A New Experiment in Tiny Living

We’re about to embark on a new adventure, downsizing again, this time into a 3.5m by 6m ‘studio’ annnex. It’s basically an experiment in tiny house living, and we’re daft-excited.

First off, let me come clean. The planning permission we have for the annex is for an extension to the house. In order to comply with the law, we have to maintain frequent access to the main house, to use the kitchen for example. Our preference would be to live in the annex as a separate building, but as we can’t do this, we’ll rent the rooms in the main house on the basis we are live in landlords.

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Second off, let me come even cleaner. We’ve already done this once, having lived full time in a 6m by 2.2m motorhome for two years. So we have a good idea that we can cope (thrive) in a small space living together as a couple. The motorhome was different in the sense we were on the road at the time, moving every day or two somewhere else, so it was kind of a room with 500 views, while the annex is firmly located in the English Midlands with a view of the back of the local shops.

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So we can’t really claim to be moving full time into a tiny house. But we are downsizing our remaining possessions so everything we own (except the furniture in the rented house) will fit in the annex. Ju’s been incredibly busy on eBay and trips to the charity shop, but all told it’s taken us maybe 4 or 5 years of downsizing to be rid of say 90% of our stuff. The remaining 10% is more than many folks in the world would hope to amass in a lifetime.

Why are we not simply renting out this place and heading off to the sun/fjords/beaches/sea? Good question. Mainly to enable us to retain a small bit of the UK where we can live when we want to be here to visit or support our families, maybe if we’re ill, when we feel the urge to work or perhaps when we’re simply tired of being on the road and need a break.

By the time the next post comes the builders (who’ve done a fabulous job) will have finished and we’ll have laid the floor and moved in. Wow, we really can’t wait to get in there. I just need to get half of these tools sold now…

Cheers, Jay

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10 Comments

  1. I love the way you think your selfs out of the conventional life into one that fits you and your goals. You are inspirational.

  2. @Glen, hi! Thanks for the encouragement – I’ve kept one eye on your blog and the static van looks very comfortable indeed and the site looks fab, a great solution. Hope you guys are feeling strong and thanks again for dropping us a line :-). Jay

    @Colin: thanks very much. A few young lads came up to us in (Plovdiv, in Bulgaria. Not the richest of places as you might imagine. They wanted to try out their English. One of them had a T-Shirt which read ‘Opportunity is Everywhere’. I looked at him as he shyly tried out a few alien words on us and thought to myself: if this little chap believes what’s on his shirt, shame on me for not bloody well seeing the massive opportunity which surrounded me back home in the UK. We’re just taking a teeny weeny bit of that opportunity and making it work for us mate. Cheers, Jay

  3. Congratulations, on your latest “tiny house” living project. I’m sure you will be “off” to new adventures soon. Love getting updates on what your doing.

    • Thanks Paul and Christine, good to hear from you! How are tricks in Bulgaria? Is your renovation completed? Started any new ones? Would be fab to hear how you’re getting on too (if you get a mo, drop us a line with maybe a photo or two at julieandjason@ourtour.co.uk). Cheers, Jay

  4. You are both my kind of crackers(in the nicest way) I love your way of thinking. Good on you for setting plans and being totally unconventional.
    I look forward to your future blogs.
    Good Luck
    Muriel J

  5. Good to here news from you both again. I am a bit confused though you keep talking about a house then show pictures of a cold store and an industrial mixer? Are you living in a bakery? Good luck with your plans.

    • Hi Kev, the place used to be a butchers shop! The front room was the shop, with a two bed semi attached to it. The side of the house is a small concrete yard, which had a cold store stood in it. At the back a 6m by 4m building stood with two more cold rooms and industrial meat cooking/preparation areas and kit. We’ve renovated the house and shop, rented the shop, and are now just finishing off converting the building at the back into an annex. Hope that explains it – I know it’s all a bit crackers….!

  6. Hi Julie and Jay.
    Good to hear your news. Sounds like a challenging project you’ve taken on. We’ve made our money by renovating property too – i know how hard it can be! We sold up almost 3 years ago now, but we’re currently heading back towards the uk with thoughts of buying us a ‘base’ there ..we’ll see.
    Good luck with everything. Hope it all comes together for you!
    Cheers, Peter and Elaine
    http://www.heidihymer.wordpress.com

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