downsizing your house

I recently looked into downsizing my house.  This idea came into my head for many reasons, which we can visit another time.  I decided to do a little research and see if this was feasible.  First, there’s a few things you should know about where I live.

  • Frisco, Texas
  • Population: 122,000+
  • Average income: $101,000+ (over twice the national average)
  • Average house size: 3,100 sq. ft.

My house is less than 1,800 sq. ft.  I won’t get into my salary here, but I’ll just say God has a great sense of humor having me here in Frisco… for many reasons.  Still, I decided to look into downsizing my home, just a little bit.

My options were slim to none.  I could buy a foreclosure, a smaller sized one, but by the time you add in the repairs (new house and existing house), realtor fees, cost of moving and the emotional toll on my kids, it’s just not worth doing.  I have seen a few people downsize their house, many of them upsizing again.

This whole process intrigues me.  I want to know more about it.  Who downsizes?  Why?  I’m doing some research on this topic and I would love your feedback.

  1. Have you ever downsized your home, or anything else?
  2. What were the costs?
  3. Were there any unexpected results?
  4. In the end, did it accomplish your financial or simplification goals?  
  5. If you looked into downsizing, but it wasn’t a good option, why not?
If you hate typing, but would be willing to answer these for me, please contact me.

snail mail tubes [minimalist challenge item #194]

[item] Cardboard mailing tubes

[purchase info] Purchased at the container store

[time in my possession] Approximately 7 or 8 years

[last used] Never

[difficulty level in getting rid of it] Easy, well a little more difficult than easy, just because I paid full price for them

[destination] Thrift store

[replacement item] None

[info] Wow, even I’m amazed at some of the crap I hang on to.

I can kill artificial plants [minimalist challenge item #193]

[item] Several pots and planters

[purchase info] Given to me

[time in my possession] Approximately 3 months

[last used] Never, well I tried a few of them

[difficulty level in getting rid of it] Easy

[destination] Thrift store

[replacement item] None really, but I did buy 2 new pots for my front porch

[info] I got these with the intention of doing some small container gardening.  The heat, a drought and the fact that I can kill an artificial plant is a recipe for a gardening disaster, unless of course, you’re the Adam’s family.

out of sight, out of mind [minimalist challenge item #192]

[item] Halogen cabinet light

[purchase info] Purchased new

[time in my possession] Approximately 7 years

[last used] I have no idea

[difficulty level in getting rid of it] Medium

[destination] Thrift store

[replacement item] None

[info] I needed one of these about 3 years ago… and bought one new.  I had no idea this was in storage.  This is the perfect example of why we shouldn’t store things we think we’ll need someday.  Out of sight, out of mind.

strap it to your head [minimalist challenge item #191]

[item] Samsung sports camera lens attachement

[purchase info] Purchased new with a video camera

[time in my possession] Approximately 6.5 years

[last used] 6 years ago

[difficulty level in getting rid of it] Easy

[destination] Thrift store

[replacement item] None

[info] This little jewel can strap on to your arm, head or anything else.  It’s an external camera lens for a video camera I don’t even have anymore.  Why do I hand on to this stuff?  Seriously…

it’s too hot for this anyway [minimalist challenge item #190]

[item] Hand-knit scarf

[purchase info] Made for me

[time in my possession] Approximately 3 years

[last used] Never

[difficulty level in getting rid of it] Medium

[destination] Thrift store

[replacement item] None

[info] First of all, I’m sure we might never see cool weather again.  I get hot just looking at stuff like this.  (don’t go there…)  It’s not a style I’m fond of, but someone did make it for me.  I’d rather see it go to someone that will appreciate it.  Maybe someone that lives in Alaska?

control time. eat more lucky charms. [minimalist challenge item #189]

[item] A Spanish and an English Lucky Charms cereal box

[purchase info] Purchased new… I don’t buy used food

[time in my possession] Approximately 2 years

[last used] Last time we ate the cereal

[difficulty level in getting rid of it] Medium

[destination] Recycling bin

[replacement item] None, well, we might buy some more Lucky Charms

[info] I just found this funny.  The image on the box says “control time with the hourglass…”  There’s no disclaimer anywhere on this box that some little dried yellow marshmallows will not really allow you to control time.  So is this a true time machine?  Being in the marketing world, I found this intriguing.  How many kids are eating these, thinking they will be able to control time?  I suppose we all do control our own time, but can’t we do that without the marshmallows?  If I eat the clovers, will I be lucky and win the lotto?  How about the heart?  If I eat the hearts, maybe people will stop comparing me with the Grinch.  Honestly, I would love to see this in court.  General Mills versus the people that can’t control time, even though they ate the hourglasses.  Oh c’mon!  You know that’s funny.  SNL would be all over this idea!

Control time.  Eat more Lucky Charms.” is the tag line on one of my blogs.  That’s why I was holding on to these boxes.  The one in Spanish has gold embossed letters.  Interesting.

my pink oven [minimalist challenge item #188]

[item] Pretty Maid retro pink doll oven

[purchase info] Purchased on eBay

[time in my possession] Approximately 6 years

[last used] A couple of years ago

[difficulty level in getting rid of it] Medium

[destination] Thrift store

[replacement item] None

[info] I had this on my “weird stuff” shelves.  It’s just a cool thing to have, but it has no purpose.  I still have some of the stuff from these shelves, but all they were doing is collecting dust.  Less is good.

old stuff, new stuff, red stuff, blue stuff [minimalist challenge item #187]

[item] Random stuff, ridiculous that I have this much of it.

[purchase info] Some purchased, some given to me, old stuff, new stuff, red stuff, blue stuff

[time in my possession] Who knows?  A long dang time.

[last used] Good question, mostly years ago.

[difficulty level in getting rid of it] Easy

[destination] Thrift store

[replacement item] None

[info] I only have 3 items pictured, carabiners, iPod sock and socks, but this was a few items out of a large bag of stuff like this.  Why do I have all this stuff?  Even if I did need it, I would never (a) remember I have it or (b) be able to find it.


my cat broke them [minimalist challenge item #186]

[item] 3 glass vases

[purchase info] Purchased at discount stores or thrift stores

[time in my possession] Approximately 4 years

[last used] A few weeks ago

[difficulty level in getting rid of it] Easy

[destination] Trash

[replacement item] None

[info] While I was on vacation, my cat knocked down my fireplace shelf / mantel and 3 glass vases broke.  I did have a desire to save the glass for a mosaic, but I already have a bin full that I haven’t used yet.  Stupid cat…