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The Cozy Home 100 Thing Challenge

The 100 Thing Challenge was instigated by author and professor Dave Bruno as a means to break away from the constraints of American-style consumerism. The idea behind the process is to go through everything that you own and attempt to get your personal items down to 100 things. The 100 Thing Challenge has further been influenced by people like Tammy of Rowdy Kittens, Colin Wright of Exile Lifestyle, Leo Babauta of Zen Habits.

Most 100 Thing Challenge bloggers seem to concentrate and report mostly on their personal items, however what if you could get your household items in your small home down to 100 things? That would mean your furniture, blankets, pillows, plants, spoons, rugs, photos, or anything else that is in your home would only add up to 100.

During the process of the 100 Thing Challenge you would do the following:

Reduce (get rid of some of your stuff)
Refuse (to get more new stuff)
Rejigger (your priorities)

During the first step — getting rid of your stuff —you will most likely come to the conclusion that you don’t need these items back. The result is that you will spend more of your time with family and friends and on creative pursuits rather than on acquiring new stuff — while saving money in the process.

Don’t take the 100 number too seriously. Some people try to get their personal or home items down to 500 or maybe even 50. What really matters is that you look closely at all the things you own and how you might be able to reduce them down to only what you need or are in love with. Think of it as a fun game.

However, along with games comes rules. Set up your own list of rules for doing a 100 Thing Challenge for your small or Cozy Home. The list could include rules like:

• If I receive a house-warming gift, something I already own has to go
• Groups of items (CDs or DVDs, underwear, dishes, tools, collections) can be included as one item
• Every few months on the 15th of the month, reevaluate my possessions
• Items that are shared (bed, car, TV) do not count in the 100 items

These rules can be personal to you, the size of your home and your circumstances. For example, Courtney Carver of Project 333 (who lives with only 33 things) does this with her wardrobe:

•    When: Every three months
•    What: Get rid of 33 items including clothing, accessories, jewelry, outerwear and shoes.
•    What not: these items are not counted as part of the 33 items – wedding ring or another sentimental piece of jewelry that you never take off, underwear, sleep wear, in-home lounge wear,  and workout clothing (you can only wear your workout clothing to workout)
•    How: Choose your 33 items, box up the remainder of your fashion statement, seal it with tape and put it out of site.
•    What else: consider that you are creating a wardrobe that you can live, work and play in for three months. Remember that this is not a project in suffering. If your clothes don’t fit or are in poor condition, replace them.

Whatever your number is, attempt to stick to it and your Cozy Home will feel less cluttered and more serene.

 

PHOTO: It’s okay, your pets can be included in your 100 things.

Photo by KatinkaBille/Flickr

 

By Christina Nellemann for [Cozy Home Plans]

Save Money With Small Home Floor Plans

6 Excellent Ways a Small Home Floor Plan Will Save You Money

If your budget is tight, you can save money with a small home floor plan. Today the majority of us are trying to find ways to save money, and downsizing is one great way to cut costs. Because a house is a major expense, it’s an important factor to consider when seeking to save money.

At present there is a trend towards small homes and tiny homes as many people are less interested in impressing their friends and family with a spacious house, and more concerned about the quality of their lives.

There are several reasons you might think about a small home, but saving money is at the top of most people’s list.

These are Six of the top ways a small home floor plan will save you money.

1. Energy-efficient. Less sq footage means much lower utility bills. Your small home will be significantly less expensive to heat in winter and keep cool in the summertime, as well as less energy consumption for lighting and other electrical use. A tiny home’s interior is much more energy-efficient since there are no wasted living space in areas not being used often for instance formal living rooms and dining rooms that are used just for visitors.

2. Cleaning is Much Easier! Every housewife or homemaker who has spent hours cleaning can easily see the advantage of a tiny home. You’ll save money on the many cleaning products needed to clean a larger house, as well as the time you will save zipping through a tiny home with a vacuum cleaner or broom, as opposed to hauling your vacuum cleaner from room to room on different floors.

While the reduced space for storage in a tiny home means you’ll want to stay organized, you’ll have to make decisions about what things you will keep and what is better tossed out or given away.

3. No Mortgage or Small Mortgage. Tiny houses are normally less costly to purchase overall; fewer materials for the construction, less money in labor, and can possibly be constructed without a mortgage. There are floor plans designed for DIYers to save much more money. For individuals who don’t want to do any work themselves, the best thing about small home floor plans is they are much less expensive to hire a professional to build.

It’s even possible to build many small homes without taking out a home loan. Wouldn’t it be wonderful to have not mortgage…or at least a small one!

4. Less Expensive to Decorate. Since your small house will only allow a limited amount of furnishings, you should look for dual-purpose furnishings like storage ottomans.

It’s much easier to furnish a tiny home than be required to purchase a lot of furniture to fill every room of a large home. Small homes likewise have less wall surfaces, fewer windows and floor areas. This may save substantial money on home furnishings like carpeting, window covering and expensive electronics…like a big screen TV for each room.

5. Save Money on Taxes. A small home will costs significantly less on property taxes than larger and more expensive homes. Lots of people invest in condominiums to reduce housing costs, however by owning your own tiny house, you will be able to maintain some independence and privacy while avoiding costly condo or homeowners association charges.

6. Worry Free Retirement. Of course, selling the larger family home and getting a smaller home enables empty-nesters to build up and protect their nest egg after retirement. Downsizing has several advantages for empty-nesters surviving on a fixed income.

Considering how much money you will need to live comfortably after you retire, it’s no surprise that so many people are looking to downsize and save money on housing expenses after retirement. Wouldn’t it be great to have the time and money to travel and enjoy your golden years without the worry, expense and upkeep of a large home?

If these six money-saving factors aren’t enough to convince you that a small home is the way to go, consider the environmental benefits of a tiny home.  There will be considerably less energy consumption to maintain a small home as a result of savings in cooling and heating expenses, as well as a smaller lawn. It’s also possible to reduce your carbon footprint more by picking greener construction materials and using chemical free household products and cleaners.

Find the Perfect Small Home Floor Plan that will save you money…

ADA Guidelines for Tiny Homes

One of the complaints of most tiny homes is that many of them are not adequate for homeowners who are disabled. Most wheelchairs and other mobility assistive devices can not fit or maneuver around in most tiny homes on wheels or small homes on foundations.

According to the Americans with Disabilities Act, ADA compliant home plans are plans that include features that make it more user-friendly for people who are disabled. However, making a home ADA compliant does not make the home just strictly for someone who is disabled, a home with ADA compliant features can also be used for the non-disabled. These features can also translate over to an elderly homeowner or someone who is building a home for retirement living or future medical challenges.

These designs are usually one-story and incorporate details such as no-step entries, wheelchair ramps, wider doorways and hallways, open floor plans and lower door handles, windows and light switches. Bathrooms can contain handrails, walk-in showers and baths, touchless bathroom faucets, and toilet safety seats.

Cozy Home Plans offers the first of several ADA compliant designs in the Cozy line. The 640 square foot Regal Mountain small house plan includes a 6×12 foot covered porch with a side light, an open and spacious living area and kitchen and a coat closet in the living room. The wide hallways contain large doors, a side by side washer and dryer and an ADA compliant bathroom. The master bedroom has a king sized bed. The inside continues into the outside with two doors that lead to a private oasis patio.

 

Photo courtesy of wheelchairslift.net

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