05/27/2015 11:53 EDT | Updated 05/28/2015 08:59 EDT

Tiny Home Is Enough Space For This Ohio Family Of Four

"There’s lots of wasted space in normal houses that you don’t get in a tiny house."

As her family prepares to scale down their living space by 3,000 square feet, Kelly Rye is having a tough time parting with some books.

She has an extensive collection, with titles by authors such as Chaim Potok and Thomas Cahill.

She'll have to pare it down before she, her husband Jamie, their son and daughter move from their 3,000 single-family home in Toledo, Ohio, into a 400-square-foot house at the end of the summer.

"There's lots of wasted space in normal houses that you don't get in a tiny house," Kelly told the Toledo Blade.

When she and Jamie bought their house in the city's Old West End neighbourhood for US$121,250, they initially envisioned it as a "dream home" and a place for "community living."

But they eventually began to wonder about ways in which they could live in a more sustainable fashion without any debt.

They looked at new dwellings such as a renovated school bus or a camper. But Jamie also harboured a longstanding interest in the tiny house movement.

The movement, which is growing in the United States (and also taking hold in Canada), draws people who are looking for reduced housing costs and a lower carbon footprint, among other attractants.

Tiny homes can average anywhere between 100 and 400 square feet in size, and cost around $23,000, according to an infographic produced by Custom Made last year.

Blueprints for the Ryes' home show that they plan to build a house with a master bedroom with a queen-sized Murphy bed. They're looking to set aside a separate loft space for the kids and have a bathroom with a composting toilet.

In joining the movement, Jamie has made new friends like the Kasl family, who have been living in a 267-square-foot home near Minnesota's Twin Cities for approximately seven months.

Kim Kasl has documented their lifestyle on a blog titled, Bless This Tiny House.

Let's go! #BlessThisTinyHouse #TinyKaslFamily #TinyHouse

A photo posted by Kim Kasl (@kimkasl) on

#TinyHouse #TinyKaslFamily #BlessThisTinyHouse #Sunshine

A photo posted by Kim Kasl (@kimkasl) on

In it, she talks about how much she relishes having a space she can make her own.

"We can make art, mistakes and memories in our home, and it will always be forgiven and never hidden," Kim wrote. "Our Tiny House doesn't have to look perfect for anyone else because it's just perfect for us.

Like the Kasl family's home, the Ryes hope to build a home on wheels, and locate it on a friend's property.

But first, they have to downsize, a process that Kelly has been documenting on social media.

While she's had to part with some books, there is one text that should prove useful as she and her family transition to a smaller space.

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