The push to live more in tune with the environment and the desire to live less expensively have combined to create increased interest in tiny homes. Now that this trend has some years under its belt, its clearer what tiny home living is really like.
Those who have tried it find similar benefits and challenges. No matter how you figure it, a tiny home can be created on a tinier budget. A tiny home’s square footage runs 200-400 square feet compared to around 1800-1900 square feet for a standard American house. The average home price in the U.S. is $220,000 while the average tiny home price runs from $4000 to $90,000, without the land, with the truly acceptable ‘permanent living’ tiny homes in the $40,000-$60,000 range.
Those who have been successful living in a 300 square foot home have discovered that a beautiful patio, garden space and nearby open space or parkland significantly improve livability. Most people who enjoyed tiny living spent a great deal of time outside.
Those who failed in their attempt, repeatedly said that eventually they felt like they were living in a hotel room and claustrophobia won out. Some ran into difficult zoning laws. Some found that obtaining workable utilities became a nightmare. Compost toilets proved unacceptable. It felt like living in a motor home. They became frustrated changing sheets in a cramped bedroom with a very low ceiling. Others were disillusioned because there was no space to entertain and have friends over. And many said that problems seemed to be magnified when they were forced to have no other room to go into and be alone.
But if you can find the perfect piece of land with utilities, you are way ahead. Then the benefits really start to dominate; very inexpensive cost of living, simplicity, less environmental impact, ease of maintenance. It may be possible to have no debt. You can fulfil a desire to live a ‘minimalism’ lifestyle, living with only your non-negotiable items. In many cases, if you need to move you can, with a fair amount of pre-planning, take the home with you. Maintaining sacred ‘me’ time and ‘me’ space proved to be an indispensable requirement for success. If you enjoy inexpensive living, fewer responsibilities, being without debt, environmental responsibility and a simple life, then tiny cottage living presents another option to consider. Simple can be sweet.
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