The American dream is not a tiny house. These little munchkin-sized abodes are cute and fascinating and have taken over social media and TV in the past few years, but they are not as popular as you would think.
How many people can live in 400 square feet. Doesn’t sound difficult for one person with a minimum of stuff and a simplistic life, but sharing the space with another person will not add to the longevity of a relationship.
The most attractive advantage of living in an oversized closet would be cost. The average you-build-it-yourself is $23,000 without the land. This is advantageous for someone “starting out” and doesn’t want to incur a large mortgage payment or monthly rent bills. Obviously, the smaller the home, the less it cost, but on the down side, complying with codes and securing a loan doesn’t come easy, especially if your home is on wheels.
Tiny homes are cozy and cost less to heat and maintain. They also force inhabitants to live a less cluttered life. George Carlin said that people have houses to store their stuff.
With less storage space, trips to the store are more frequent. Forget those trips to Costco and buying in bulk to save money, unless you build a pantry or shed on your property. In hot or cold weather areas these sheds need to be climate controlled bringing up the initial cost of the structure.
Tiny homes are not an option for very tall people who will most likely feel claustrophobic in such scaled-down quarters. A young couple could sustain living in a tiny house until they had children. Since there are usually stairs without rails leading to sleeping lofts, babies & toddlers would not be safe in this environment.
Inviting friends for a social dinner or watching TV would present a problem since seating is at a minimum. And don’t forget, tiny homes have one bathroom—a social catastrophe, in my opinion.
I think these tiny houses would be practical if added to a backyard for a guest house or an office, but not to live full time.
Having alone time is important to me as well as having stuff. Sorry, George, but I just can’t change.
Nancy Hugo CKD is a certified Kitchen Design as well as the founder and editor of DesignersCircleHQ.com. Nine years ago Nancy felt the need to bring the Design Community together by networking with social media – hence the birth of Designers Circle. More about Nancy can be found on her website: NancyHugo.com