It’s Week 36 of the 52 Weeks of Gratitude Challenge, here’s our challenge for this week:
If you missed any of the other posts in the series, check them out here.
Week 36: Your Home
What would you do with an extra 34 square feet in your home? If you were to buy more land, that 34 square foot space would buy you exactly 0.01 acres of land. With the average American home around 2,400 square feet, this would be less than 2% of that home. Well, my current home is a mere 34 square feet larger from my last place. This might seem insignificant, but a switch from 768 to 802 square feet made all the difference for us.
It started with a slip of paper under the door. I don’t remember exactly why I was home from work that day, but I was. I remember reading the top of the paper “Lease Renewal Rates.” For those of you who are lucky enough to own your home, this little piece of paper is the difference between staying put for another year or having to move out. When I looked at the renewal rates for the upcoming year, I was shocked to find that they had increased by over $100 a month! Our plan of staying put was uprooted, and we were going to have to find a new place to live in only a few months.
With no money saved for such an occasion, not a moving box in sight, and less than a year of residency in our current home, we were less than prepared to make any sort of move. In a panic, we found ourselves spending every waking moment looking for another apartment. We were then thrown yet another curve ball. Not only would we have to find a new place in just a few months, but we now needed to start looking for a washer and dryer as well. In case I wasn’t stressed enough from this move already, you can imagine how I was feeling now.
If you’ve ever wondered whether or not you have too much stuff, pack everything you own into boxes. You might be shocked to find how much you truly own. We felt like we had just unpacked only to have to repack again. With the exception of our furniture, everything we owned fit in just one room of our new place. Remember back in the beginning when I told you we only gained a mere 34 square feet?
After completely decluttering our home, I began to realize just how much space we had. Our rooms are very spacious and require little work to keep them tidy. Our new home, began to feel like our true home. We have now lived here for just over a year, and have found ways to make renting just as enjoyable as owning a home. The truth is, even if we had the exact same square footage, it took moving to make us realize how much space we really had. How your home is laid out can make a huge difference in the overall structure of your home. The way you organize the items within your home, will make the biggest impact.
Our home is not very big, in fact we’ve never lived in a big home. As we begin our search for houses in the future, I’m reminded of the way we utilize this space. I’m by no means looking for a tiny house or anything like that. In fact, I’m sure we will end up living in a larger place than we currently have. The experiences I’ve gained from this space have taught me the value in a home, and what is truly important. It doesn’t matter how much square feet you have, or what you have in it. It’s about the people you share that space with, and the memories you make there.