A recent article in the LA Times reminded me of one of my posts from a couple years ago where I proposed that people should look for new homes with less storage space, not more.
She's all about the multiple huge closets, walk-in pantries, attics and
crawl spaces, sheds and oversized garages, and any other designed-in
nook and cranny that can hold… stuff.
Yes, the same mother in-law of Dr. Phil and Oprah
fame. Whenever we are touring an open house she inevitably looks for a
maximum amount of storage space. I do the opposite, and am impressed
with small closets and no pantries. The less room there is for
storage, the less that will be stored. The less that is stored, the
less cash that gets spent on stuff that might expire, go out of style,
or disappear into boxes that may be next opened by archaeologists.
The LA Times article described a successful fashion designer who recently downsized from a 4,000 square foot house to… 600 square feet. Greg Chait can afford whatever he wants, but he chose to go small.
home in the simplest of settings: an old Venice surf shack with about
600 square feet of living space. It’s a bohemian retreat that captures
the designer’s personality, friends say, and his sense of humor.
For a man who once lived in a 4,000-square-foot hillside Los Angeles home where he used only three rooms, downsizing was a lifestyle choice, not a financial imperative. "I've never been into sitting rooms that people never sit in," Chait says.
That's one form of waste. But small forces other efficiencies that could appeal to the lean homeowner.
"It's calm. It's comfortable," the fashion designer says of his home. "I feel like I've figured out how I need to live to make me happy."
A little 5S, sorting, straightening, and flexibility is indeed calming. But that must have been a helluva garage sale when he moved from his old home. How much room do you really need? Really?