How Others Live...Happily Ever After in 351 Sq Ft.
Ren and Natale on October 13, 2007, were at a restaurant celebrating Ren's 31st birthday with some close friends. They came home that night, in rural Ashley Falls, Massachusetts, to their house in flames. They had just recently renovated the 1,400 square foot ranch house. After a sleepless night at a friends, they came back to find that their entire house, as well as Natale's shop, where he worked from, was completely destroyed. Personal belongings, like wet and tattered wedding photos and files were blowing everywhere on their property. Ren described the seen as, "...nauseating to have all your personal stuff blowing around. You feel so exposed."
After weeks of clearing out their home and throwing almost all but what they had with them that night at the restaurant away, they discussed what they should do next. Build? Move? Run off to a different country? But they liked their jobs, and ultimately just wanted to be able to get back on their property as soon as possible. The solution? combining two 1940's cottages on their property that someone gave Natale back in 2003. They spent the next 9 weeks combining and renovating them into a 351 sq ft house. The adjustment took some getting used to but they both have agreed that this trial and downsizing has brought their relationship even closer.