Should You Downsize and Rent Your Bigger House?

Should You Downsize and Rent Your Bigger House?

Living in a smaller home is a popular concept that addresses the idea of less is more. Those who wish to live a simpler life with less “stuff” have embraced it with gusto.

But of course, having less stuff isn’t the only reason people downsize. It could be from a desire to live in a more environmentally friendly way. Or, the reason for living in a smaller home could be financial in nature. No matter the reason, should you downsize and rent your bigger house?


According to the US Census Bureau, the average size of a new single family home in 2016 was 2,640 square feet. That’s a lot of house you could rent to someone else for some very positive reasons.

Less Stuff

One of the obvious reasons you should downsize and rent your bigger house to someone else is to have less stuff. The less stuff you have the less you have to maintain, clean, and replace.

Have you ever donated items or held a garage sale? The process of going through your stuff to let some of it go can be very freeing. If you weren’t using the items anyway you may as well generate a little bit of cash to use elsewhere in your budget.

Lower Bills

Having lower bills is another positive reason you should downsize and rent your bigger house. When you have less square feet you’ll have lower utility bills and smaller rent or mortgage payments.

When you have lower monthly bills you can use the excess money in your budget for other things. You can also use it to pay down debt, invest, travel, or reach other financial goals.

Creates an Income Stream

An additional reason you should downsize and rent your bigger house is to generate another income stream. This can provide increased stability for your finances by way of an investment.


There are some negatives as well, so you should think about them before you downsize and rent your bigger house.

Increased Wear and Tear

Whenever you have a smaller area to live in you will naturally have increased wear and tear to those areas. This can actually make some expenses higher rather than lower.

As an example you may have to increase flooring sooner as a result of increased traffic over a smaller area.

Unconsidered Costs

It is possible there are other costs you may not consider if you downsize and rent your bigger house.

For instance, you will likely have moving costs associated with downsizing to a smaller home or apartment. You may also have storage costs if you can’t get everything to fit into your new place. Depending on the size of your new home you may have to purchase custom furniture or appliances to get them to fit.

Renting your bigger house has upkeep costs as well as legal fees and other expenses. These need to be thought out before you make any decisions.

Getting on Each Other’s Nerves

Something else to consider before you downsize and rent your bigger house is that it could cause relationship issues. The fact is the more people you put into a small space the more you get on each other’s nerves.

Therefore, living together in harmony in a space smaller than you are used to could make everyone feel cramped. Not only that, but you may have more things than should be in a smaller home. This can magnify the problems of living in a tight space.

There is a certain appeal to living in a smaller home with less stuff. But whether or not you should downsize and rent your bigger house is questionable. To help you decide, think over the pros and cons carefully first.

What do you think of the idea of living in a smaller home and renting your larger one?

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Written By
Sydney White is a Texas-born stay at home mom who enjoys spending time with her family, bargain hunting and, of course, writing. She is currently the editor-in-chief of


  1. My plan is to one day sell this house and move to one level or ranch style house with a bigger yard so I can work on the yard. I always love a nice manicured, beautifully landscaped backyard. One that’s across the park would be a bonus. Living in Chicago, we only get to enjoy our backyards about 7 months in a year if we get lucky.

  2. My parents are retired and were then at the time we lived with them, but they keep themselves busy and knew that we also had our own lives as well. I love your comment about having an open mind/ flexibility with living arrangements when FI minded. Moving in with parents, getting roommates, downsizing, etc can be extremely beneficial to help boost your savings or when paying off debt.

  3. It must be noted that when you are planning to rent a car, you should be careful since you need to ensure the car will serve you well for the entire period you rent it. People who have already used the car rental services advise that a person planning to rent a car should ensure to consider comfort, reliability as well as the function of the car rental. There is a step by step procedure that one needs to satisfy first before you decide to rent a car.

  4. Our house is pretty small by modern standards, but we’re thinking about doing this when the kids go to college (still 13 years away). We’re actually considering building a little guest house in the backyard to rent out and then use for ourselves when we’re older. But I hadn’t fully considered how the “getting on each other’s nerves” issue might play out if we’re both retired and hanging out in a small home all day 🙂

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