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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.

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    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?

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        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!

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            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.

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                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

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                    12 Best Brain Foods that Improve Memory

                    12 Best Brain Foods that Improve Memory

                    Nutrition plays a vital role in brain function and staying sharp into the golden years. Personally, my husband is going through medical school, which is like a daily mental marathon. Like any good wife, I am always looking for things that will boost his memory fortitude so he does his best in school.

                    But you don’t have to be a med student to appreciate better brainiac brilliance. If you combine certain foods with good hydration, proper sleep and exercise, you may just rival Einstein and have a great memory in no time.

                    I’m going to reveal the list of foods coming out of the kitchen that can improve your memory and make you smarter.

                    Here are 12 best brain foods that improve memory:

                    1. Nuts

                    The American Journal of Epidemiology published a study linking higher intakes of vitamin E with the prevention on cognitive decline.[1]

                    Nuts like walnuts and almonds (along with other great foods like avocados) are a great source of vitamin E.

                    Cashews and sunflower seeds also contain an amino acid that reduces stress by boosting serotonin levels.

                    Walnuts even resemble the brain, just in case you forget the correlation, and are a great source of omega 3 fatty acids, which also improve your mental magnitude.

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                    2. Blueberries

                    Shown in studies at Tuffs University to benefit both short-term memory and coordination, blueberries pack quite a punch in a tiny blue package.[2]

                    When compared to other fruits and veggies, blueberries were found to have the highest amount of antioxidants (especially flavonoids), but strawberries, raspberries, and blackberries are also full of brain benefits.

                    3. Tomatoes

                    Tomatoes are packed full of the antioxidant lycopene, which has shown to help protect against free-radical damage most notably seen in dementia patients.

                    4. Broccoli

                    While all green veggies are important and rich in antioxidants and vitamin C, broccoli is a superfood even among these healthy choices.

                    Since your brain uses so much fuel (it’s only 3% of your body weight but uses up to 17% of your energy), it is more vulnerable to free-radical damage and antioxidants help eliminate this threat.

                    Broccoli is packed full of antioxidants, is well-known as a powerful cancer fighter and is also full of vitamin K, which is known to enhance cognitive function.

                    5. Foods Rich in Essential Fatty Acids

                    Your brain is the fattest organ (not counting the skin) in the human body, and is composed of 60% fat. That means that your brain needs essential fatty acids like DHA and EPA to repair and build up synapses associated with memory.

                    The body does not naturally produce essential fatty acids so we must get them in our diet.

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                    Eggs, flax, and oily fish like salmon, sardines, mackerel and herring are great natural sources of these powerful fatty acids. Eggs also contain choline, which is a necessary building block for the neurotransmitter acetylcholine, to help you recall information and concentrate.

                    6. Soy

                    Soy, along with many other whole foods mentioned here, are full of proteins that trigger neurotransmitters associated with memory.

                    Soy protein isolate is a concentrated form of the protein that can be found in powder, liquid, or supplement form.

                    Soy is valuable for improving memory and mental flexibility, so pour soy milk over your cereal and enjoy the benefits.

                    7. Dark chocolate

                    When it comes to chocolate, the darker the better. Try to aim for at least 70% cocoa. This yummy desert is rich in flavanol antioxidants which increase blood flow to the brain and shield brain cells from aging.

                    Take a look at this article if you want to know more benefits of dark chocolate:

                    15 Surprising and Science-Backed Health Effects of Dark Chocolate

                    8. Foods Rich in Vitamins: B vitamins, Folic Acid, Iron

                    Some great foods to obtain brain-boosting B vitamins, folic acid and iron are kale, chard, spinach and other dark leafy greens.

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                    B6, B12 and folic acid can reduce levels of homocysteine in the blood. Homocysteine increases are found in patients with cognitive impairment like Alzheimer’s, and high risk of stroke.

                    Studies showed when a group of elderly patients with mild cognitive impairment were given high doses of B6, B12, and folic acid, there was significant reduction in brain shrinkage compared to a similar placebo group.[3]

                    Other sources of B vitamins are liver, eggs, soybeans, lentils and green beans. Iron also helps accelerate brain function by carrying oxygen. If your brain doesn’t get enough oxygen, it can slow down and people can experience difficulty concentrating, diminished intellect, and a shorter attention span.

                    To get more iron in your diet, eat lean meats, beans, and iron-fortified cereals. Vitamin C helps in iron absorption, so don’t forget the fruits!

                    9. Foods Rich in Zinc

                    Zinc has constantly demonstrated its importance as a powerful nutrient in memory building and thinking. This mineral regulates communications between neurons and the hippocampus.

                    Zinc is deposited within nerve cells, with the highest concentrations found in the hippocampus, the part of the brain responsible for higher learning function and memory.

                    Some great sources of zinc are pumpkin seeds, liver, nuts, and peas.

                    10. Gingko biloba

                    This herb has been utilized for centuries in eastern culture and is best known for its memory boosting brawn.

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                    It can increase blood flow in the brain by dilating vessels, increasing oxygen supply and removing free radicals.

                    However, don’t expect results overnight: this may take a few weeks to build up in your system before you see improvements.

                    11. Green and black tea

                    Studies have shown that both green and black tea prevent the breakdown of acetylcholine—a key chemical involved in memory and lacking in Alzheimer’s patients.

                    Both teas appear to have the same affect on Alzheimer’s disease as many drugs utilized to combat the illness, but green tea wins out as its affects last a full week versus black tea which only lasts the day.

                    Find out more about green tea here:

                    11 Health Benefits of Green Tea (+ How to Drink It for Maximum Benefits)

                    12. Sage and Rosemary

                    Both of these powerful herbs have been shown to increase memory and mental clarity, and alleviate mental fatigue in studies.

                    Try to enjoy these savory herbs in your favorite dishes.

                    When it comes to mental magnitude, eating smart can really make you smarter. Try to implement more of these readily available nutrients and see just how brainy you can be!

                    Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

                    Reference

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