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10 Tips for Transitioning To a Tiny Home When You Have Tiny Ones

A common misconception is that tiny house living is just for single people, or couples that don’t have kids. This simply isn’t the case! Downsizing to a tiny home when you have kids isn’t impossible, in fact, many families are now choosing to go tiny to bring the family closer together and cut down on all the debt associated with living in a large home.

If you’re considering making the move to a tiny home, there are a few factors you should take into consideration, as well as some tips that can make the transition easier. Read on to learn more about some ways you can make moving to a tiny home with tiny ones a breeze (or at least a little easier).

1. Establish a “Home” For Everything

Chances are you’ve already established this at your current home, but when you transition to a tiny home, making sure that every toy, clothing item, and kid necessity has a designated home. When you live in a small place, having toys scattered all over the place simply isn’t an option.

2. Create a Fun Outdoor Area

Just because you live in a tiny home doesn’t mean you can’t tell the kids to go have fun outside! By establishing an outdoor area for your kids, they’ll be able to explore the outdoors just as they did when you lived in a traditional house.

Adding a pergola is a great way to expand your home’s area while providing your kids with a covered space to play. And when the kids go to sleep, your outdoor oasis can serve as an entertainment space to enjoy a glass of wine or two with friends.

3. Get Creative With Toy Storage

With a larger home, you have the luxury of storing the kids' toys away in their room. This is not an option when you’re in a tiny home, though. So you’ll have to get more creative! Utilizing space under your loft stairs is one way to keep the kids’ toys tucked away while still having them easily accessible.

4. Downsize Stuff With The Kids

If your family is anything like mine, the kids get way too spoiled on every holiday and birthday. And with that comes an accumulation of toys, clothes, and other random knick-knacks that you’re constantly stepping on (legos, cough).

Chances are, you’re moving to a tiny home for a variety of reasons, but one of them is probably to downsize and eliminate the number of items you have. Whether you’re moving to a tiny house with toddlers, pre-teens, or teenagers, take this opportunity to help them downsize their stuff.

Not only will downsizing their stuff help them to prepare for a smaller living space, but it will provide you with a teaching opportunity, especially for the little ones. Help them understand why you’re moving to a smaller house, and what you hope to gain as a family.

5. Choose A Tiny House Plan That Will Grow With Them

Unless living in a tiny home is just a temporary situation, you’ll want to make sure that you choose a tiny home design that allows you to expand as the kids grow, or as your family grows! One family in Boise, ID added on an extra space when their child grew and needed a little more wiggle room, while other homes simply have trailer style pop outs that open up their space.

6. Avoid Holding Onto Duplicate Items

When you’re a parent it seems like your kids end up acquiring an insane number of binkies, sippy cups, and teething rings. Cut down on that clutter and pick just a select few to keep. This will really open up your cabinet space and allow for a bit of wiggle room for when they grow and need a whole new set of essentials.

7. Keep The Space Light and Bright -- Except The Couch

In general, one of the best ways to open up any small space is by painting it a light, bright color and letting lots of natural light filter in. The same applies to your tiny home. Stray away from dark colors and make sure that you have plenty of windows that you can open up.

That being said, when it comes to raising kids in a tiny home, you’ll want to choose a couch that is dark and can be easily wiped down. After all, the couch they’ll be spending most of their time on is the same couch you’ll utilize when you’re entertaining guests.

8. Try To Co-Op Baby Gear

If you have other friends or preschool parents that are also looking to downsize, consider setting up a co-op for baby gear! Storing away a booster seat or a high chair can take up some serious space, but you don’t want to get rid of it if you plan on having another kid.

By choosing to co-op your stuff with other parents, everyone gets what they need, when they need it, without having a bunch of items taking up space in storage. Though this may take a bit of planning and creativity, it can really pay off in the long run.

9. Establish A Kid Zone

Though this will look different for every tiny house, establishing a kid zone is key to keeping everything organized, and well, sane. Even if that zone is outside, it still allows your kids to have a space that they can call theirs. If you do have space inside your tiny home for a kid zone, make that the place that you store away all their toys!

10. Take It One Day at a Time

You won’t adjust to tiny house living in one day. Some days will be better than others, but in the end, your kids will learn to love it. Take each day as it comes, and just remember that each struggle will only bring you closer as a family!

Bio: Leigha Staffenhagen is the managing editor of Insteading.com, a homesteading and sustainability site focused on everything from gardening and raising chickens to off-grid living and tiny homes.

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