Monday, September 28, 2020

How We Make a 960 sq ft House Work For Us.....And Why It Won't Work Forever

Just over a year ago we moved into our first home! 

Buying your first home is the most exciting feeling, especially when you've been renting an apartment for the previous four years. We were thrilled to finally own our home and be putting money every month towards something that was all ours. We were thrilled to finally have more space and a yard. Everything about it was thrilling, from the time we made our offer to the day we officially moved in I was off the wall excited. 

Don't get me wrong I still love all of those things about our home. I love that we own it, I love that it's bigger than our apartment, I love that we have a yard... but it's not as much space as I initially thought it would be. The day we moved in and I realized that some of the rooms were much smaller then I pictured I was a little disappointed. Which is so sad I know. When we were shoving our bedroom furniture into the largest of the three bedrooms and I realized what little room we had to walk around I was frustrated because I was so sure that buying a home would be the answer to the space problems we always had in our apartment. News flash: it wasn't the answer!

Today I want to share some ways we are making our 960 sq ft house work for us. We've had to get a little creative around here! Then I want to share why it's not going to work for us forever...and what we are going to do about it. Before we get started though I want to say that I am so grateful for the home we have, I don't take it for granted. We are lucky that we are in the position to be able to own our home and a lot of my issues come from seeing huge custom built houses on Instagram, so please take this post with a grain of salt. That being said, here we go!

How we are making our 960 sq ft house work for us

- We are getting creative with food storage

If you haven't heard yet, we don't have a pantry. It makes food storage a little more difficult but we are doing a few things to help. 
  1. We installed a behind the door unit that fits on the back of our basement door. The basement door is right next to our kitchen so it allows us to store things like canned goods, oils, etc without having to take up precious cabinet space.
  2. We only use one double cabinet for food storage. We pretty much only keep items in here that are open. So open bags of chips, open jars of peanut butter, bread, or any sort of snack items in here.
  3. We installed three shelves at the top of our basement stairs. These hold overflow items and other closed containers of items. There's a lot of rice, pasta, and other boxed items on these shelves. 
  4. We utilize our home office to hold any overflow drinks that don't fit in our fridge. This includes soda and bottled water. 
- We use multiple closets for our clothes

My husband has a lot of clothes. I personally think the amount of clothes I have is pretty average but my husband has more then the average guy. (At least in my opinion)

Right now all of his hanging clothes currently live in our bedroom closet. All my hanging clothes currently live in the guest room closet. I recently moved all of Tim's sweatshirts to live with our jackets in the coat closet by the front door. I am constantly rearranging items trying to find the best system.

- I am constantly decluttering

I love to organize and declutter, I think it was just something I was born loving to do. I find myself constantly donating items and looking for junk to toss. For example the other day I moved some items around in our home office and I found myself testing all the pens and highlighters to see if any no longer worked. By constantly looking through items and getting rid of things that we don't want or need I am consistently opening up space in our home.

- We dream up and complete projects 

Any projects we do bring our house closer to being our dream home. Also, every project we complete makes the resale value of our home go up. We got a great deal on our home and know we will make a profit on it if/when we decide to sell. Doing projects makes this house more appealing to us and everyone else. Win all around!

- We are embracing the crazy

We know things won't be like this forever. Some day (hopefully) we will have more space then we know what to do with. We are doing our best to enjoy this chapter of life and feel very at home with our current house.

....and why it won't work forever....

We know this house, the way it is right now is not our dream "forever" home. We didn't purchase it thinking it was our forever home, it was simply a starter home. We live in a coastal town in Rhode Island where the taxes are much lower then the surrounding towns and buying a house in this particular town was our top priority. The neighborhood we bought in was one very familiar to me, one of my best friends grew up just down the street from our current house and her parents still live there today!  It seemed like a perfect situation for us but we've learned a lot since moving in.

Despite having a basement for storage we are very lacking in space. I can think of a ton of rooms that I would like in a future home (whether that be adding them on here or moving to a different house) including; a pantry, laundry room, master bedroom/bathroom/closet, mudroom, garage, dining room.  Not having these rooms make simple things difficult. Not having a dining room means it's pretty much impossible to entertain. We can have a few friends over but we don't have a place for everyone to sit and eat which is frustrating. Without a mudroom we walk directly into either our kitchen or living room meaning there is dirt all over the floor constantly and it's a constant battle to get coats and shoes put away in the closet. 

If we have kids we will be giving up our guest room which is fine since we don't ever have guests but the bigger issue is I will no longer have my own closet. We will somehow need to move all of my hanging clothes back into the closet that Tim has filled in our bedroom. If we have more than one kid, I don't know where we would put them. In the same room together? Give up our home office that I currently work in every day? 

The bigger question is what our future plans are and I honestly don't have an answer for you! I am not sure if we will plan to add onto this house or if we will build/buy a new house in the future. I am personally on team build a new house but that is because I'm spoiled and want to plan the whole thing out and make it perfect for us. I also would love to have more land and have our house more hidden from the road. Right now everyone can see if we are home and see if we are in the front yard. I always dreamed of living in a neighborhood but honestly I think I would prefer living on a back road with more land. I like to spend time hanging around the house and would personally prefer a lot more privacy then we currently have.

I also am hopeful that we will have kids and would love to have a second floor with a playroom for them to enjoy. 

I could sit here and make a wish list of everything I hope we have in a future home but the main point is that we will end up doing something in the future, I'm just not sure which way it will go. For now we will just make improvements that work for us now but will also work for resale if we decide to go that route.

Tell me about your home! Is it your forever home? What is the square footage? Do you ever feel like you need more space?

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