Today’s interview is with the Canadian Hikers who live in a tiny home in Canada. Read on to find out more about their life in a tiny home.
Adventures of Tiny Home Living
with the Canadian Hikers
My questions are in bold.
Please tell us about yourself.
We are the Canadian Hikers. My name is Nat, I’m 27 and I am a teacher. My husband’s name is Marc, he is 43 and he is a gymnastics coach / going to college to become a graphic designer. We have been married for 4 years, together for 9.
We have an Instagram account @canadianhikers with a few pictures of our tiny house. Our next project is converting a short school bus into an RV to travel across Canada!
How did you involved in tiny homes?
Marc and I have never really had any interested in having a big house. Since we’ve been together, we have only lived in one bedroom apartments and one 3 bedroom house for 6 months.
We’ve been big fans of the tiny house movement for years now. When I graduated from university, Marc and I took 6 months off of work and lived in our 21 foot trailer. We got married that same year. After the 6 months went by without any fights, that’s when we realized that tiny living was definitely for us.
Can you tell us about your tiny home?
Our tiny house is unique in that it is an actual house. Our house is over 70 years old and built on a foundation. We don’t know much about the history of the home, but it seems that it was originally a cottage or a guest house. Our tiny house measures 450 square feet. It’s a one bedroom, one bathroom house all on one level.
Since we bought our house, we changed the ugly pink carpeting and replaced it with some laminate flooring. We also created a barn board feature wall in our living room with a handmade industrial light. One of my favorite things about our house is that it’s built on a giant rock.
Can you tell us a bit about your experience with a tiny home?
This August will mark our one year anniversary in our tiny house and we could not be happier! With every passing day, we are more and more convinced that this will be our forever home.
Since we moved in, we completed a few renos to make the home a bit more efficient. We had a closet in our bedroom that we didn’t really need because we downsized our clothes. Instead, we turned it into Marc’s office. Marc has always been a minimalist so he doesn’t have much stuff. I’m a bit more nostalgic so I tend to hang on to things that I don’t really need. But now that we’ve been in small spaces for years, I’ve learnt to find creative ways to keep those memories.
What don’t people know about tiny homes?
I think that people don’t realize how little space they really need. When we were renting the 3 bedroom house, we only ever used our bedroom, kitchen, bathroom and living room. We didn’t need those other bedrooms and it just felt like a waste of space. Living in a tiny home also changes your mindset when it comes to stuff. You start asking yourself “Do I really need this”?
How has living in a tiny home impacted your finances?
When we started shopping around for houses, we were pretty discouraged by the houses within our budget. At this point, we have pretty much given up on living in a tiny house because in Ontario (Canada), tiny houses are not the norm. Most houses are at least 1,500 square feet, if not more.
Most of the houses we looked at were huge but very run-down and needed a lot of updates to make it livable. Then, out of the blue, we went to the open house and instantly fell in love. Our house ended up costing $145,000, which was right within our budget. Although the house is small, we have a beautiful double lot (132×132) which is exactly what we wanted.
By staying within our budget, we are able to live comfortably and have some extra money to travel and complete some cosmetic renovations on our house. We feel so much better paying a mortgage every month instead of rent, because we know that our money is paying for our house.
Compared to the 3 bedroom house that we were renting, we are paying about 3 times less for our utility bills which is pretty amazing.
How has it impacted you health?
We haven’t really noticed any physical impacts on our health. However, emotionally and mentally, it feels amazing to finally have a place to call home.
What advice do you have for people who want to get into a tiny home?
- Practice first! Living tiny takes effort; especially if you’re not a minimalist. Take all of the things you currently have, put it in the space you plan on living in, and try to make it work. If you find yourself tripping over your stuff, you have too much stuff!
- Create flexible outfits. For me, the thing that took up the most room was my clothes. With the help of Pinterest, I created some capsule wardrobes for every season which allowed me to get rid of most of my clothing.
- Find some creative solutions for storage. When we first moved in, Marc built some long term storage bins to store some seasonal things such as winter boots and coats, blankets, etc. Use the wasted space in your home and transform it into storage!
Thank you, Marc and Nat, for sharing your story! We look forward to hearing more about the convertible bus as well! Please keep us updated!
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