Whether you live in New York, Seattle or some other crowded city, one thing is for sure: there’s a pretty high chance you’re living in a tiny apartment. I know I am. You’re building your empire and you can’t afford a spacious penthouse (yet) and that’s just fine. According to The House Designers, tiny spaces are becoming mainstream and anything less than 1,000 square feet counts as a tiny space, so many of us fall into the category. In fact, just the other day I drove by a furniture store that was called ‘OMG it’s small’ and it caters to those shopping for furniture for their small apartment. Go figure. I’ve come to recognize that living in a small space can benefit you in unexpected ways, though. Spring cleaning is so much faster and easier. You’ll be more of a minimalist, you’ll simplify every aspect of your home life, and you’ll have a way easier time cleaning up and keeping track of your things. You’ll spend less of your hard-earned cash on home décor because, well, you have nowhere to put it anyways. What are some other unexpected benefits of living in a tiny apartment? Read on for 8 reasons why living in a small apartment is actually a great thing:
1. You’ll save a bunch of money
You don’t need me to tell you that it’s cheaper to rent a smaller space. Additionally, the smaller your space the less your monthly bills will rack up since it takes less energy to light up, heat up and cool down your space. If your place is half the size of your friend’s place, who do you think is spending half as much on utilities?
Do you dream of traveling or having a large savings account but find this to be impossible with your current monthly bills? Well, tiny living offers freedom from these financial issues by letting you dramatically reduce your expenses, so you may want to think about moving into a smaller apartment. Additionally, you’ll have less decor to buy, a small collection of artwork will go a long way, and smaller furniture costs less than large-scale furniture.
2. Your mental health may improve
There is some conflicting evidence being debated by psychologists regarding the mental health benefits or complications of tiny home living. However, many in the field have pointed out that small spaces tend to be less visually complex, which can be comforting for some people. Plus, your home should be cozy, and small is cozy – and comforting. In the best-selling book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up it’s pointed out that a clean living space is good for your mental health, and it’s easier to keep smaller spaces clean and tidy.
It’s also beneficial that a smaller space can provide you with a greater sense of control over your environment. You’re also much less likely to have to play the host all the time compared to friends living in spacious apartments. Finally, people who live in small apartments are much more likely to spend time outside, and spending time outdoors is directly linked to happiness. There are many documented mental health benefits to physical activity and being outside in nature.
3. You will finally have to de-clutter
If you’re about to move into a small apartment, you’re about to do some major de-cluttering and that’s a fantastic benefit. If you’re like the vast majority of Americans, you have approximately 300,000 items in your home. This tends to create a lot of clutter, even if you attempt to straighten up on a daily basis. Moving into a tiny apartment will force you to let some of those items go, which will result in less clutter accumulating. Chances are, though, that even if you donate half of your kitchenware, you’ll still have too much of it for your small kitchen. This article explains how you can save space in a small kitchen by installing extra shelving and hooks.
De-cluttering and adopting the minimalist approach has been linked to improved mental and physical health, and this is one of the prime reasons that so many people have embraced the concept of minimalism. Quite simply, if you have fewer possessions, there will be less to do to keep your living environment looking and feeling great!
4. You’ll reduce your negative impact on the environment
Carbon emissions are caused by many things, but one of the biggest home offenders is heating. Regardless of the type of heating system you have, you’re putting carbon emissions into the surrounding community each time the heater comes on. Therefore, if you’re concerned about the environment, you can take steps to reduce your carbon emissions by moving into a smaller home. Of course, you’ll still need to be careful with your heat usage to have the biggest possible impact, but a smaller home will automatically help based on its size alone. The truth is that small living spaces are much more eco-friendly and more economical than larger living quarters.
5. You get to be more creative
Living in a tiny space requires creativity, especially if there’s more than one person in the home. You’ll be able to fully stretch your creative juices by working out solutions to issues such as storage space and maintaining privacy. You’ll get inspired to make your small space chic, and you’ll get creative in decorating it to make it look bigger, brighter and less confined. This also encourages a less cluttered environment and will help you determine which items are truly important versus the ones that can be donated or thrown away. Tons of creativity is involved when it comes to adopting the minimalist approach (which you must if you’re living in a small space.)
6. You’ll have more free time because you’ll spend less time cleaning and organizing
The larger the home, the more time it takes to keep it clean and well-organized. And, the bigger your space the more often you lose things, let’s be honest. It’s just not as easy to keep track of your things in a bigger space. By downsizing to a tiny apartment, you can keep everything clean without committing as much of your free time to household chores. This will make it easier to spend time with loved ones, pursue your personal interests and fit some daily exercise in. Keep in mind that all of these things can also improve your overall quality of life. If you feel like your current lifestyle doesn’t provide you with enough time to devote to personal relationships, hobbies or goals, moving into a tiny apartment may help you find a solution.
7. When it comes to decorating, you’ll get so much more bang for your buck
Living in a small space means that you’ll be able to get a lot more bang for your buck by finally getting the nicer interior you’ve always wanted without blowing your budget. Less space means that decorating your apartment will be much cheaper. You can have fun with it and make your space beautiful so much more easily – and more cost-effectively. Check out some of my tips for decorating a small apartment. Pretty chic, right? You have more room than you think to display your trinkets from around the world – simply invest in some cool floating shelves for your walls. You can save space with chic furniture that doubles as storage, and you can make your tiny space look bigger and brighter with eclectic mirrors. All of these decorating tips for smaller spaces definitely makes living in a small home look not so bad.
8. Relocating will be easier when it comes time
At some point in the future, you may need or want to relocate, or upgrade to a bigger space. So, it’s great news that small spaces are easy to transport. Less stuff, less fuss. You also won’t have to spend a bunch of time selling furniture or décor that won’t fit in your new place. Chances are, all of it will fit if you’re moving from a tiny apartment. Moving sucks, but you don’t dread it as much when you’re moving from a small space with less stuff.
Erica Gordon is the author of Aren’t You Glad You Read This? The Complete How-To Guide for Singles with a History of Failed Relationships Who Want their Next Relationship to Succeed, available here.