August 15, 2016 | By Erin Janus
What’s one thing that can destroy relationships, stress you out on a cellular level, nearly ruin your life— yet even the most hard-working, inspired individuals continue to willingly sacrifice their psychological and financial freedom (and pretty much sell their souls) to anyways? A mortgage!
Living in a beautiful home and being able to wake up in a spacious, well-designed environment is something that people will give up a lot to be able to do, but it can often come with a life-changing, life-limiting cost.
The trap: People want nice homes, but most of the nicest homes are built big
And usually the larger a home is, the more it costs, yet houses across the Western world continue to grow in size. According to the Wall Street Journal, U.S. homes are still getting bigger— with the average size of a new home in the United States being 2,467 square feet, 61% bigger than 40 years ago. The average size of new homes in Canada are reported to be approximately 1,950 sq. ft. On the smaller end of the spectrum, the average apartment size in the Western world measures in around 900 square feet.
But the experts say our societies’ love affair with big homes is simply not working; nor is it sustainable, because over the last three years over half of Americans (52%) have had to make at least one major sacrifice in order to cover their rent or mortgage, according to a survey carried out by Hart Research Associates. These sacrifices include getting a second job, deferring saving for retirement, cutting back on health care, running up credit card debt, and of course: moving out— often to less safe neighborhoods with worse schools.
And judging by the numbers of increasing new home size, people are refusing to settle for ‘smaller homes’. And probably because most of the smaller homes are older homes, often with brutally outdated, drab interiors and limiting, un-inspiring floor plans as well as being virtually void of architectural design. But that’s where the innovators come in…
Yes, it exists: an incredible, yet incredibly small home
FabCab, a Seattle-based architecture firm ‘committed to building eco-friendly homes with inspiring spaces’ is flipping the script and changing lives. They have mastered the building of new homes with exceptional floor-plans, stunning interior and architectural design, all while keeping things small— really small. At just 550 square feet, significantly smaller than the average apartment in New York, the stunning ‘TimberCab 550’ home is truly no bigger than it needs to be:
With incredible use of space, high ceilings and windows you usually only find in million-dollar homes, the ‘FabCab 150’ only costs about $165,000 in total to fully build— the same price range that dinky tiny-windowed, low-ceiling war homes built in the 1960s go for.
And no, this article was not in any way sponsored by FabCab, it was fueled by my very own inspiration and stumbling upon the reality that inspiring, beautiful homes can be tiny! Which is better for the health of the planet, and in many cases our own. Clearly, it’s not the size of the space that gives a home magic, it’s what done with the space. So, now— you can dream small. You’re welcome. 😉