Little Space, Big Results: How To Set Up A Small Log Cabin For Maximum Efficiency

Tiny house living has become one of the largest home trends in the United States, and it’s not hard to see why: with lower utilities and mortgages, a small home is a great choice for those seeking to reduce expenses without sacrificing comfort. Some tiny homes are even portable, meaning that if you don’t like where you’re living, you can simply pack up and move without the hassle of selling your home and purchasing a new one. 

For those who love the more natural look, small log cabins provide a cozy abode that’s tranquil but stylish at the same time. However, their low square footage requires some careful planning in order to create a home that is relaxing yet highly efficient. Today, we’ll check out some top tips on setting up your small log cabin for success.

Reduce Your Belongings

This is one of the tried-and-true tactics for really enjoying your small cabin experience, and it doesn’t need to be painful, either. Many of us have things that we only use once or twice a year, which results in major clutter within a tiny home. 

While preparing to move into a smaller home, gather everything you own and consider how frequently you actually use it; don’t be idealistic about this and rationalize how often you might use it in the future, but instead consider how often it’s been utilized in the past and how easy it would be to rent or borrow.

For example, let’s say you bought a life jacket years ago for a boating trip but haven’t touched it in years. This is something that’s pretty easy to rent anywhere that you do personal recreation, so it can be easily given away or sold without sacrificing safety or comfort. Other things, such as a mixing stand, could be borrowed from a friend or even rented out from a lending library, just as with power tools or other equipment.

This can be a little tougher when it comes to items with sentimental value, but there’s no need to throw everything away: sit with your belongings and think about how much they mean to you. You wouldn’t want to give away a family heirloom, but maybe a souvenir statue from a trip can be let go. 

Invest In Sustainability For Lower Energy Usage

Many people choose tiny house living because they want to reduce their expenses as well as their impact on the environment overall, and it’s easy to understand why. Small cabins are naturally more energy efficient than their larger counterparts, as it takes less to heat and cool them; similarly, with fewer light sources and appliances, their electrical usage is lower. 

However, there are still ways to create an even more sustainable home through upgrades like solar panels, energy-efficient appliances, and LED lighting. One great choice, particularly for tiny homes, is to select smaller appliances with greater efficiency, or to forgo some of them altogether. This both reduces energy usage and frees up more space, which is at a premium in more petite homes. 

When purchasing appliances for your home, select those with the ENERGY STAR label; these have been certified by the Environmental Protection Agency to be highly energy efficient and, thus, cost-saving. At the ENERGY STAR website, you can explore the many products in all appliance categories that have received this certification.

Select Multipurpose Products

You don’t want to think just about energy efficiency, but space efficiency as well: this means thinking out of the box for ways to utilize a piece of furniture or product in multiple ways. 

There are a variety of different ways you can do this, but one of the best options is furniture that has built-in storage, which will help you stow away everything you need without making you feel claustrophobic. For example, you may choose a bed that has drawers underneath it where you can store all your clothing, or elect to use ottomans instead of chairs so that you can stow things away. 

Utilize Walls And Exterior Space For Storage

Vertical space is deeply unappreciated in the average home, but it can make all the difference in your comfort when living in a smaller home. There’s an artistry to this, as you don’t want to feel like the walls are closing in on you, so think carefully about how much you would actually like to store vertically. 

Things like shelving, pegs for dishes, racks, and hangers will help keep things off the floor and allow you to move more freely throughout your space. They can also look quite beautiful when done right, such as spray painting hooks to add a pop of color throughout the home. 

When considering vertical space, you should also think about how much you can conceivably store outside of your home as well. This will greatly depend on the climate of your area, as well as the safety of your community, but there are ways to secure your belongings that will keep them safe from both theft and the weather. 

For example, you may choose to put up a small shed that you can lock, and you can store things like your bike and power tools that you can’t bear to part with. When you have your cabin installed and put in the porch stairs, you might even consider having the contractor create a storage space under the stairs with a padlocked door, which will free up space without endangering your belongings. 


Small homes are a very freeing form of habitation, as they let you focus on what’s really important to you: the less belongings you have, the less you have to worry about. However, they do require some ingenuity to maximize your enjoyment, particularly when it comes to storage and energy efficiency. Everything that comes into your little abode should have a place and a purpose – ideally, multiple purposes – so that you have everything you need and nothing you don’t. By thinking carefully about what you want to emphasize in your cabin, you can create a relaxing, natural environment that will be the envy of even those with 3,000 square foot homes. 

Elizabeth Willett (MA)
Elizabeth Willett (MA)
Elizabeth Willett has an M.A in health and fitness, is an experienced trainer, and enjoys teaching children about healthy eating habits. She loves to cook nutritious meals for her family.


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