The tiny-house movement has taken the property world by storm of late, as an architectural and social movement that advocates simple living. This fun and modern timber home movement embraces social responsibility, alleviates financial concerns, and satisfies the desire for more personal time and freedom. Freedom from debt, freedom from a mortgage and freedom from being tied to a lifestyle that connects us with buying unnecessarily.
What is the tiny house movement?
While coming with no hard-and-fast rules, tiny homes come in all shapes, sizes, and forms, and are generally between 100 and 400 square feet in size. Set on either a foundation or a mini house on wheels for, the tiny house movement promotes a real lock-up-and-go lifestyle.
Centred around desires of modesty and conservation, many people are choosing the tiny life philosophy to downsize, simplify, and live with less. The freedom that accompanies the tiny house lifestyle thus also promotes financial prudence, economically safe, shared community experiences, and a shift in consumerism-driven mindsets.
Most commonly used as accessory dwelling units (or ADUs) to serve as additional on-property housing for ageing relatives, as a home office, or as a guest house, tiny homes typically comprise of a living area, kitchen, and bathroom with a sleeping loft or small downstairs bedroom.
Some homes are designed and built by the owner, while others are purchased, adapted from trailers, or built from a tiny house kit. These are perfect to situate in an urban area close to work or entertainment, as a nature escape, or to work remotely.
Where did this movement start?
With its foundations in the 1970s along with the ‘back to the land’ movement in the USA, this social movement became popular with architects across the world in the 90s to design smaller spaces with multi-functional elements like furniture and storage space. This timber construction trend was then further popularized after the start of the global economic recession in 2007.
People around the world have since embraced a simpler lifestyle by downscaling and reevaluating living needs. Homeowners are now also embracing environmental responsibility by moving to rural areas and becoming more self-sufficient through raising organic agriculture and living off-grid.
What are the benefits of owning a tiny home?
Just because they are simpler, does not mean that tiny homes are at all primitive. Many of these mini structures are equipped with modern technology including WiFi, safety features, smart appliances and central heating, yet are small enough to power daily with a small solar array.
Tiny timber homes are cost-effective as the smaller design uses fewer materials, meaning less spending on building supplies, a faster built time, and less labour. Especially when using modular construction techniques.
They even save you money long after they’re built. They are less expensive in terms of taxes, insurance, heating, and maintenance costs, and bills for electricity, fuel, water, and waste disposal are also lower – especially when living off-the-grid.
FREE UP YOUR TIME
The smaller the home, the easier it is to keep clean – freeing up your time to do the things that matter. Spend less time on chores and more on your work, hobbies or relationships.
With a small home, there is no room for excess ‘stuff’ which encourages a less cluttered, simpler lifestyle. This helps you to keep your belongings down to the essentials, and mindful of the items that are truly important.
With the minimised space of a tiny home, designers and architects have learned how to create multi-purpose features and utilize dual-purpose furniture. You can have walls that transform into sliding doors, drop down to form decking or additional outdoor areas, and optimize your vertical spaces.
Mostly built on a simple foundation, many tiny homes are built on trailers for ease of movement and towing. This means you can enjoy life on the road without giving up all the comforts of home.
Handy tip: Being on wheels also exempts you from needing a building permit for your home.
The ecological benefits of owning a tiny home
As mentioned, tiny homes make it much easier to live off the grid. They often have off-grid electricity, roof-based solar panels, composting toilets, integrated rainwater capture systems, and even tiny homes that come equipped with their own wind turbines.
More than that, tiny timber houses have less impact on the environment than traditional brick-and-mortar structures. This is because they are typically built using sustainable green building techniques like recycled materials and their small size also means less building material and less energy to power.
Using less space obviously requires a much smaller plot of land, and makes less of an impact on the surrounding environment while simultaneously bringing you closer to nature.
Centred around desires of modesty and conservation, the recent reintroduction of tiny homes has offered people affordable, ecologically-friendly housing in addition to a self-sufficient and adventurous lifestyle.
As you can see – the tiny home movement has brought with it a plethora of new ideas, allowances, freedoms and choices. Will you go tiny?