Q: HOW MUCH DOES A TINY HOUSE COST?
Professionally build tiny homes are typically priced between $48,000 and $70,000 for shell only. For basic finishings Tiny houses can go between 72,000.00 to 120,000.00 and up with higher finishings. A good rule to go by is about 3000.00 per foot basic trailer plus applicable taxes and fees, and upgrades an example would be
24 foot Tiny Home multiply by 3000.00 plus applicable fees and upgrades
24 x 3000 = 72,000.00 plus fees and taxes and upgrades
Or our shell package no finishings interior or mechanicals or windows or exterior finishes is a option as well. that is priced at start of 2000.00 plus fees taxes and upgrades.
Q: WHAT IS A TINY HOUSE?
When most folks use the term tiny house, they are often referring to a home built using conventional methods but on the scale of an RV travel trailer. These homes are often built on flatbed trailers and are owner-built. Their square footage usually does not surpass 300 square feet. But small cabins, cottages, and other small residences can also be considered tiny houses. So the term is not so much an exclusive definition, but an inclusive category of extremely small residences.
Q: ARE TINY HOUSES LEGAL?
It depends where you are and how you use it. Some communities have few building restrictions and are very friendly to alternative housing solutions. Other places have rules coming out their ears plus oodles of uptight neighbors that don’t want people living in their neighbor’s backyard.
People who are motivated to find solutions to their housing challenges will find the ingenuity in themselves to make it happen. The best advice I have on this is to research and learn as much as you can about the community you want to live in, and look for zoning loopholes and alternative housing friendly neighbors.
Tiny houses can also be built on foundations with permits if you want to go that route. Not all communities have minimum dwelling size rules but often the biggest hurdle is getting an exception to the minimum square footage requirement.
One common loophole for this is to look for land zoned for multi-family housing (i.e.: apartments) and then get a permit to build a tiny house. It’s common for multi-family zoned areas to have no minimum size for dwellings because these zones must allow for small apartments.
Another option is to look into the ADU (accessory dwelling unit, a.k.a. granny unit/mother in law house) allowances. Many communities allow a small house to be built in the backyard of a larger home if the dwelling is to be used for family or caretakers – and not rented out.
Q: DO I NEED BUILDING PERMITS TO BUILD A TINY HOUSE?
If a tiny house is built on a trailer it typically falls into the category of ‘travel trailer’ and building codes don’t normally apply. But it is best to build to standard building codes and make sure your house is strong enough to withstand highway speeds. A good approach is to build the house with the same materials & methods used in locations subject to hurricanes.
If a tiny house fits the definition of a shed it may not need permits, although it also may not be legal to use as a dwelling. It’s always best to check with your local planning department before building anything, look for the loopholes and know your local laws.
Q: WHAT KIND OF TOILETS DO PEOPLE INSTALL IN A TINY HOUSES?
Most people are using composting toilets or RV toilets with waste tanks. The most popular composting toilet seems to be the lovable loo, a sawdust toilet developed by Joseph Jenkins. Once you get over the idea of doing your business in a bucket and covering it with sawdust you’ll realize this simple solution is far more sustainable, sensible, and environmentally friendly than other choices. It’s virtually free too, which is always a plus.
The main advantage of commercial composting toilets is that they break down the waste faster by adding air, movement, and heat. All of this extra help composts the material faster requiring less storage a good example of a commercial toilet is the Separetta this composting toilet is the most user friendly . A simple sawdust toilet also requires a compost bin/pile so it can cook for a couple years. After that time the compost is safe for the garden.
If you build a mobile tiny house and plan to move it from place to place a commercial composing toilet is probably a better choice. If you stay on your own land a sawdust toilet may be the way to go.
Q: HOW DO I HEAT AND COOL A TINY HOUSE?
For heating, most people use small propane furnace or electric space heaters if they have a utility grid connection. There are many rv propane furnaces on the market. Some people use wood stoves but they tend to overheat such small spaces unless sized for the space.
For cooling, air conditioners are the most common choice. A very small window unit is often ample for a tiny home that’s on the grid. If you’re off-grid it’s not practical due to the high energy requirements… in other words it would take a lot of panels/batteries to keep a place cool with an air conditioner in a hot environment. Another form of heating and cooling is called a Mini Split / Heat Pump.
Q: WHAT ARE THE SIZE / WEIGHT LIMITATIONS FOR TINY HOUSES?
Each state/region has different rules. Typically trailers aren’t much longer than 38′ or 40′, and tiny homes don’t often get longer than 24′. Weight considerations for tiny houses don’t typically push the oversize road limits; but they do push the limits for height and width. Typically 13′ 6″ in height and 8′ 6″ in width are the maximum dimensions without requiring a special move permit.
Q: CAN A FAMILY LIVE IN A TINY HOUSE?
Sure, and there is no one-size-fits-all for housing. A family will need more space than an individual or couple. People that work from home will need more space. The whole idea of living simply in small spaces is that the true value of the home is realized, and the home doesn’t become a burden. In other words it’s about finding balance and the first step is reducing the number of possessions.
Q: ARE TINY HOUSES OFF-THE-GRID?
Any tiny house can be powered by off-grid electricity, but like any off-grid house choosing to use less power will get you the lowest cost system. Giving up things like microwaves, electric heaters, blow dryers, and electric clothes dryers, will allow you to really scale down your electricity needs.
Q: HOW DO I INSURE A TINY HOUSE?
Check with your insurance agent, and put it in terms they can understand. Typically calling it a ‘custom travel trailer’, or cabin, will help them understand what you are talking about.