For me the answer is rather simple. The pros outweigh the negatives by a long shot. But before I answer, perhaps a journey down memory lane is in order.
My parents were nomads, missionaries and entrepreneurs. In my childhood I went to 9 different schools, move 10 times, lived in Australia and abroad, been raised in remote communities and cities, lived in three sheds, homes that dad built with his own hands and perhaps the greatest adventure was spending almost a year on the road with my three siblings and parents in a horse drawn wagon. Which, in hindsight, makes me realise this is not the first tiny home I have dwelled in.
Throughout my childhood I saw my parents tremendously free, wildly adventurous and debt free. We never had lots, Dad was too much of change/adventure seeker to be in any stable job for too long. Change was normal… even exciting!
Regardless of our income, because my parents raised me thinking outside of the box and making materialistic sacrifices, I saw my parents free from mortgages, free being bound in a consumeristic mindset and enthralled by life
I grew to love living uniquely, learning money does not buy happiness and learning that I can be extremely content living differently than the status quo.
At 17 years old I was swept off my feet by my South African Mountain Man. He was my soulmate from the moment my eyes set upon him and as my soulmate he is likeminded, being grounded and adventures all at the same time. By 18 I became his wife and we started to dream and build a life together.
So why a tiny home?
We want to live debt free and we’re willing to live alternatively to do so. Since moving into my our tiny home i’ve had people have compassion on me, stating sympathetically, “everyone has to start somewhere”, “it’s just a season”, “it’s ok you live in a tiny home, don’t worry about what people will think”. I assure you, I don’t. I saw the quote “it’s ok to live a life others don’t understand”. And it really is ok! Being debt free means that we are able to have freedoms that many aren’t privileged to. For me, debt is like depression. A yucky black cloud sitting over your head that you can see but can’t shift. And I am not interested in the cloud.
We are lovers of the earth. We have been made responsible to be caretakers of this beautiful planet and unfortunately as a whole, us humans aren’t doing so good. The hunger for power and money has led to the destruction of our planet and it hurts my heart. I want to be a faithful steward with what I have been given, as does my family. So we adjusted our lifestyle. We are off the grid, have a compost toilet, a self created garbage disposal system. Every item we purchase has to have a purpose and is kept to a minimum. Even the footings for our home is designed not to leave a permanent mark is we leave this abode some day.
We want our children to know money doesn’t buy happiness. Some of my happiest years were when I did not have a lot. However, it doesn’t take long when living back in mainstream, western society for bad (or normal to most) habits start popping up and becoming the norm. This is the main reason even before the tiny home, we have been television free. My Valentine will see the world differently, will think critically, challenge the status quo and find content in simplicity… because that how he will be raised.
We like having a home. Home is a sanctuary. Home is where you can come and rejuvenated so that when you leave home you have a full cup to invest yourself into other humans and the world. I’m a proud homemaker and keeper. Plus, when it comes to our vocational choices, both my Mountain Man and my passions lie in supporting and connecting with other humans. To have real eternal purpose and value. So to do this, we need a sanctuary that can support our personal and spiritual growth.
Plus renting sucks. Having people own the four walls surrounding your existence means you can’t live freely and proudly as I hope to. Being scrutinised at inspections and having to fight for bond though you left a place cleaner then you arrived is not my idea of fun. I always struggled with renting. You can’t put a picture on the wall, have others coming through your home to make sure you’re kept accountable to the owner. It just isn’t the same without being yours. With a tiny home, I can paint walls, take ownership and do what I like. I like that.
So we spent our small fortune, took 6 months off, had a baby and built a tiny home. And we are so glad we did.