From Maximalist to Minimalist!
While the market was hot, we downsized from a large 2 story house on a full basement and a floored attic to a…. motorhome. This was not the plan at all but I like to swing from one extreme to the other before hopefully settling in the middle. We sold the house two years before we intended to just because the price was right and planned to let the chips fall where they may and “flow with go” (MMA reference).
So while looking for a rental (I don’t plan to buy until the last child moves out and prices drop) we ended up in a Fleetwood Southwind 32VS motorhome. Long story short, before we even considered selling our house we where helping clean, repair and prep a family members motorhome for sale. Ironically we are temporarily living in it now. More ironically, we are actually interested in purchasing it now. It’s kind of nice once cleaned up and repaired and our dog Sadie loves it with her panoramic window view.
Full list and links of products and material on RV Shop page
So how did I fit a giant house worth of stuff in a Motorhome?
I didn’t. It was time to downsize and downsize we did. We donated a lot to friends, family and charity. We sold very cheap a few large items like the dining room set and some exercise and gym equipment like elliptical etc. Some we left to the new home owners including the training room with full padded floor and walls equipped with heavy bags, speed bag, double end bag, agility ladder, cones etc.
More importantly we made nearly daily trips to the free city dump. Sometimes twice a day. As somewhat of a hoarder this was difficult for me at first but got easier and then liberating and enjoyable. I had no idea the subtle amount of stress and anxiety “stuff” carries. The more I dumped the better I felt. Like I said, I go from one extreme to the other.
OK but surely I didn’t give away or throw away a basement full of tools and material did I?
Nope! I bought two shipping containers (that I overpaid for, not a buyers market) then rented one small climate controlled UHaul storage unit for the appliances and furniture we kept.
I will make a full post on how I organized these shipping containers and the diy magnetic brackets used to hang material from the walls and ceiling.
Ok so now have to get used to making due with less and very tight quarters. We need to get organized and get some products that help with that etc. First though we have to deal with this heat. When the sun is out it bakes the walls so I wrapped the RV in Reflectix which dropped the temperature nearly 20 degrees. Now the air conditioning doesn’t have to run very long or at all which is good because its loud.
Time to get organized and make the most of tight quarters. This is a big change. Items need to be accessible without great hassle ect. We have lots of storage in the outside RV compartments but thats not convenient especially if raining.
Time for some new products even though I am claiming to be a minimalist now. Some of these I really find useful and wish I knew about before RV life like the perfect tear paper towel holder.
More detail on each to come soon.
Ok now we need to make this a comfortable home for Sadie. We’ll jus make the whole dash a dog bed. Then add 3 more dog beds scattered throughout. Thats a good start. Maybe a fancy new dog dish. I guess that minimalism talk was a lie to myself.
Oh and she needs some fancy overpriced steps to get on and off the bed safely.
So I don’t really like these stupid steps to get in the RV. Even though the RV has hydraulic stabilizer posts, anytime someone steps on the cantilevered step it rocks the RV a little which is more than a little annoying depending on your mood. If you know, you know!
That has to end and end now. So after exhaustive research looking for the perfect product I finally settled on a less than perfect, overpriced product EZ-Access Fortress Aluminum Platform with Stairs. Even thought it’s just temporary it was well worth the cost to me, both to minimize the frustration of the RV rocking and reduce the chance of injury (twisted ankle, slip, fall etc.) when entering or exiting especially with hands full with groceries, laptops, whatever. Trust me on this, it’s worth it. A person who criticized the purchase as unnecessary, later bought it from me. Don’t cut corners when it comes to products that make life easier and safer. Find other areas in your life to cut corners.
I also added garage tiles which allow water and debris to flow under them helping to keep our shoes and RV clean. I first had the bad idea of using deck tiles but as I did more research I realized these rubberized garage tiles would be better for my purpose and cheaper.
Waterpressure was a major issue that need to be fixed. The shower was not much more than a trickle so I took out the stupid low flow inline filter and added my old hose sediment filter in series with a higher flow canister filter. If I were to purchase a sediment filter just of the RV I would get the smaller iSpring listed here. I bought this larger one for my house because it has a much larger sediment trap and space wasn’t an issue. I will make a full post on use both in my house and the RV.
I added a magazine rack, some home su ker iddy, key racks, coat racks, phone holders, remote holders etc.
More content to come along with videos.
Put this somewhere towards the end –
Ok so now we have minimized and downsized. Is tiny home big living for real, are we about that life now? It was fun new change of pace for temporary until we found a rental house. Then we discovered it was much more difficult than we thought to find a decent rental in a good school district for less than a fortune. That added to some growing frustrations but then… it got cold. It got real un-fun then.
Full list of products and materials on RV Shop page