This post is by Bernie Carr, apartmentprepper.com
I’ve been reading a lot about the trend to build and move into a tiny house and I am fascinated by the stories. I’m no stranger to downsizing, having lived in a 4,200 square foot home in a different time. Now that I rent, I haven’t lived in anything above 1,400 square feet in a few years.
But the tiny house movement is different – many of these houses are below 500 square feet, and a lot of them are built on wheels. I can see the advantages:
- low utility bills
- less stuff to keep track of
- easy to clean
- low cost
- quick to build
I can also see the disadvantages such as less personal space, very little storage space, no room to entertain indoors and having to get rid of your possessions.
Can you prep if you live in a tiny house?
On one hand, much of prepping has to do with keeping keeping supplies such as water, food and gear. “Two is one and one is none” is a common adage. But if you live in under 500 square feet, you may have to re-think that. Also, you may not have room for self-sufficiency activities that require additional storage space such as canning.
On the other hand, many of the tiny homes are also built off-grid, which gives you the advantage of being self-sufficient. As long as you have sustainable and renewable energy and water sources, that is.
With a little creativity, I believe there are ways to prep while living in a tiny home:
- Keep some of your supplies in an accessible storage facility or shed.
- Have an underground cache containing your supplies.
- You can keep your go-bag in your car or truck.
- If you are building your tiny house, you can allocate some vertical space for storage. You just have to be very choosy about what you store.
- Prepping is not only about storing supplies but also about learning skills. Acquire survival skills such as hunting, fishing, first aid, that do not require any indoor space at all.
- Start a garden in an outside window box or empty space in the yard
When you think about it, there are always opportunities to prep no matter where you are.
© Apartment Prepper 2014
Excellent post, Bernie! I am a few years away from retirement, and have been studying this very issue. In the end, one of the big attractions of the tiny house movement is the self sufficiency of the lifestyle, which resonates in many ways with prepping. True, you can’t stash a 2 year supply of paper goods in one of these places, but it’s amazing what some folks do store in their tiny houses(have you seen pix of the girl who keeps a full sized harp in her bathroom??!!)
Hi Sharon, Glad you like the post. The idea of self-sufficiency without all the huge material baggage appeals to me as well-I will continue to look into this as well. Thanks for the comment!
I live in around 600 sq feet, I think you can stash plenty if you are careful. With a tiny, I think it might be a bit easier to set up a rain catching system, just my thoughts.
Hi Pierce, Great to hear you are able to store away stuff in 600 sq feet. It really does come down to being organized. Thanks for the comment!
This has been my question lately. I love the tiny house movement. Have been downsizing of late. Purging more and more. But as I watch videos etc it doesn’t really show how storage works, cooking, etc. How often do you shop, fridge space, bulk buying etc. Communities of like minded people…where there is a community building for kitchen/cooking/canning/ bulk buying/ storage etc might work but only in those instances. If you are on your own then the out buildings are the answer…or under ground…with a freezing issue in some parts of the country. Now if you have your tiny home, your out buildings, and your land…your skills are your assets…the land is your kitchen, store, pharmacy, gym, recreation…I could go on and on. I’m an apartment dweller for now…maybe I’ll get my bus and convert that to roll on to my son’s property when he finds that special place he’s been hunting for…just for this purpose. Never give up on your dreams!
Hi Sonia, That’s great you’ve been downsizing and purging on stuff. You are well on your way! Thanks for the comment!
I assume that a person with a tiny home still has it parked on a piece of property. If so why not build a shed or get a Wells Cargo type of trailer to use as a storage area.
You could use the extra roof for more rain collection.
I wish my garage was 5-X as large as my house as I have lots of preps and work supplies to store. I only live in the house, but my garage (with the storage of construction supplies and tools) provides my income.
Hi Chuck, That makes sense, having a shed or trailer for storage if living in a tiny house. Thanks for the comment!