02/11/2015 11:46 am ET Updated Apr 13, 2015

7 Benefits to Living in a Smaller Home

Home ownership is part of the American Dream and to some that means having the biggest house on the block. While the size of one's home is truly a matter of preference, it may not be a practical reality for many. Globalization and the digital age have made it so people are changing jobs and moving more frequently. Empty nesters don't need all the extra space with grown-up children. College and graduate school students may not find opportunities locally so they may need to relocate to where the jobs are.

With larger homes comes the responsibility of maintenance and upkeep which takes up time and money, especially if you have a busy life.

Here are seven benefits to living in a smaller home over a larger one:

1. Lower Mortgage Payments
With less square footage and acreage comes less mortgage payments. You may be able to pay it off quicker than if you purchased a larger space.

2. Lower Maintenance Costs
While big, beautiful homes on HGTV seem like a dream, one thing the network television channel fails to present is the overall maintenance cost. With a smaller space you can do most of the maintenance work yourself and save money the cost of labor.

3. Less Hoarding
With less space, you're less likely to hoard or have a collection of unused tchotchkes.

4. Less Clutter
Having little space will require you to ruthlessly edit your possessions. You are forced to rethink buying habits and make decisions about what you need versus what you want.

5. More Green
With smaller homes you will use less natural resources. You won't need a sprinkler system for the large lawn. Your heat and electricity bills will go down as your space won't require as much energy. You'll save both money and the environment.

6. More Manageable Renovations
By virtue of having a small house, any renovations can be done easy, quickly and in much less time than a full scale renovation in a larger home.

7. Smarter Spaces
In a smaller home, you can be more creative in maximizing square footage. Walls and ceilings can be fully utilized with open shelves and organizers. You can be clever with more built-ins and storage solutions. If you're going for a super small space, you could take cues from these Tiny Home owners' smart storage ideas.

A big home may still be a dream for some, but a smaller home may be a smarter and more flexible choice for those who want to save money and time.