One of the more consistent themes of thought for me recently is how not to head into the second half of my life without making conscious choices about what I want. It’s been such a struggle to overcome the reality that, when I sit down to think about it, I don’t want what a lot of people consider to be “normal.” Of course, I want things that are typical in the broadest sense: I want to feel secure, I want to be happy, I want to embrace life, yada yada yada. You know the story. The ways I want to do that, though, feel very alternate. I don’t want kids, I want lots of dogs, I don’t want a career in the traditional sense. I just want room to be what I want to be, ya know?
One of the creeping realities of my life as its gone so far is that I don’t want to be renting an apartment much longer. I can’t even bring myself to add up the amount I’ve spent on rent…I did it once and a week later when I emerged from my depression, I realized it’s time to make a commitment. The problem is that making a housing commitment seems to run antithetical to my best life. That’s the last thing I want to do….probably which is why I’ve rented so long. I definitely want to straddle two cities that are not close, I can’t afford two places, and buying a condo in Chicago feels like rolling Craps and hoping for the best with the odds of “best” pointing totally to the House (of the metaphorical casino where you’re rolling Craps and not an actual house).
So the question starts as, “what ways can I invest in a permanent housing solution that will pay off for me longer term and let me live the way I want to?” Then I add in the general move I’m making toward simplicity and downsizing and there’s one answer that rings clearly through the fog: Tiny House.
Now before all two of you reading this blog start heaping up all of the concerns, issues, challenges, whatever, of tiny houses just hold on for one second. Ask yourself how much of your response (if that’s the way you were going) is because this option isn’t normal? Every house has challenges. Every house has limitations. There’s no option that is perfect. So, normally, when people shop for houses or condos they pick the best fit. Doesn’t this apply to tiny houses too? I’ve never seen or heard so much skepticism as when it comes to these small houses, yet people are extremely quick to shop for a house that’s almost exactly the same size but stacked between two strangers who are completely unknown on a street that’s completely unknown. And that’s somehow more normal. I shake my head. Here’s a definite pro-tip: don’t talk to realtors about tiny houses. You’d think you’re asking them for advice on a full lobotomy. Get a grip, realtors.
This is the interior of a typical tiny house. I ask you: how terrible could this possible be? Even better, it’s built on wheels so, I could, you know, straddle to the two cities that I want to live in part time. And the mortgage would be paid off in 3 years. And it’s plenty of space.
Anyway, I’ve now gotten to a place in which I can’t stop thinking about tiny houses. Come to think of it, it’s very much like a tent. That I could, conceivably, park on the beach.
It’s truly exactly what I have now…just upsized. I have to make this happen.