4 Years in a Tiny Home - Part 3
April 7, 2023, 4:14 a.m.
Continued from part 2...
"Our experience with Tiny Idahomes was nothing short of wonderful. Since we were lucky enough to live locally at the time, we were assured that we could stop in anytime during the build process to take a look at how our adorable Tiny Home was coming along. We were guided through choosing our customization options, and given advice when we weren’t sure what to choose or how to implement an idea we had. As with all construction, there were a few times they needed to call us and explain something in our plans that needed to be changed, but they were always prepared with a great idea to solve the problem before we even had to really worry about it. My father came by a few times to check on how things were going, and always left impressed with the build quality. They also sent pictures whenever any “exciting” new developments happened, and even set us up with someone who could transport our Tiny Home to its parking spot in Washington. We truly could not have done this without all of the wonderful people at Tiny Idahomes that helped make our dreams a reality.
The first year of daily life was a huge adventure. We had downsized from a 1 bedroom apartment to a Tiny Home, moved to a new state, and traveled to Thailand and Japan, all in the same year. We loved having so few possessions. Life felt simple, the future looked bright, and our cats even loved the move, too! They gained lofts to climb into and many windows to look out of, both of which our apartment was devoid of. It felt amazing to own our own place and be free from the high rent that apartments bring. Cleaning was an absolute breeze and required very time to complete; the flip side of that, however, is the Tiny Home looked messier way quicker because there was less space. Overall, the weight that was off of our shoulders from simplifying so much was worth its weight in gold. While we were insecure about what we were doing, we had so much help at our disposal from our living situation (explained a few paragraphs down), it really helped the transition into RV living so much less daunting.
The second and third years went much more smoothly. We learned about checking the seals on the siding, the importance of keeping the Tiny Home level, decalcifying our water heater, performing cleaning cycles on our washer/dryer combo, cleaning the filter in our mini-split, continued refining the organization of our space, found unique space-saving products to help with daily life, and so many more little quirks of living in an RV full-time! Being able to have a simple life with minimal expenses was so helpful during the pandemic, as well. It took a lot of stress off our shoulders during an unprecedented time in the world, which is something we will always be grateful for.
Now we’re in our fourth year, and we’re beginning to make a few changes to the space. We want to update the exterior of the house with some new paint, we just completed painting the bathroom and updating some of the fixtures, and we changed the layout of our Tiny Home to have the cats in the storage loft instead of downstairs, and we now have a pull-out couch downstairs, which is perfect for guests and for relaxing at the end of the day. We’re realizing we’ve accumulated too many things, so we are in the process of going through our belongings and only keeping the essentials. Our theory is that people will always fill space that they’re given, no matter how big or small, so it’s good to frequently sort through your belongings and get rid of excess things.
The thing that helped us the most with the change from a traditional home to a Tiny Home was that for the first three years we lived in the Tiny Home, we lived in an RV park. This was extremely helpful because our neighbors helped us whenever we ran into a jam; my husband even worked as a maintenance tech at the park, and a perk of the job included free rent and utilities. He learned a lot about RV living during this time, which was invaluable, especially during our first winter. We live in an area with very harsh, cold winters, and got lots of invaluable tips on how to make sure our pipes wouldn’t freeze.
Many things were trial and error, such as learning how to use the composting toilet, how to keep humidity at bay, how to efficiently store items and arrange furniture, how many things to own, making sure the Tiny Home stays level, and general RV maintenance. Overall, it really wasn’t very difficult, but it felt overwhelming at first. Having experienced people to turn to really made all the difference. We would absolutely recommend that anyone new to RV life spends at least a little bit of time in an RV park for all of the above reasons.
A year ago we moved from the RV park to a spot in a mobile home park. We now have our own internet (we could only use the shared network at the RV park) and a lot more elbow room. Since we decided this is where we want to stay for the foreseeable future, we went ahead and had our composting toilet converted to a flushing toilet. You can read about that process here.
People often ask us what we miss from living in a traditional home. I was sad that we couldn’t fit my grandparents’ heirloom couch or our adorable little dining table when we moved in. There isn’t really a good spot for large tools, spare tires, seasonal items, etc unless you get a small shed, which we now have - it basically acts as a really tiny garage. Like I mentioned before, it is easy to accumulate too many things and feel like the space is more crowded than you’d like, as well as the fact that clutter is much more bothersome now than it used to be in a bigger space. Those minor inconveniences are really nothing in comparison to all the positives to living in a Tiny Home, though, so we solidly stand by our choice to go Go Tiny!
In summary, our life over the last 4 years has been very low-key, affordable, and simple. That’s exactly what we were striving for! Living in a Tiny Home has opened up so many doors for us that we would have never thought possible, and we’re so thankful to the folks at Tiny Idahomes for making our dreams a reality and giving us the tools to live our dream lifestyle. If you are someone who doesn’t need a lot of material things to be happy, please consider going Tiny. We wouldn’t trade our uncomplicated life for anything!"