Insider spoke with five tiny-home owners about how they assessed what they needed — and didn't need — when buying, renovating, and remodeling their small spaces.Alexis Monkhouse and her 2-year-old daughter live in a tiny house on wheels in Florida. Monkhouse documents their journey on the Instagram account @thistinyjourney. Monkhouse said that when she designed her home, she had a budget that allowed her to add luxury amenities, including a washer-dryer combination.Today, she wishes she had opted for a separate washer and dryer. Although the combo appliance takes up less space, Monkhouse said, in her experience, the dryer function takes too long to dry her clothes.Appliances that seem like they'll save space but don't get the job done aren't worth it in the end, she said.Monkhouse said she prefers her split unit for a handful of reasons.It's convenient because it offers heating and cooling in one appliance.Split units also mount to your walls, whereas bulky air-conditioning units often take up window space or require major renovations on your home.Also, the look of a split unit — which is slimmer than traditional air-conditioning systems — doesn't cramp her tiny home's style.Tim Davidson has lived in a 270-square-foot tiny home since 2017. His tiny house has a loft that leads to his bedroom.When designing the space, he opted for the staircase instead of a ladder for a handful of reasons.He knew a staircase would provide more mobility and safety. If he wants to grow old in his tiny home, a ladder isn't as accessible. He also wanted his cat, Oliver, to be able to access every inch of the small home.While the stairs take up more space than a ladder, he smartly optimized the staircase for both storage and seating.I recently found out about the Holy Grail— air fryers, Davidson told Insider.Now that he has an air fryer, the oven gets little use but takes up a huge chunk of space in his kitchen.It's just wasted space, he said. And I just hate washing dishes, so I might utilize that space for a dishwasher or something else.The couple said that when they started designing their two-story tiny house out of shipping containers, the bathtub was an easy item to sacrifice, as it simply wasn't necessary — a shower served the same purpose.Jaimie told Insider that she likely would've added one if she had young children.The couple, who records their journey on Instagram @that_tiny_life_love, made sure that each piece of furniture brought into their home served a function. Their living and kitchen space has just the essentials, including two barstools and a couch that seats two.Rebekah and her husband, Robert, live in a tiny house in Florida. They wanted to take advantage of the sunny weather and night sky, so they built an outdoor bathtub and shower.This saved the couple from installing the same appliances to their home's interior.They used the extra space to add fun amenities like a pizza oven.Sofia said when designing her tiny home, she considered whether each item brought her joy, whether it was beautiful or useful enough, and if it was something she felt she couldn't live without.If an item doesn't meet those criteria — or make you happy — then you should reconsider it.