Big Move to a Small House

We currently live in a home that is a 1,428 sf footprint, with about 2800 sf of living space. It's too big. It's also about nine miles from work, with the closest bus service about four miles away. Nine miles isn't far, but that's 18 miles round trip, five times a week, or 90 miles a week, or roughly 4,500 miles a year - not counting minor detours to run errands, etc. That's just driving to get to and from work.

We built the house to be as environmentally sound and energy as efficient as we could. For example, ICF (insulated concrete forms), Hardieplank siding, metal roof, dual-flush toilets, induction cooktop, centrally situated wood stove, etc. All good choices, but still too big a house for three people. And, while we have loved our beautiful retreat on an acre of wooded land, there is absolutely nothing within walking distance. When we "come down off the mountain," as we like to say, we're still several miles from even a convenience store.

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We're moving back to Saint Paul, Minnesota. Bye-bye house. We've purchased a 1924 bungalow of 920 square feet, 944 if you count the bathroom that was added to the otherwise unfinished basement. It's small, yes, Our son is going from a room in the basement that is 290 sf to a room that is less than 100 sf. And I can't wait!

I'll be able to walk four and a half blocks to work. We'll be about sevenblocks from the light rail and four and a half blocks from bus service up and down a main thoroughfare. There are stores within walking distance. Before building the house in the country, we lived nine and a half blocks away, in a house that was about 1200 square feet, but seemed much bigger and was two stories. A 1919 American Four Square.

So, we've been doing a lot of thinking about adapting to a smaller space - and we're thrilled. In addition to thinking about space and transportation issues, we're thinking a lot about ramping up other goals. We buy almost exclusively meat that is local, but we haven't stuck to a commitment to only eat sweet treats if we make them. So, with the big move on the horizon, I've decided to start documenting our attempts at, after several failed starts, living simply. Welcome aboard!

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Posted in Moving and Relocating Post Date 10/17/2015


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