Chances are you’ve heard all about tiny houses in the past few years. Whether it was via a show on TV or through a friend who’s considering building one, the tiny house trend is everywhere, and for good reason. As the cost of living continues to increase, so does the impact that living has on the environment. The tiny house presents an opportunity to downsize and live a more minimalistic life, while also reducing your negative impact on the environment.
So how, exactly, does decreasing the square footage of your living space translate into a healthier life and globe? There are countless benefits, but here are a few of the most important in terms of the environment and your lifestyle.
Fewer Raw Materials
Most tiny homes come in at less than 200 square feet, compared to an average home’s 2,598 square feet. From the very first piece of the foundation laid, a tiny house starts saving the environment. Due to its drastically smaller size, a tiny home typically only uses up about half a truckload of lumber — whereas a traditional home can require up to seven truckloads. The same goes for all the materials that go into the home, from stainless steel sinks to ceramic toilets.
What’s more, most tiny house owners opt to use eco-friendly materials that have a smaller impact on the environment. For instance, they may enlist reclaimed wood for the floor or upcycled siding to line the outer walls. The small size of the home makes it possible to use these types of environmentally conscious materials.
Then, once the house is constructed, the eco-friendly aspects continue to shine through. The smaller square footage allows you to use less energy in the form of electricity and gas. In fact, you could decrease your carbon dioxide emissions by 26,000 pounds per year. You may also be able to live off the grid, meaning you generate your electricity via solar panels on the top of the tiny home as opposed to using the public power supply. This affords you a flexibility to travel and care for Mother Earth.
Tiny homes are also much easier to heat and cool. Since there’s simply not as much space to warm up or cool down, these systems require less energy in a tiny home. You might even be able to use natural methods of heating and cooling, like designing a home with ventilation that makes use of the summer breezes instead of electric air-conditioning units.
Similarly, a tiny house requires less water than the average home. And since water is one of the earth’s most precious resources, this is a big deal. Since you’ll likely only have one toilet in your tiny home, one shower, and possibly one or two sinks, you simply won’t be able to use as much water as you would in a home that plays host to two or three bathrooms. If you decide to go off-grid with your tiny home, you may also be able to use an alternative water source — like the rain that falls from the sky.
When you move into a tiny home, you’ll have to downsize. Fewer possessions mean less potential for waste. You won’t be as likely to accumulate many new possessions, either, because you simply won’t have the room for any excess clothing or trinkets. This could greatly impact the way you view waste. You might find that you naturally begin to waste less and less, not just when it comes to things, but also when it comes to food and energy. Tiny house living creates a deeper sense of responsibility to the earth.
More Time Outdoors
Mother Nature was meant to be enjoyed by all. But when you live in a large home with every creature comfort imaginable, it can be hard to find the motivation to go outdoors, particularly when the weather isn’t perfect. Folks living in a small home are more apt to crave fresh air because their tiny house simply isn’t designed for extended periods of lounging. They consider it more of a jumping-off point for their day, and they’re obviously more apt to get outside to savor the wide-open space and the fresh air.
With so many perks of tiny house living, it’s no wonder why the push for a more minimalist lifestyle has enthralled people across the nation. If you’ve been thinking about going tiny, right now could be a perfect time. After you shed most of your earthly possessions and design a simple tiny house, your impact on the environment will drop drastically and you may find that you have more time to spend outside. So, if you’re a fan of Mother Earth, prove how much she means to you by going tiny!
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About the Author
Kacey Bradley is the lifestyle and travel blogger for The Drifter Collective, an eclectic lifestyle blog that expresses various forms of style through the influence of culture and the world around us. Kacey graduated with a degree in Communications while working for a lifestyle magazine. She has been able to fully embrace herself with the knowledge of nature, the power of exploring other locations and cultures, all while portraying her love for the world around her through her visually pleasing, culturally embracing and inspiring posts. Along with writing for her blog, she frequently writes for sites like US Travel News, Thought Catalog, Style Me Pretty, Tripping.com and more! Follow Kacey on Twitter and subscribe to her blog to keep up with her travels and inspiring posts!
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