The tiny home movement is transforming how we think about space and real estate today, but what happens to old possessions as families downsize? One possibility is that they may increase their investment in self-storage space.
Other reasons tiny homes may bode well for self-storage profits? Some people aren’t certain they’re ready to embrace the movement full-time. Others are responsible for an assortment of family heirlooms they can’t part with. Finally, many tiny home residents find that the minimalism associated with the movement just isn’t easy to accomplish, especially in the short term. Downsizing has its difficulties.
Inside the Trend
If you’re just going to shell out money to store things that don’t fit in a tiny home, what’s the appeal of downsizing? While many insist that the movement is about minimalism, there are many reasons why people adopt this “smaller” lifestyle.
First, a lot of people in the tiny home movement are committed environmentalists. They want to live in homes that speak to sustainable living. This is easier to do in a tiny home for several reasons. First, tiny homes typically can function off the grid, meaning they might have solar capabilities and consume less energy in general.
Second, tiny homes contribute to less material waste in both building and consumption, and third, they have a smaller carbon footprint. This is the opposite of an oversized home that’s artificially heated, cooled, and filled with synthetic, manufactured products.
Setting Up Storage
As for all those things that don’t fit inside a tiny home, well, self-storage can help with that, and they rent just as much space as you need, ranging from small 5’x5′ units to 10’x30′ units that are bigger than many tiny homes themselves. This can give those shifting residences the opportunity to downsize intelligently, which should be a priority for all tiny home residents. It would be wasteful to toss useful items while hurrying to get rid of things.
Renting a storage unit is also an ideal way to take a home inventory. In a home inventory, you not only assess what you own, but consider what you would do if it all disappeared. What items would you replace and what would you do without? If you could do without it, then eliminate it from both the home and the storage unit, but if you would replace it, then it makes more sense to keep that item in storage.
Finally, using a self-storage unit is also a way to buy time while tiny home residents build necessary in-home storage. Your home may be mostly livable when it comes to eating and sleeping, but that doesn’t mean you’re set up for much else. That’s why most tiny homeowners truly live by the old adage, “a place for everything and everything in its place.” If you can’t come up with a DIY storage solution for an item in your home, it either stays in storage or gets thrown out or donated; otherwise, it will just become clutter.
With all this in mind, self-storage center owners should be marketing their services to this new niche in 2017. Though people who want to downsize may seem like a counterintuitive option at first, many small home residents are still on the fence about their living situations or can’t go quite as small as they hoped without assistance.
Self-storage is the bolster they need to keep those little extras, seasonal items, and keepsakes that are so hard to part with – and that can create a profitable opportunity for the self-storage industry.