Tiny cottage 580 sq ft - too small for two adults plus toddler?

(26 Posts)
Moominmamma86 Wed 13-May-15 09:16:54

Hello,

My partner and I are need to move and our budget is very tight. The town we would like to live in tends to be very expensive but if we live there we can get rid of our car which will help the budget a lot. Yesterday we went to look at a place which is in a perfect location, right opposite a lovely plaground, moor and other nice areas to play and walk, five minutes walk from a very good nursery and with a little garden. In some ways it's ideal but it's just very tiny - a two up, two down old-fashioned cottage (but refurbished). The kitchen is much smaller than I thought but we could fit a drop-leaf table in and eat there. The fridge-freezer is in the (small) living room) because there just isn't space in the kitchen. The bathroom is soo small - a narrow bath and the room itself just has enough space next to the bath to get in, pretty much! It has a good size main bedroom and a really small second bedroom. Other than that there's the front room which again is small but manageably so.

My question really is, is 580 sq feet with such tiny rooms going to be enough for a family of three? My partner and I will both be working so we won't be there all the time although I do have the school holidays off work. It's within our budget in the area we want and the garden, although also very small, is a bonus. I can see some positives about living small-scale but this really is quite tiny! If we don't go for it soon I suspect it will be gone but I'm having trouble deciding. It's not quite what we want long-term but for renting for a year or two maybe it's ok? Has anybody got experience living somewhere like this as a family, could it work? I'm leaning towards yes simplly because on our budget there's bound to be some doenside but keep having doubts.

Thanks

FromMeToYou Wed 13-May-15 09:41:36

For the right location I would put up with anything. Unless you have very space consuming hobbies? Can you link to the house? BecauseI'mnosey So we can help you make the right decision.

WingsClipped Wed 13-May-15 09:43:33

We downsized at the beginning of last year from a massive 3 bed detached with large kitchen diner, extended, large garden to a tiny 2 bed cottage 543sq ft. It's as you described- 2 up 2 down with loads of charm.
It was the best decision we've made. Although in our case we still have the big house and the additional purchase was to move to a nicer area. We have since had a new addition to the family and I can still see us being here for at least 5 more years. DD1 is 3.5 at the moment. The main thing is making sure living space is enough, that is where I spend most of my time. Bedrooms are just needed for sleep so don't need to be massive.
Positives: Cleaning and tidying is quicker. We are more picky about purchases now that we don't have a big house to fill with 'stuff' and as a result, we live a more minimalistic lifestyle. Home is cosy and snuggly and I've decorated with light colors to brighten up the place but with lots of textures- rugs and cushions etc to make it all very homely. You have to be careful about furniture. Everything we have we love and try to buy things which are multifunctional or clever I.e dining tables which extend, storage which works as additional seating.
Negatives: if you love to entertain large groups of people on a regular basis then it probably won't work for you. Having said that we've had 20+ people coming over for DD's birthday before and they all fitted in the lounge/diner so it is doable but only for casual occssions.

Stinkersmum Wed 13-May-15 09:44:49

Sounds way too small. My mother has a 785sqft edwardian terrace which is gorgeous. It's just about big enough with only her living there. I couldn't imagine 2 adults a toddler and all the paraphernalia that comes with it in a house nearly a 3rd smaller.

specialsubject Wed 13-May-15 09:52:28

it is tiny (apparently that is 53 sq m, and having done a lot of recent house hunting I know what that means) although I've seen smaller on new builds!

but it is a rental - so what the heck? Don't like it, shift in six months.

I certainly wouldn't buy it as it would be very tricky to resell.

WingsClipped Wed 13-May-15 10:05:31

Small space living isn't for everyone. Does the thought of downsizing and decluttering fill you with excitement or total dread? For us it was a chance to start afresh and get rid of all the crap we had accumulated.
Apartment Therapy is a great site for inspiration on small living.
I agree that as you are renting it isn't really a risk at all. For us we are not worried about reselling since there are other factors involved and not just size. We have lots of cottages of the same size on our road and they generally sell fine because they are a cheap(ish) way of living in a expensive location (in surrey) with good transport links-train station to Waterloo 5mins up the road, and good schools in the area.

WhatsItAllAbout123 Wed 13-May-15 10:52:42

Our last 2 bed flat was a similar size. Having lived in 1 bed flats previously, it felt massive to us! We had DC1 shortly after moving in and lived there for 18 months.

What is the storage like? Are there places to put the vacuum cleaner, ironing board and iron, mop and bucket, clothes airers / maidens etc? Is there somewhere to put the buggy? Can you park very close by to keep it in the car if not? Will your furniture physically fit in the space?

I find that so long as a place has good storage to hide the essentials so you're not tripping over them (like the vac, mop, ironing board etc), then it is fine to live in.

cestlavielife Wed 13-May-15 11:07:00

you could get keter storage for garden for buggies boxes and garden toys etc. it will be find to rent for couple years.

i got www.amazon.co.uk/Keter-Store-It-Out-Max/dp/B00H27JWLW is easy to put together and totally dry inside. you can also padlock it. much cheaper than paying monthly for a storage unit. tho you could rent storage if you needed too.

cestlavielife Wed 13-May-15 11:08:50

and it sounds really nice and good location wise. i say go for it.

Variousrandomthings Wed 13-May-15 11:10:30

If you can make it bigger long term then it's worth considering. Can you go up into the attic or extend in the future?

Is it worth looking at cheaper 1960's 70's houses

Preminstreltension Wed 13-May-15 11:15:00

This is the size of my flat that I brought up my toddler in (we moved when baby number 2 arrived). I loved it - easy, everything at hand, cosy, small heating bills!

You do have to be disciplined to live in a small space but honestly it's fine and I miss it. My bigger house is much messier than my flat was!

ouryve Wed 13-May-15 11:24:51

That's about 2/3 the size of my house! It'll be a squeeze, but it's do-able for a few years, particularly if you're handy for he shops, so lack of storage space is less of an issue.

MehsMum Wed 13-May-15 11:37:12

We had 4 DC in about 750sq ft (with a lot of that space taken up with chimneys and stairs). We coped.

580sq ft for 3 of you should be fine.

We used under-bed storage: gave us somewhere to shove the suitcases and the DC loved having high beds to leap off loudly early in the mornings.

Dinosaursdontgrowontrees Wed 13-May-15 11:37:45

We live in a tiny house 560sq ft with our toddler. It's fine. We see it as a challenge trying to sort out clever storage to use every possible space! grin we love our home and it's perfect for us!

mousmous Wed 13-May-15 11:45:52

we lived in a flat size for 5 years with 2dc.
it was fine. though we are happy to be in a bigger place now.

Teacuptravells Wed 13-May-15 11:49:00

Will you have room for a freezer? somewhere to put a mop, vaccuum? Will you have enough room in the kitchen if you bake/cook from scratch for flour/tins/vegetables. Our house is a bit bigger (not much) and we really struggle for kitchen space.

We do have 2 kids though that like craft/painting and there really isnt the space!

Moominmamma86 Wed 13-May-15 13:59:25

Thank you for the replies! I feel more positive about it now, it was just a surprise when we looked at it just how small it was - the photos managed to make it look almost roomy! We would definitely need to be disciplined about what we have there and find good storage options (thank you for the link cestlavielife). I don't know for sure if we'll get it but we've told the agents we would like to reserve it if the landlord is ok with fixing a couple of the kitchen cabinet doors which have gone a bit manky. The agents seemed to question the fact that we have a child and were thinking of moving there but as long as the landlord is ok with it I think we'll go for it and as we're renting, it's not the end of the world if at the end of 12 months we feel like we need to find something else. Less cleaning would be a major plus and I think with the right furniture and a few decorations it would be really cosy. Here is a link for the nosy amongst you! www.rightmove.co.uk/property-to-rent/property-43488439.html/svr/2124;jsessionid=65E0C38E5EFCFCABA736B3FF8C7219F4
It doesn't look in quite as good condition as these photos show because the current tenants haven't looked after it brilliantly, but I reckon it will be ok. I'm going to have a look at apartment therapy for ideas. Fingers crossed it will work out ok and since we're not going to be in all the time the space won't be such an issue for our little one (and for us)

Thanks again.

Moominmamma86 Wed 13-May-15 14:04:21

There is also an understairs cupboard for hoover etc. The fridge-freezer is just outside the kirchen in the livingroom which is a bit annoying, also I'm not sure if it belong to the current tenants. There's a small fridge with a freezer compartment in the kitchen. I would much prefer a bigger freezer but we could cope with that. It is near the local shops so we can easily buy little and often which I prefer anyway.

PotteringAlong Wed 13-May-15 14:08:15

It looks lovely!

CloserToFiftyThanTwenty Wed 13-May-15 14:09:32

I'd rent it but not buy it - I don't think that garden is small though!

Check out Ikea for space saving ideas

FromMeToYou Wed 13-May-15 15:07:46

That looks a really decent size actually. Have you seen the neighbour's brick outhouse in their garden? It looks like a dolls house! And allotments across the road. The top of the stairs looks a bit slippy with all that white paint, I would see about maybe putting a rubber backed rug there or something. Size wise it looks fine.

Moominmamma86 Wed 13-May-15 15:20:13

Honestly the garden is half the length it looks though! They were very clever with the photos, you'd have to look round it to get a sense of the size. But if it all goes through and we get it I think we'll be happy with it actually. I don't like that thing where the front door opens straight into the living room but it's a really sweet place, great location.

Khalinda Wed 13-May-15 15:29:57

The luxury of renting is that if you don't like it, it's not a big deal. As someone else said IKEA is your friend for cheap storage solutions.

sianihedgehog Wed 13-May-15 19:14:55

It looks great to me! We nearly bought a similar sized place.

Milllli Wed 13-May-15 23:39:01

I think its lovely and cosy and so done up really nicely. The garden could be laid to lawn and great for running up and down. smile

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now