The only way, I have been able to afford it “all” is by thinking and buying small. I’m not saying ‘tiny’ but I am saying small. By owning a small house, small car, small vacation home, small boat, small RV and by living small, I’ve been able to have everything I wanted. I know my way of reasoning has been contrary to the usual mode of thinking but over the decades, my living small has worked out perfectly for me. By reducing the size of almost everything, I’ve been able to have more, enjoy more and afford more.
My homes have never been more than a few square feet over 1000. Smaller homes mean smaller: cleaning expenses, maintenance costs, living expenses, furniture requirements and utility costs. Space is a premium, so you are compelled to only buy and store what you need. Nothing more. Nothing less.
The only thing that is big in my life is my bank account. By living the smallish lifestyle I can save more money and build up more wealth. I have found over the years that living with less has actually made me happier. I detest clutter, so nothing gives me greater joy than living in an environment that is affordable, cleanable, maintainable and within budget. I don’t buy anything other than what’s necessary for me and DH. I don’t envision parties or guests or family members nor do I make room for their infrequent visits. That’s what backyards or the local neighborhood diner is for.
I was given a gift in my lifetime. There was a period in my life when I was able to clearly see what was most important in my life. That’s when the stock market crashed in 2001 and almost everything I owned was either gone or taken away. I was living large and over leveraged. My lifestyle was technically ‘rented’. It didn’t take long for me to default on my responsibilities, have my savings and checking accounts seized, my car repossessed. It was through the grace of God that I sold my home one day before it went into foreclosure. The equity I made on the sale got me out of all my troubles BUT not without teaching me a very valuable lesson. Every night, before I fell asleep, I would say this prayer I composed, to God:
Thank you God for my comfy bed
And the roof above my head
Every day a hot shower and three meals I’m fed
Thank you, Lord for this homestead
If you have a comfortable bed to sleep in every night, a safe environment to live in, access to hot water and ample nutritious food, you my dear friend, are living large. Very large indeed. Learn what is most important in your life and live smaller.
Manage with less. Do without.
Live small and you can have it all.