How did we adjust to downsizing from a 4500+ sq foot home to a 3 bed apartment?

downsizing isn't so bad

Our daily routine for the summer.

Adjusting to Downsizing

Okay, so we were very spoiled and had a fantastic home.  We were now living in a 3 bedroom apartment about the size of our Master Suite plus an extra bedroom.  We thought we sold so much and did a great job of de-cluttering, but the remainder needed to fit into the apartment or storage.  Somehow it did all fit, but we only wanted to put items in storage that we really had to keep.  Luckily for us the home buyers wanted a bulk of our furniture, so we sold quite a bit to them.

The Temporary Apartment

In the apartment, our bedrooms consist of a mattress, on the floor, a small bookshelf and clothes in the closet.  A few toys and stuffed animals came too, but after our 3 months in the apartment many will be donated and a couple “Lovies”  get to go on the adventure with us. The dining room is our office and Alan and I share 1 desk. The family room has our couch, love seat and recliner.  Most items we have with us are all scheduled to depart our lives at the end of our lease.  A few items will go rest in our storage unit for the duration of our adventure.


The first 2 weeks were quite an adjustment. We were still unpacking boxes and trying to figure out where things would go. The kitchen was a quarter of the size, even the fridge was tiny.  Over time we made minor changes, to make things work. No more bulk ketchup or gallons of milk.  Time to get smaller items, next time they were needed.  This isn’t a bad thing, as we are only here temporarily anyway. It was just a mind shift and life adjustment.  This was a perfect transition period for us to get used to smaller spaces. In Europe, it will just be more of the same. So why not make this one adjustment among familiar things in a familiar country?

New Routines

During our 3rd week here, we were finally getting into a routine.  Heck there were several perks we were also discovering.  The sink clogged, we didn’t have to fix it! We just filled out a maintenance request, they came, they fixed!  It was magic!  A few days later, a problem with the dryer, same routine. Hey this is kinda nice. We don’t have to pay or fix it. We can just focus on things we want to do, like swim.  The pool is about 50 feet from our balcony and we go to the pool just about every day, weather permitting.  Here in the South some afternoon thunderstorms can mess up the pool plans.

Our weekends are no longer spent maintaining a huge home and yard. We get to do fun things like go swimming, hiking, walking, and do a little geocaching. This adjustment isn’t so bad after all.  We aren’t at each other’s throats in a smaller space and are actually enjoying our time together. The kids play outside far more than they did at the house. Go figure, we had a beautiful home with huge yard and all the space they could ever want. Yet here at the apartment, they love to go out and explore. Probably because it is all new, but they are already making friends here and they can’t wait to go out and play. We are living just fine with out much “stuff” and enjoying it.

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3 thoughts on “How did we adjust to downsizing from a 4500+ sq foot home to a 3 bed apartment?

  1. I did the great purge thing too and it was tough to get it done. For me, I finally had to take the advice of a friend – buy my plane ticket and that gave me my date out of here and a benchmark as to when things HAD to get done. I probably kept to many things and didn’t sell my home (I am renting it) but I am also WORKING from abroad and it doesn’t always leave much time for anything else except that – work. ¡Buena suerta!

  2. this is just great……isn’t it amazing how you can find so many pluses you didn’t anticipate in living in such cramped quarters….it’s nice to be able to do what you want rather than always ‘fixing and keeping up’ the house.

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