It seems everywhere we turn, we’re hearing more about the pioneers of “tiny” living. We’re not talking about elves or even small people… instead we’re talking about ordinary people living in a total space that’s typically less than 500 sq.ft. which is designed to be built on a footprint the size of a boat trailer… with the functionality of a yacht.
Jay Shafer, a co-founder of the Small House Society, has even designed and built a house that measures only 89 sq.ft. Mr. Shafer is also a co-owner of the Tumbleweed Tiny House Company which builds and sells custom homes of all shapes … but only tiny sizes.
For those who’re interested in creating a sustainable lifestyle, a tiny home provides an impetus to reorder life’s priorities in order to peel away the unnecessary encumbrances that have accumulated. Many owners of small homes have chosen to live apart from a main power grid altogether, but most can be hooked up to utilities. Sometimes these small dwellings are used as detached studios or offices as well.
Though most tiny homes are portable (built on a trailer base with wheels)…. they’re a far cry from the traditional notion of a trailer. Tiny homes feature architectural upgrades, premium insulation, stylish design and high-end materials, for quality over quantity of space. Every square inch is utilized and planned…. drawers tucked under loft steps, fold-out tables, and strategically placed covered porches and windows. Here’s a link to a site which offers some free plans for building your own tiny home… and it also has detailed plans you can purchase. This next link takes you to the personal stories of tiny home owners with photos of their own designs. If you want to find out more, here’s a link to access the Small House Society newsletter. And as a final link… click HERE then scroll down a bit to see a very ‘urban’ version of a tiny home too.
Imagine paying only $20,000 for your home…. no huge HUD-1 interest disclosure, and no 30-year mortgage. Mr. Shafer says that your utility bills can be less than $100/year. It all sounds tempting, but I think my neighbors would laugh if I bought 2 tiny homes…. one for me and one for my shoe closet.