can also create feelings of excessive tiredness and fatigue.
                    • Workplace-related causes: Workplace and financial stress in a variety of forms can lead to feelings of fatigue.
                    • Emotional concerns and stress: Fatigue is a common symptom of mental health problems, such as depression and grief, and may be accompanied by other signs and symptoms, including irritability and lack of motivation.

                    Fatigue can also be caused by a number of factors working in combination.

                    Medical Causes of Fatigue

                    If you have made lifestyle changes to increase your energy and still feel exhausted and fatigued, it may be time to seek guidance from your doctor.

                    Here are a few examples of illnesses that can cause ongoing fatigue. Seek medical advice if you suspect you have a health problem:

                    Anemia

                    Anemia is a condition in which you don’t have enough healthy red blood cells to carry adequate oxygen to the body’s tissues. It is a common cause of fatigue in women.

                    Having anemia may make you feel tired and weak.

                    There are many forms of anemia, each with its own cause. Anemia can be temporary or long term, and it can range from mild to severe.[2]

                    Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS)

                    Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) is a condition that can cause persistent, unexplained fatigue that interferes with daily activities for more than six months.

                    Advertising

                    This is a chronic condition with no one-size-fits-all treatment, but lifestyle changes can often help ease some symptoms of fatigue.[3]

                    Diabetes

                    Diabetes can cause fatigue with either high or low blood sugars. When your sugars are high, they remain in the bloodstream instead of being used for energy, which makes you feel fatigued. Low blood sugar (glucose) means you may not have enough fuel for energy, also causing fatigue.[4]

                    Sleep Apnea

                    Sleep apnea is a serious sleep disorder where sufferers briefly stop breathing for short periods during sleep. Most people are not aware this is happening, but it can cause loud snoring, and daytime fatigue.

                    Being overweight, smoking, and drinking alcohol can all worsen the symptoms of sleep apnea.[5]

                    Thyroid disease

                    An underactive thyroid gland means you have too little thyroid hormone (thyroxine) in your body. This makes you feel tired and you could also put on weight and have aching muscles and dry skin.[6]

                    Common lifestyle factors that can cause fatigue include:

                    • Lack of sleep
                    • Too much sleep 
                    • Alcohol and drugs 
                    • Sleep disturbances 
                    • Lack of regular exercise and sedentary behaviour 
                    • Poor diet 

                    Common workplace issues that can cause fatigue include:

                    • Shift work: Our body is designed to sleep during the night. A shift worker may confuse their circadian clock by working when their body is programmed to be asleep.
                    • Poor workplace practices: This may include long work hours, hard physical labour, irregular working hours (such as rotating shifts), a stressful work environment, boredom or working alone. 
                    • Workplace stress – This can be caused by a wide range of factors including job dissatisfaction, heavy workload, conflicts with bosses or colleagues, bullying, or threats to job security.
                    • Burnout: This could be striving too hard on one area of your life while neglecting others, which leads to a life that feels out of balance.

                    Psychological Causes of Fatigue

                    Psychological factors are present in many cases of extreme tiredness and fatigue.  These may include:

                    • Depression: Depression is characterised by severe and prolonged feelings of sadness, dejection and hopelessness. People who are depressed commonly experience chronic fatigue.
                    • Anxiety and stress: Someone who is constantly anxious or stressed keeps their body in overdrive. The constant flooding of adrenaline exhausts the body, and fatigue sets in.
                    • Grief: Losing a loved one causes a wide range of emotions including shock, guilt, depression, despair and loneliness.

                    How to Tackle Constant Fatigue

                    Here are 12 ways you can start tackling the causes of fatigue and start feeling more energetic.

                    1. Tell The Truth

                    Some people can numb themselves to the fact that they are overtired or fatigued all the time. In the long run, this won’t help you.

                    To give you the best chance to overcome or eliminate fatigue, you must diagnose and tell the truth about the things that are draining your energy, making you tired or causing constant fatigue.

                    Once you’re honest with yourself about the activities you’re doing in your life that you find irritating, energy-draining, and make you tired on a regular basis you can make a commitment to stop doing them.

                    The help that you need to overcome fatigue is available to you, but not until you tell the truth about it. The first person you have to sell on getting rid of the causes of fatigue is yourself.

                    One starting point is to diagnose the symptoms. When you start feeling stressed, overtired or just not operating at your normal energy levels make a note of:

                    • How you feel
                    • What time of day it is
                    • What may have contributed to your fatigue
                    • How your mind and body reacts

                    This analysis may help you identify, understand and then eliminate very specific causes.

                    2. Reduce Your Commitments

                    When we have too many things on our plate personally and professionally, we can feel overstretched, causing physical and mental fatigue.

                    Advertising

                    If you have committed to things you really don’t want to do, this causes irritability and low emotional engagement. Stack these up throughout your day and week, then your stress levels will rise.

                    When these commitments have deadlines associated with them, you may be trying to cram in far too much in a short period of time.  This creates more stress and can affect your decision making ability.

                    Start being realistic about how much you can get done. Either reduce the commitments you have or give yourself more time to complete them in.

                    3. Get Clear On Your Priorities

                    If working on your list of to-do’s or goals becomes too overwhelming, start reducing and prioritizing the things that matter most.

                    Start with prioritizing just 3 things every day. When you complete those 3 things, you’ll get a rush of energy and your confidence will grow.

                    If you’re trying to juggle too many things and are multi-tasking, your energy levels will drop and you’ll struggle to maintain focus.

                    Unfinished projects can make you self-critical and feel guilty which drops energy levels further, creating inaction.

                    Make a list of your 3 MIT (Most Important Tasks) for the next day before you go to bed. This will stop you overcommitting and get you excited about what the next day can bring.

                    4. Express More Gratitude

                    Gratitude and confidence are heavily linked. Just being thankful for what you have and what you’ve achieved increases confidence and makes you feel more optimistic.

                    It can help you improve your sense of wellbeing, which can bring on feelings of joy and enthusiasm.

                    Try starting a gratitude journal or just note down 3 things you’re grateful for every day.

                    5. Focus On Yourself

                    Exhaustion and fatigue can arrive by focusing solely on other people’s needs all the time, rather than worrying about and focusing on what you need (and want).

                    There are work commitments, family commitments, social commitments. You may start with the best intentions, to put in your best performance at work, to be an amazing parent and friend, to simply help others.

                    But sometimes, we extend ourselves too much and go beyond our personal limits to help others. That’s when constant exhaustion can creep up on us.  Which can make us more fatigued.

                    We all want to help and do our best for others, but there needs to be some balance. We also need to take some time out just for ourselves to recharge and rejuvenate.

                    6. Set Aside Rest and Recovery Time

                    Whether it’s a couple of hours, a day off, a mini-break or a proper holiday, time off is essential to help us recover, recharge and refocus.

                    Advertising

                    Recovery time helps fend off mental fatigue and allows us to simply kick back and relax.

                    The key here, though, is to remove ourselves from the daily challenges that bring on tiredness and fatigue. Here’s how.

                    Can you free yourself up completely from work and personal obligations to just rest and recover?

                    7. Take a Power Nap

                    When you’re feeling tired or fatigued and you have the ability to take a quick 20-minute nap, it could make a big difference to your performance for the rest of the day.

                    Napping can improve learning, memory and boost your energy levels quickly.

                    This article on the benefit of napping is a useful place to start if you want to learn more: How a 20-Minute Nap at Work Makes You Awake and Productive the Whole Day

                    8. Take More Exercise

                    The simple act of introducing some form of physical activity into your day can make a huge difference. It can boost energy levels, make you feel much better about yourself and can help you avoid fatigue.

                    Find something that fits into your life, be that walking, going to the gym, running or swimming. 

                    The key is to ensure the exercise is regular and that you are emotionally engaged and committed to stick with it.

                    You could also walk more which will help clear your head and shift your focus away from stressful thoughts.

                    9. Get More Quality Sleep

                    To avoid tiredness, exhaustion and fatigue, getting enough quality sleep matters. 

                    Your body needs sleep to recharge.  Getting the right amount of sleep every night can improve your health, reduce stress levels and help us improve our memory and learning skills.

                    My previous article on The Benefits of Sleep You Need to Know will give you some action steps to start improving your sleep. 

                    10. Improve Your Diet

                    Heavy or fatty meals can make you feel sluggish and tired, whilst some foods or eating strategies do just the opposite.

                    Our always on lives have us reaching for sweets or other sugary snacks to give us a burst of energy to keep going. Unfortunately, that boost fades quickly which can leave you feeling depleted and wanting more.

                    On the other hand, whole grains and healthy unsaturated fats supply the reserves you can draw on throughout the day.

                    Advertising

                    To keep energy up and steady, it’s a good idea to limit refined sugar and starches.

                    Eating small meals and healthy snacks every few hours throughout the day provides a steady supply of nutrients to body and brain. It’s also important not to skip breakfast.

                    Eating a balanced diet helps keep your blood sugar in a normal range and prevents that sluggish feeling when your blood sugar drops.

                    11. Manage Your Stress Levels

                    Stress is one of the leading causes of exhaustion and fatigue, and can seriously affect your health.

                    When you have increased levels of stress at work and at home, it’s easy to feel exhausted all the time. 

                    Identifying the causes of stress and then tackling the problems should be a priority. 

                    My article on How to Help Anxiety When Life is Stressing You Out shares 16 strategies you can use to overcome stress.

                    12. Get Hydrated

                    Sometimes we can be so busy that we forget to keep ourselves fully hydrated.

                    Water makes up about 60 percent of your body weight and is essential in maintaining our body’s basic functions.

                    If we don’t have enough water, it can adversely affect our mental and physical performance, which leads to tiredness and fatigue.

                    The recommended daily amount is around two litres a day, so to stay well hydrated keep a water bottle with you as much as possible.

                    The Bottom Line

                    These 12 tips can help you reduce your tiredness and feeling of fatigue.  Some will work better than others as we are all different, whilst others can be incorporated together in your daily life.

                    If you’ve tried to make positive changes to reduce fatigue and you still feel tired and exhausted, it may be time to consider making an appointment with your doctor to discuss your condition.

                    Featured photo credit: Annie Spratt via unsplash.com

                    Reference

                    [1]Oxford English Dictionary: Definition of fatigue
                    [2]NHS Choices: 10 Reasons for feeling tired
                    [3]Verywellhealth: What is chronic fatigue syndrome
                    [4]Everyday Health: Why does type 2 diabetes make you feel tired
                    [5]Mayo Clinic: Sleep apnea
                    [6]Harvard Health: The lowdown on thyroid slowdown

                    Read Next