Small Spaces: Accessibility & Micro Living, Can it Co-Exist?

A group of tiny homes designed by The Small House Catalog | Photo courtesy The Small House Catalog

A group of tiny homes designed by The Small House Catalog | Photo courtesy The Small House Catalog

It should come as no surprise that the rising cost of residential real estate is driving home buyers, both new and old alike, to seek out smaller abodes when making a home buying purchase.  With an emphasis on lifestyle amenities, location, and outdoor living spaces, the desired new home incorporates more features into less square footage and, often times, results in a more efficient way of living.

But where it has traditionally been younger buyers, especially first time home buyers residing in large, urban cities with a high cost of living, who've sought out residences that have been considered undersize or even miniscule by today's standards, today the aging population has shown a strong preference for smaller living and an easier, more relaxed way of living not to mention a desire to remain in single family, detached homes rather than multi-family or senior-living complexes.  Recent home buying studies have shown that not only did 44% of all home buyers purchase a home under 2,000 square feet in 2015, but that 80% of the home buyers in the Boomer category were more likely to want to downsize than to up-size.

Photo by Juan Baraja, courtesy Realtor.com

Photo by Juan Baraja, courtesy Realtor.com

The market has taken notice of the desire to live with less and the home buyer's small space, becoming flooded with thousands of developers, manufacturers, websites, publications, and resources devoted to the the small house trend, some even highlighting a secondary trend towards Micro Living, taking up residence in homes typically under 300 square feet, very small in comparison to the modern home.  But, where small and micro space living can be wonderfully ideal for the physically ambulatory and traditionally flexible younger buyer, what about the Boomers?

Home buying trends show Boomers are either looking to stay in homes the same size as their current or are looking to downsize |Graph courtesy Trulia.com

Home buying trends show Boomers are either looking to stay in homes the same size as their current or are looking to downsize |Graph courtesy Trulia.com

I believe that it is safe to say that someone who may find it difficult to maneuver normal architectural barriers in a traditional home will find it near impossible to climb a ladder to a second story sleeping loft or to make use of storage spaces that may be out of reach.  The question begs to be asked - when it comes to micro living can the small space and accessibility co-exist?  This week, Corinne Gail Interior Design will explore just that topic, sharing with you a series of posts dedicated to highlighting products and solutions which blend accessibility and efficiency into the small space.  Of course, our Architectural, Kitchen, Bathroom, and Furniture solutions aren't just for the small space; all can easily be adapted to both the existing and new larger home.

Do you have specific questions?  Feel free to message us and we'll try to incorporate our answer into one of this week's posts.

New Boomer buyers are showing a preference for single family homes over mutli-family homes, even those in senior care type facilities | Graph courtesy Washington Post

New Boomer buyers are showing a preference for single family homes over mutli-family homes, even those in senior care type facilities | Graph courtesy Washington Post

Featured Image: Karoleena's "Kicking Horse" pre-fab home incorporates 2 bedrooms and one bath as well as modern amenities into just 945 square feet.  Image courtesy Karoleena.

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Brandon Smith, LEED AP is the interior designer turned Founder and Principal Editor of DCoopMedia, a design & luxury lifestyle digital media development firm. With a focus on redefining how the individual defines luxury, Brandon develops content for the firms’ quarterly journal and blog, theTwentySIX,  and moderates the weekly chat on Twitter #DesignLUX (Thursdays at 1pmPT/4pmET).  A lover of details and addicted to Diet Coke, he can often be found on Twitter @dcoopsd or via the blog D’Scoop.

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Corinne Gail Interior Design did not receive compensation for this post. All images copyright Corinne Gail Interior Design unless otherwise noted and may not be used without permission.