As the average U.S. home size increases, demanding more energy and materials, living smaller is a surefire way to reduce your ecological footprint. Whether you're downsizing to 2,000 or 200 square feet, it's also an opportunity to enjoy a simpler way of life and thoughtful design. Here are some tips for making the transition:
- Study how you use your current dwelling and where you spend your time. For example, do you really need a formal dining room?
- Give away junk you've had for years. It's surprisingly liberating.
- Use the vertical. Cathedral ceilings make a room feel more spacious and can hold sleeping lofts.
- Bring the outside in. Carefully placed windows and porches heighten awareness of seasons, stars, flowers, and animals.
- Finish your small home with details you'll love--stained glass, say, or walnut filigree. In less space, they're more affordable.