Posted by Dave on October 31, 2012
This is a guest post by Dave, who is also looking to retire no later than 45, but unlike Tim has no kids and doesn’t want any. Dave is from Ontario and is working towards his CGA certification.
I don’t know if it’s becoming popular again, but I’ve read a few articles online in the past week or so which involved people committing to the 100 thing challenge. In taking part in this, people have cut their belongings down to 100 things (in some cases less). I really enjoy reading about how people do this, and would really like to get close to that point as well, but I think it would be pretty difficult to maintain a 100 thing inventory.
I’ve read quite a few of the stories of people involved in getting down to owning 100 things, and I have to admit, I’m jealous of how freeing it would be to do this. There wouldn’t be much to clean up, to fix, or really to buy, because anytime you purchased anything, you’d have to get rid of something. I can understand the attraction to this movement but for me, I don’t know how I would get to this point.
In order to get to the point of 100 things I would have to stop the vast majority of hobbies or interests. Tools take up a lot of the allotment, but not having tools would seem to cost more money. I like to make my own beer – this takes up a considerable amount of space, but (so far) has saved me some money on something I consume fairly regularly.
By limiting the amount of stuff I would have, it would definitely focus the hobbies I was involved in because I would only be able to manage one at a time, rather than several that I have going on right now. This sort of focus would be good, but may be boring at the same time.
My wife and I are constantly trying to get rid of stuff. This seems to be a modern day problem, being able to accumulate enough stuff that some people need to move into larger houses. When my wife and I were looking at houses, we were amazed how full the number of people who had closets which were just rammed full of things. We, along with many people are continually fighting a battle against stuff.
Ideally, I could get down to 100 things, enough stuff that I would be easily able to live in a Tiny House. As it stands now, my 1,000 square foot home is relatively clutter-free, but there is still some room for improvement. I just don’t really see the point in getting rid of stuff only to need a tool, some sort of sporting equipment, or something else that I have stored in my basement. Additionally, things such as seasonal decorations (especially Christmas) just seem wasteful to throw out.
This topic seems quite similar though to an Early Retirement plan. I am not going to tell someone who has achieved this sort of achievement that they’re wrong, I just realize that it doesn’t really work for me.
Do you think you could get down to 100 things? If no, what do you think would hold you back?