Tiny homes are a great way to make a change to your lifestyle and more and more people are moving into them. But why are tiny houses so popular?
And most of all, are they legal? It is true to say that they oppose the ordinary.
They are much smaller in size, weight, and are definitely unique. But are they worth it?
If you are interested in delving into the world of tiny houses, it is best to first learn about what it takes to own one of these homes, what responsibilities will need to be taken on, and if they are allowed in your home state.
What Is A Tiny House?
Tiny houses are just what they sound like. It is a miniature home, significantly smaller than your average house.
You will typically find one of these houses sized under 400 square feet and these can be built both on land and (more favorably) on a trailer.
The tiny house comes with mixed opinions.
More often than not will you see your average regular sized home, but despite this the tiny house is continuing to thrive and we are seeing more people joining others in achieving the perfect tiny home.
Tiny House Movement
There is a cause for everything, and the tiny house was not something that began because of a trend. It started because of a movement.
This movement was started in the 1970s and has continued to live on by many. There are many reasons for joining this movement.
This movement is for the people with concerns with finance, the environment, and for those who desire a sense of freedom.
A lot of money goes into a home; almost half of the income which people earn from paying jobs go towards keeping a roof over their head.
The tiny home movement, however, provides an alternative outlet which allows people to still make that income and have a solid roof over their heads whilst, at the same time, not devoting all of their earnings into sustaining a home.
Essentially, a tiny home means you will be saving a ton of money.
You will go from stressing about bills and rent to having nothing more to worry about. This is a great option, too, for those who struggle to keep a steady income and risk a life of homelessness.
The tiny house is extremely efficient, for the price of upkeep can cost as low as $15 a month.
Owning a tiny house is not only beneficially financially, but it is also good for a person’s mindset.
Earning a high income does not mean a person has to buy the grandest house or buy things they think they need because they have the money to do so.
You can earn lots but still live in a tiny house because it is efficient and effective. Along with owning a tiny house is the positive impact it has on the environment.
It is known that people living in tiny house reduce their energy consumption by 45%.
The tiny house leads to a dramatic reduction in your carbon footprint, and this is epically significant for those living in the United States, as the country is notorious for having one of the highest carbon footprints in the world.
In order to practice sustainability and improve on your livelihood, a tiny house is a great way to go.
Are Tiny Houses Illegal?
There are many positives to owning a tiny house. It is not only for the benefit of finances and the environment; it is much more than that.
With tiny houses people are happier – they have less worries, less stress, and learn a new way of living, not taking the little things for granted. In this case, less is certainly more.
But is everyone on board with the tiny house dynamic?
Despite all of the positives which come out of owning a tiny house, not every state condones them.
Although not specifically considered illegal, they are not treated the same way as the average home.
This is for many reasons, but the main reason is that a tiny home cannot always meet requirements and regulations. However, this is all dependent on state.
The Building Code
Tiny houses come in different forms and depending on that form follows a specific building code.
Some U.S states do not consider the tiny house a legitimate place of residence, therefore it is not in the building code.
As well as this, tiny houses are not easy to regulate. Official checks have to be put in place and standards have to be met for something to be considered a home, but a tiny house is not your generic home.
The majority of tiny house owners have their house on wheels, and they do this to get past government regulations.
With wheels, the tiny house is considered an RV, however on a solid foundation the tiny house is then going against the government guidelines.
There is hope that one day people will not have to feel the pressure of building their homes on wheels and that they can build their tiny houses just like the regular house.
The tiny house has particularly been made aware of by millennials who seek a functioning home to call their own as well as financial gratification.
Finding a house is a difficult task, even if you’re wanting to find a rented accommodation, and depending on where you live those prices will vary.
Many young people, especially those needing to pay off college debts whilst looking for a secure job, can struggle. A tiny house is the perfect way of living.
The reason building codes are put in place is to ensure the safety of the house’s residents. As tiny houses are not considered a house, the proper codes and regulations cannot be put in place.
What States Allow Tiny Houses?
There are many positives and negatives when it comes to tiny houses, however these all differ depending on state.
Whilst some states do not agree with the tiny house at all, other states have become increasingly lenient to the idea of the tiny home.
There are only a handful of states who are accepting of tiny houses but for the majority these houses are not accepted – the accepting states tend to be those with more flexible laws or who are eco-friendly.
Below is a list of the states most accepting of tiny houses:
- North Carolina
- New Hampshire
- South Dakota
- South Carolina
- New Mexico
All of these states are the ones which are most accepting of tiny houses and is a reliable place to locate to if you are wanting to try this new way of living, but some of the top, guaranteed accepted states include California, Washington, and Florida.
Where Do I Start?
There are many things to check off when living in a tiny house. Not only do you have to know what is involved, but you also have to know that you want to be living in a tiny house.
This will be a completely different lifestyle to what you were previously used to, and some are not always ready to let go of their average living life.
However, if you do want to take that leap of faith and do something positive for yourself, your financial stability, and the environment, here is how you get started.
Are You Prepared To Live In A Tiny House?
It is important to know that you are ready to make this big change and have no regrets.
Find A Location
Do your research and know where it is acceptable to locate your tiny house. Rules state that the people in tiny houses cannot just live anywhere.
It is important to know which state and what area is the most suitable.
Create A List
Create a list of priorities for your tiny house. By writing down a list of needs you won’t be overwhelmed.
Know Not To Underestimate The Tiny House
Although this house is significantly smaller than the average house, that does not mean it has to be filled with small things. Choose whatever will make you feel comfortable and at home.
Build Your New Home
Once you have gotten past all of the regulations and legalities, you are ready to build.
Think about the house’s weight, whether you want wheels or land, how you wish to design, and most importantly make sure that you are building a home.
Overall, owning a tiny house is not an easy task. The law interferes with the process, but this is slowly changing.
More and more states are opening up to the idea of tiny house living, and more and more people are realizing the great positives which come out of it.
You are helping yourself financially by cutting costs, reducing the carbon footprint, it is eco-friendly, and you are benefitting your own mindset.