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Tuesday, September 4, 2012

FIFTEEN reasons to go/stay tiny, when it comes to housing.

"THE BUNK HOUSE" Super Affordable Housing/Storage from the Jamaica Cottage Shop in Jamaica, VT

Here are FIFTEEN reasons for/benefits of living in a tiny house, or keeping (if you must have one) your vacation getaway tiny....I've compiled this list as ammunition for YOU, the tiny house advocate, or for any who might be contemplating making the switch. I've also been put on the spot many times at gatherings, where drunken uncle "so and so" corners me near others and asks "So what's the idea behind this tiny house nonsense anyway?". Here, my friends, is how you can put YOUR annoying uncle/aunt/cousin/friend in his/her place....

I talk about these at every Tumbleweed Tiny House Workshops (upcoming in Chicago and NYC), its addressed in my book "Humble Homes, Simple Shacks", and I yack about this at my own workshops as well (the next one is Nov 2-4 outside Boston). CLICK HERE FOR INFO ON THAT WORKSHOP.

This list seems to grow and grow as more start to realize that less can literally mean MORE when it comes to tiny housing and well, just scaling back in general.

A tiny house....
1. Just costs less to build overall

2. Requires fewer materials to build- which is much easier on landfills and the environment- assuming you're not tearing down another home to build a tiny one (if so- RECYCLE/RE-USE those materials!)

3. Can be built QUICKER- no sitting around, piling and shuffling materials, coordinating a year-long build and its deliveries and contracts, and paying double rent elsewhere to live while the project is underway.

4. Takes up less space, leaving you MORE outdoor living space/land for enjoyment, gardening, and privacy (in terms of a spatial buffer zone).

5. Costs MUCH LESS to heat! In an era of ever-increasing gas and oil prices, this one is huge. Conversely, a tiny house costs less to COOL too.

6. Costs less to furnish. I have a friend who has and "had" to buy five couches- for five huge rooms with sitting areas- just to FILL the space. CRAZY, and expensive. DON'T be that guy.

7. Costs less to maintain. How long would it take you to repaint a tiny house as compared to a McMansion? To re-roof one? Re-shingle it? And what about the cost difference in paints and materials, nevermind the labor.

8. Costs less in taxes.

9. Prohibits you from buying impulse junk you really don't need. You CAN'T buy these sorts of things as you KNOW you just don't have the space.

10. Doesn't take as long to clean. Heck, some of them are so small you might not even need to buy/store a vacuum (use a broom), or you could get away with a portable "dust buster" instead.

11. (On Wheels)- They're mobile- if the job market changes, or an area goes economically sour, you can move your house with you! No packing all your things into a costly moving truck, as YOUR HOME is that moving truck!

12. Less to lose. I hate to even think of it, in the case of fire, flooding, and so on, but its not a $400,000 home you're losing. If you can find insurance for your tiny home or travel trailer, its less of a premium/yearly cost too.

13. (On Wheels)- As the seasons change, you can MOVE your house so as to face away, or towards, the sun- Winter vs. Summer, depending on your climate, and orientation in regards to the equator.

14. Unwanted/surprise guests are less likely to stay for long periods of time or stay overnight for too long- there just isn't room for them. With the money SAVED by living in a tiny house, as Dee Williams (from Portland Alternative Dwellings) explains, you can rent a hotel ballroom, or a function hall once in awhile, if you're the party hosting sort.

15. Hurricane avoiding....when the news reports that Katrina II is headed your way, if you live in a tiny house on wheels, you can get the heck out of Dodge, or park the home inside a pre-arranged, safer, storage building or garage.

AND THESE ARE JUST OFF THE TOP OF MY HEAD- there are MANY more reasons, I'm sure- feel free to add yours in the comments below!

SOME GREAT RESOURCES, if you're contemplating making the move....

There are MANY others, which I've blogged about many times, on this blog too....

-Derek "Deek" Diedricksen



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