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Tiny home living isn’t exactly new. People have been searching for tranquility and seeking to carve out their own small spaces since the dawn of time. Tiny home living is merely the resurgence of simplicity with a shift toward downsizing and minimizing. With a tiny home, you can design a space that suits your interests at a much lower cost than a standard custom home.
Nikita Moore, an advocate for tiny houses, loves to have strangers walk through her home. Moore will be retiring in a few years and knew she wanted to travel, so she started looking at RVs. But she wasn’t satisfied and turned to tiny houses, feeling it was more like a home. Tiny home living helped her to get rid of a lot of possessions. It forced her to look at some of her habits. She was a shopaholic but figured out pretty quickly that she can’t start accumulating stuff. Now she’s saving money and even plans to start her own business.
Everything You Wanted to Know About Tiny Home Living
For some people living in a Lilliputian home has become a way of life. If you’re deciding to make a move to a tiny home, then consider the location, your family size, and lifestyle. Determine whether you could live in such a small space. Plan for utilities and decide if you want to build a tiny house with a fixed foundation or on wheels. Adding a porch, deck, and room to roam outside can be essential when your indoor space is limited.
What is the tiny home living movement?
Also called the small house movement, tiny home living is a social and architectural change. It champions living in small houses and so much more. Tiny home living promotes financial prudence, community experiences, economic safety, and encourages a shift in the consumerism-driven mindset.
The typical American home is around 2600 square feet, whereas a tiny house is usually only 100 to 400 square feet. Tiny home living is inexpensive, and 68 percent of small homeowners have no mortgage and 32 percent of tiny homeowners have more than $10,000 tucked away for a rainy day.
Tiny houses come in a variety of sizes and shapes. They can be anything from a log cabin in the woods, to a repurposed shipping container, or a luxurious waterfront cottage.
What are the benefits of living in a tiny house?
People living in tiny houses speak glowingly about the many benefits. The significant advantages of living in a tiny house include lower expenses, less building cost, an environmentally friendly footprint, energy efficiency, easier maintenance, clutter-free life, freedom of movement and simple living.
How much does a tiny house cost?
The cool thing about tiny home living is that you can build it to match your lifestyle and budget. The small homes can range in cost from below $10,000 to $180,000. The cost of making your minuscule living quarters will depend upon a combination of factors such as your locality, the complexity of the building plans, materials, and how much you’ve planned to do yourself.
Other factors are whether you’ll build it on a foundation or a trailer. It will cost between $20,000 and $30,000 to build on a foundation and as much as $30,000 to $40,000 if you’re building on a trailer. Be prepared for other surprise costs that come along with buying a home for the first time also.
Where can I buy a tiny house?
While looking for tiny houses online check the Tiny House Map. Also look at the Tiny House Listings for professionally built, and owner built tiny homes. Micro homes are also available through sites like Amazon and eBay. Consider looking at sheds and shed builders. In many places, you’ll come across roadside businesses that sell barns, tin sheds, and cabins. Also, consider a good contractor who’s willing to build a small house for you.
Where can I park or build a tiny house?
Many people park their tiny mobile homes at a friend or relative’s place or on property they own. Some people travel and move around from place to place. Small houses are still in the grey area, and ordinances and zoning don’t account for this type of alternative housing. To know whether your community allows tiny houses, check with your local planning department. Each city has different zoning, codes, and ordinances, so it pays to do some research.
What kind of toilet do they use in tiny houses?
Many people are using composting toilets with waste tanks. The most popular form of this toilet is a sawdust toilet. Here you do your business in a bucket and cover it with sawdust. This practice is simple and far more sustainable than other choices.
The critical advantage of a commercial composting toilet is that they break down the waste faster by adding movement, air, and heat. If you’re planning for a tiny mobile house, then a commercial compost toilet is probably a better choice. If you stay on your land, then the sawdust toilet will be more suitable.
How to heat and cool a tiny house
In tiny home living, people use small propane heaters or electric space heaters if they have a utility grid connection. Wood stoves are another popular choice, but they tend to overheat such small places.
Air conditioners are the most common choice for cooling purposes. A small window unit is enough for a tiny home that’s on the grid. It’s not a practical solution if you’re off-grid. One smart option would be to use a low voltage homemade swamp cooler, which works well on limited solar power.
Store things while tiny home living
Before you move into your new home, make “stick to your essentials” your new mantra. Mount some decorative storage items on the wall. Use multipurpose types of furniture like an ottoman that serves as storage to hold games, gear or even blankets. Hang things wherever you can. Add shelves to the sides of your cabinets. Use the space above your stove’s hood. Put shelves between the studs and turn your sink into an extra counter space.
Finding the Best of the Best
Measuring less than 400 square foot of space, tiny homes give people an excellent opportunity to declutter and live a less materialistic lifestyle. We are familiar with America’s fixation on micro homes, so we looked for the durability, overall cost of the tiny house, whether it’s a DIY build or a custom build. Some tiny homes that we’ve reviewed have a bathroom, bedroom, front porch, while others lack toilet facilities. We also looked for the doors, windows, the simplicity, and the overall space of the tiny home.
Perfect Houses for Tiny Home Living
The tiny home living movement isn’t necessarily about sacrifice. With thoughtful and innovative designs homeowners are discovering that a micro home leads to a simpler yet fuller life. It connects them with nature, family, and friends while freeing them from an urge to keep up with the Joneses.
New Generation Builders Container Home
This tiny home, in a shipping container frame, comes with a full kitchen including a stainless steel refrigerator, granite countertops, stainless steel sink and faucet, and a two burner stove top. It has a full bathroom with toilet, vanity, and full shower. Cyprus wood tongue paneling enhances its durability, warmth, and charm. The double pane window glass door adds a classic appeal. The pre-fabricated home comes complete with separate storage spaces with outside access and wall mounted grill.
Adding to the luxury in this tiny house, there are custom wood cabinets with a 42-inch TV and surround sound. An Amazon reviewer gets so excited that he proclaims that it doesn’t get any better than this. He adds that the house is so small and stylish and that it’s a conversation piece for a lifetime. This tiny house scores a 5.0 out of 5 stars on Amazon and costs between $30,000 and $40,000.
Duramax flat top insulated building
It’s a pocket-friendly convertible shed that ranges between $3,000 to $4,000. This Duramax building comes with a metal foundation that allows construction on almost any flat surface. The outer and inner walls, galvanized and pre-painted, make it stable and impenetrable. This is a great base to turn into your own custom tiny house.
The bolted tongue and groove wall panel assembly makes it easy to assemble. It is one of the most robust DIY buildings with a snow load of 30 pounds per square foot. There is no worry about safety as it comes with a secured door and deadbolt lock. The building has an angular roof design for natural water drainage along with a downspout that collects residual water. This product is yet to receive a rating on Amazon.
Lillevilla Allwood Escape
This rustic yet elegant little house may be the best deal in the lot. It’s snug at 113 square feet but lacks a bathroom. This Nordic Spruce cabin is built for nature and has a dual tongue wind block pattern. Use this space as your home office, lake house, yoga studio, or guest house.
This is a DIY cabin with step by step instructions and requires one full day for assembling by two adults. The cedar wood has a pleasing grain and is non-toxic. A grateful Amazon customer writes that this tiny house was the most cost-effective housing option while constructing her main house. This product received 3.6 out of 5 stars and comes in a price range of $4000 to $5000.
This is a larger cabin kit that you can order on Amazon. With a loft area adding 129 square feet, this cabin provides 354 square feet of floor space. It has three rooms on the main floor which allows ample space for a full bathroom and kitchen. The manufacturer offers customizable options, making this basic kit fully adaptable to tiny home living. Among the available options are an extended roof and additional windows.
This tiny house ranges in base price between $28,000 and $33,000. The kit does not include roofing shingles, interior finishing such as electrical and plumbing, or foundation materials. Consider those additional expenses should when opting for this product.
If you want to live in a log cabin this might be a great option for you. This 259 square foot cabin with 168 square foot loft. This can be a full-blown woodland retreat, with a full kitchen and bathroom, making it both functional and practical.
This Scandinavian cabin has thick walls, providing a natural insulation that makes it perfect for colder, northern climates. Unlike many of the kits in this class, this kit includes both the exterior base enclosure and all finishing touches including windows and plumbing (but it does not include shingles or foundation materials). The base cost ranges from $18,000 to $ 25,000. Additional extra features are available from the manufacturer but will add to the total price.
Ideally suited for everyday living or perfect for weekend gateways this tiny home has a bedroom and restroom and measures 399 square feet. Additionally, it is complete with a front porch, kitchen, and living room. This park model RV includes an open concept floor plan, ample storage space, and a mono sloped roof. This awesome looking RV/tiny home is yet to receive a rating on Amazon. It costs between $62,000 and $67,000 with an additional charge of $4,500 to $4,900 for freight.
BZBCabins.com Lakeview Log Cabin
The key selling point of this cabin is the price, simplicity, and windows. This lovely cabin will accommodate any purpose you can imagine from a pool house to a garden cabin, artist’s studio, or even a hunting lodge.
You can enjoy this log cabin all through the year because of the high-quality Nordic Spruce used in its construction. While this offering from BZB Cabins and Outdoors is a complete structure, it does not include roof shingles and other finishing touches that would be needed to make it a suitable tiny house. There is no indoor restroom, plumbing, or electrical systems included in the kit. This kit has a very reasonable price between $7,000 and $8,000.
This beautiful garden house design is available in three sizes. The Arlanda is the smallest, at 146 square feet inside. Slightly larger, the Arlanda XL offers 193 square feet of interior space. The largest, the Arlanda XXL offers 238 square feet of interior space, which is enough space to include a full-size bedroom. All three models look great in rural or urban settings. The design includes a beautiful, contemporary front porch that adds an elegant touch to the exterior of this garden house.
The base cabin kit can be customized to add finishing touches. The cost for the Arlanda XXL ranges between $10,000 and $15,000 for the base unit. If you’re on a tight budget, you’ll need to consider the extra costs of a foundation and roofing materials. The base kit also does not include any fixtures or furnishings, so plan to spend extra for the kitchen, bathroom, plumbing, and electrical installation.
Best of Tiny Home Living
After a lot of research, the pre-fabricated furnished custom home made it to the final cut. Available from the New Generation builders this tiny home is worth every penny. It costs between $30,000 to $40,000 but comes fully furnished with stainless steel refrigerator, sink, granite counter tops, and many more great amenities.
The container-style home arrives complete and ready-for-occupancy. It meets most building codes, is plumbed and set up for electrical service. Additional containers can be added, at a nominal cost, to increase the size, even expanding into a two-story structure. The versatility, affordability, and functionality of this home make it an excellent option for tiny home living.
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