Simply Car-Free

Though not directly related to tiny houses, Simply Car-free is right on when it comes to simplifying your life, which in my opinion is part of the tiny house movement. My friend and fellow blogger Tammy Stobel who publishes the RowdyKittens blog has written a wonderful ebook that I would highly recommend to you. Quoting Tammy from a portion of her book on Rethinking Necessities & Overcoming Fear I think this can be applied to a person looking at downsizing to a tiny house.

“Our simple living journey has taught me that less is more. Having less stuff and no car in my life has helped me establish the priorities of building solid relationships, being debt free and living with less stress.

Success is not defined by whether or not you own a car. In fact, I think it’s just the opposite. The intended function of cars is comfort and convenience. However, cars represent an enormous amount of time and money. Because of the work stress I endured to maintain this depreciating investment, I felt inconvenienced by my cars. By selling the cars, I have more time and money. A surprising side effect of selling our cars was becoming debt-free.”

Five years ago, we lived the “normal middle class” suburban lifestyle. We were newlyweds with flashy rings, living in a two-bedroom apartment, driving two cars, commuting long distances to work and living well beyond our means. The idea of living without a car didn’t seem possible.

By changing our perspective and planning small steps, we learned lessons that simplified our lives and got us out of debt. Going car-free was part of our downsizing process and was one of our first big goals toward living intentionally.

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Elizabeth Goertz - March 17, 2010 Reply

That’s a great add, but not really a post. Not much info for tiny house readers except how to buy it.

    Kent Griswold - March 17, 2010 Reply

    Good point Elizabeth and I guess I was really promoting her book. I have restructured the post a bit so it relates a little better to tiny house enthusiasts though it still is an ad.

Heather - March 17, 2010 Reply

I think living car-free is a great plan if you live in a mild climate with shops close by and in a city with good transit and safe bike routes, and not on a acreage. I would love to be able to walk to work or better still, work at home. We need to change our old-fashioned thinking (especially employers and city/transit planners). This could really work.

Amy Lawrence - March 17, 2010 Reply

All around wonderful idea for city folk and those who live in flat ish areas… However it would not be practical for folks like me who live on the a mountain. Sure the 5 miles down would be easy but the 5 miles up is a whole other story.

Bob Holecek - March 17, 2010 Reply

Not very practical. Less is more, send $9.95. Sounds like a money maker to me

    Heather - March 17, 2010 Reply

    Re: Moneymaker. Perhaps she writes to make an income. Nothing wrong with that. Everyone needs to make a living (unless you are retired, etc.) and it’s probably a really good deal at that price with lots of helpful info. You don’t work for free do you Bob?

frank - March 17, 2010 Reply

If your goal is to live sustainably, then living without a car has a bigger impact than living in a tiny house. Supposedly NYC has lower energy use per person than any other area of the US. Living in a dense urban area allows one to walk, cycle or take transit for most trips. Reducing energy use by having shared walls in multi-unit buildings helps too. Tiny houses are nice but they are only an incremental improvement on the typical suburb.

Elizabeth - March 18, 2010 Reply

I love the idea of the tiny house, but I also am cognizant that NYC, as mentioned above, is considered the “greenest” city in the country. Shared walls and high density allow people to cut construction costs and live in car-free communities. The wonderful tiny houses often featured on this site are not inhabitable without a lot of utility infrastructure and/or driving.

Amber - March 18, 2010 Reply

Car-free doesn’t work for everyone, but most people could drive less. I live in Los Angeles. We don’t have good transit nor bike infrastructure, but I still make many of my trips by bike and always enjoy myself.

“Not very practical”

Convenience is destroying the environment. Not to mention our bodies.

Hart - December 12, 2010 Reply

In a time when fossil fuels are killing the planet, commuting by bicycle becomes a heroic act of resistance.

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