Category: Tiny House Lifestyle

How to Live Big in a Tiny Living Space: The Best Ideas and Hacks

How to Live Big in a Tiny Living Space: The Best Ideas and Hacks

The Tiny House Movement, like its name, can often leave a person feeling small. Do you feel the same? Well, you need to find ways to live big in a tiny living space. 

In your downsized living journey, feeling inadequate is typical; but you shouldn’t have to stay that way forever. 

In this post, we listed a few hacks on how to live big in a tiny living space.

Live big in a tiny living space: What does it mean?

To “live big in a tiny living space” means residing comfortably and living your best life in a small home. Just because you’re living in a tiny house doesn’t mean you can’t taste the good life. 

Now, that might confuse others. The purpose of living in a tiny house is to downsize and sustain a minimalist lifestyle, right? 

Well, that’s true. However, being human, you need your own space to nurture your creativity. That space, of course, is usually your house, where you feel the most comfortable.   

As a result of feeling comfortable, you’re more eager to let loose, make mistakes— thus resulting in you generating the best ideas. Heck, living in a tiny house might even make your imagination run even wilder.

That’s why to “live big in a tiny living space” is essential. It lets you enjoy life and nurture your creativity even in a small area. 

So, how do you actually live big in a tiny living space? 

In life, you have to be pragmatic to achieve pleasure. You have to work hard in order to play hard. If you want to live big in a tiny living space, then be prepared to make adjustments mainly in the following: 

  • Your tiny house
  • Habits
  • Lifestyle

Nevertheless, don’t think about changing your whole personality in a snap just to live big in a tiny living space. To know what we’re talking about, you can take the popular YouTube channel, Living Big in a Tiny House, for example.

As you can observe from their videos, different individuals with various jobs and personalities manage to live in a tiny house happily. They achieved to live big in a tiny house because they made adjustments and perhaps sacrifices. 

Below, we provided some ideas and hacks on how you can live big in a tiny house. 

Live Big in a Tiny Living Space: Ideas and Hacks

1. Don’t balance light and dark.

live big in a tiny living space - tiny house interior with brown and white hues
Don’t put too many dark objects inside your tiny house.

You want to start creating a spacious look to live largely in a tiny living space. Investing lighter hues in your walls and furniture is a good jumping start. 

Don’t meet halfway when it comes to lighter and deeper hues in your tiny home. Use your dark accessories and furniture pieces sparingly. 

As for your walls and even your ceilings, off-white, stark white, and light taupe paint is a good idea. You can start contrasting those colors with their deeper versions. Finally, top it all off with a few pieces of dark-hued furniture and accessories

Here’s an aesthetic gray Kingway Sectional Sofa Bed that doubles as a storage space.

2. Create a reading nook. 

To live big in a tiny house, you must nurture your alone time; therefore, you must dedicate a space as your personal reading nook, no matter how small you think your space is. Here’s how to do it. 

  1. Choose a corner in your loft or bedroom with good lighting and ventilation. This beautiful Miroco LED Floor Lamp is perfect for reading.
  2. Find a good chair—something on which you can relax for an hour or two. We recommend this clever CordaRoy’s Chenille Bean Bag Chair that also functions as a bed.
  3. Make it a comfortable space. Put throw pillows, a light blanket, and a small coffee table with storage under it
  4. Do your best to seclude the area or, at least, the chair from the other sections of the bedroom or the loft.
  5. Use a stack of boxes to conceal your nook, but not too much that it overshadows the natural light. 

3. Hook ‘em on the wall. 

;ive big in a tiny living space - mounted kitchen utensils and pans on hooks
Hooks should be staples in every tiny house!

Have you ever heard about using the power of hooks? Many homeowners swear by hooks in saving space in their tiny homes. They’re great because not only are they durable but they also stick to anywhere, literally—plastic, metal, wood, glass, or tiles surfaces. 

Want to be smart in living small? Follow these tips in using hooks:

  • Repurpose your main door into storage by hanging a bag with similar-sized pockets for brushes, dog-leashes, screws, and other small items and knick-knacks. For a heavy-duty door hook, choose Over The Door Hook Hanger by ACMETOP.
  • Stick a hook to your baking ingredients container and hang your measuring cups on them. For your kitchen hook, we recommend Greenco Wall Mounted Rail.
  • Drill holes in your plant and herb pots and hang them on the hooks. Or, use plant hangers such as Tvird Macrame Plant Hangers.
  • Stick two hooks and hang caddies on your kitchen or bathroom. You can now store your spices, beauty products, and bath products. We’ve got the perfect hook for your bathroom. Check this Franklin Brass hook.
  • Got drawers and open storage boxes? Stick three hooks on the inside walls and hang whatever you need to. 

4. Invest in mirrors. 

This one’s pretty obvious already, right? Mirrors instantly widen an area in a small house, but how about in a tiny house under 400 square meters? 

The key is setting aside a premium space only for mirrors. If the goal is to make an illusion of spaciousness, then it wouldn’t be a waste of wall space, right? 

So, strategically place your mirrors in places where a lot of natural light hits the wall. If you have an empty wall space adjacent to windows, then you can place them there. 

Oh, and we suggest using wall mirrors instead of standing mirrors to save more floor space.

May we suggest this stunning Stonebriar SB-6137A Gold Geometric Wall Mirror. It’s stylish and perfect for any tiny home!

5. Buy pegboards. 

White pegboard with a pouch and cacti
You can do hundreds of creative and organizational activities with pegboards.

Pegboards are rectangular pieces of wood or metal with a uniform row of holes. The best thing about pegboards is they are like Google Spreadsheets—you can customize them to your heart’s content. And that is why they should be a permanent staple in your tiny house!

Almost anything is possible to store using pegboards. Here’s how to use them. 

  • Place them above your kitchen sink. Stick caddies for your spices and dishwashing liquid. Hang a small towel rack as well.
  • Use the space above your bed by placing a pegboard. You can hang caddies for your phone chargers, books, and even lamps. 
  • You can also use a pegboard for your art. Bond with your kids by stitching colorful threads on a plain pegboard. 
  • Do you feel like the sunlight hitting on your tiny house’s outside walls is being put to waste? Just stick a pegboard and place your succulents and cacti. That sunlight will never go to waste again. 
  • If you have kids, you can use a pegboard to hang their artwork, art materials, and achievements. Meanwhile, if you live alone, you can hang pictures, printed photos of inspirational quotes, and more. You can make magical places of inspiration using pegboards!

If you’re looking for a stylish pegboard, take a look at this Azar Displays 771620-WHT Pegboard.

6. Schedule a monthly storage cleanup. 

We know, this is not easy to do… With a busy schedule, a hectic work routine, you can’t possibly follow a by-monthly cleanup six months in a row. 

However, just like with achieving big goals, you can win by starting small! You have plenty of storage and shelves in your tiny house, right? 

Don’t do an entire cleanup of all your storage spaces. Start with your kitchen. Separate the things you stored into two categories:

1 – Those you’ve been storing for quite some time but didn’t really get to use

2 – Those you can see yourself using in the long run 

Ditch those items in number 1 and keep those things you placed under number 2. Next month, you can proceed to purge your bedroom’s storage spaces. 

No time for cleaning? Let BoostIQ RoboVac 11S do the cleaning for you!

7. KonMari your life. 

organized clothes and potted flowers on shelves
Celebrate tidying up and getting the peace of mind in your tiny house.

As a downsizing enthusiast, you probably heard about Marie Kondo by now… or at least you have an inkling about her and her KonMari method. 

Why should you try practicing it in your tiny house? Well, the most unique aspect of the KonMari method is tidying up by category and not by location. This makes tidying not only just a chore but also a healing process for the people involved. 

The method requires the user to tidy these five categories but not necessarily in order: 

  1. Clothes
  2. Miscellaneous items
  3. Books 
  4. Paper
  5. Sentimental items 

As you can see, there’s a category called sentimental items. In a tiny house, space is highly crucial, so you can’t allow yourself to be too attached to multiple sentimental items. 

That’s why we suggest you follow the KonMari process. It’s empathetic and unique, which is refreshing for people who constantly tidy up their small spaces. 

Here’s a stunning Sauder 419188 Storage Cabinet to keep your items organized.

8. Practice the art of Wabi-Sabi. 

Okay, enough about tidying. How about preserving? 

If KonMari celebrates bidding farewell to essential and non-essential things, then practicing Wabi-Sabi will help you make peace of living without the most unnecessary thing of it all—perfection. 

Wabi-Sabi is the ancient Japanese philosophy of appreciating life’s flaws and mistakes. It is a worldview that accepts and celebrates imperfection. 

If you live in a tiny house, practicing wabi-sabi will be a great foundation. It will help you fully embrace the downsized life. 

How? As human beings, we tend to desire stuff and believe that owning them can make us feel great… but we all know that’s not what happens, right? Or it could be that you felt that temporary high after owning that pair of shoes, but after a few days, you didn’t seem to feel that great anymore. 

If you practice wabi-sabi, you will feel okay, or even satisfied with not owning many things. As a result, you might not even get to the point where you need to do a monthly storage cleanup—because it’s not your thing to keep things that are not essential! 

Practicing wabi-sabi will make you feel grateful that you are living the downsized life.

9. Be smart with your windows. 

Live big in a tiny living space: a cozy young guy looking out the window
Windows are “your eyes” to the soulful, beautiful views outside.

You might not have realized it yet, but windows are a big deal in tiny houses. 

In a tiny house or an RV, wall space is crucial; therefore, your windows’ placements must be worth the space they are occupying. Particularly, your windows’ positions should allow for a cross-breeze, which provides optimal ventilation. 

Moreover, don’t hesitate to open your windows during the day if it’s not raining. Let the natural air in. Besides improving the indoor airflow, the sunlight will also energize you more if you’re feeling lethargic. 

To keep on getting those benefits in your tiny house, follow these tips about taking care of your windows:

  • Make them moisture-resistant by applying a sealant. We recommend choosing vinyl windows if you haven’t built your tiny house yet. 
  • Add panes to your window if you’re traveling in cold places—make your windows triple-pane. 
  • Attach shutters or use tempered glass if you’re always on the road.  

Being clever with your windows will make a big impact on your living in ways you never thought it could. 

10. Go for solar. 

Finally, we arrive at sustainability. What better way to live largely by cutting even more dollars from your utility expenses? 

Even if your tiny house has a foundation, we suggest you get solar panels. 

The benefits of installing solar panels on your roof are independence, more after-tax budget, and extra cash. 

You become more independent by generating your own electricity, which means you’ll be learning more about sustainable energy along the way. Through this, you might find or even innovate ways to recreate clean energy. 

By saving a huge percent on your electricity bills, you can spend those extra dollars on recreation, learning, and even charity instead. More after-tax money means you can allocate more to other important things as well. 

Finally, you can even gain extra dollars by selling back your generated electricity to the grid. It will also offset your average energy consumption. As for the rates, it depends on where you live. 

Will doing it make you a bit richer? Nah. Doing this might not make you wealthy, but it can already help you save for the rainy day. 

Now, THAT is how you live big in a tiny house.

Final Thoughts

Well, what did we say? We listed the pragmatic things you could do to achieve a pleasurable life even if you’re residing in a tiny house. 

As you can see, it’s not that hard to live big in a tiny living space. Don’t limit yourself just because your home’s size is not gigantic. 

Remember: you can live big by starting with small steps. Just follow our effective tips above. 

Related Questions 

How big is the Tiny House Movement? 

The Tiny House Movement is not only popular in the U.S. but also in other developed countries—Japan, Germany, Britain, New Zealand, Australia, France, and Spain. People from all walks of life have started downsizing to achieve financial freedom. Some states in the U.S. are starting to be more lenient with this movement, while others are still hesitant in giving this movement a chance. 

What is the biggest tiny house?

The typical tiny house measures under 400 square feet, but the biggest tiny house you can build is 4 meters tall and 2.6 meters wide. However, some tiny house enthusiasts say you can go beyond that if you’re building an Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU). ADUs don’t have wheels, while Tiny House on Wheels (THOWs) are basically RVs, so you’re limited to their prefab size.

RVs and ADUs: Which one would suit you best?

RVs and ADUs: Which one would suit you best?

RVs and ADUs have become more in demand, as everybody is downsizing these days. From their eating habits and their clothing to their houses—people are craving more for something less in their lives. 

But how do you know which of those two is suitable for you? You must carefully consider this. Just because you’re pining for smaller dwellings doesn’t mean the consequences for the wrong choice is also tiny. 

In this blog post, we explained the differences between Recreational Vehicles (RVs) and Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs). We also listed the things you should consider when shopping for an RV or an ADU, so you can make a better-informed buying choice.

RVs and ADUs: What are the differences?

two white RVs on the mountains
RVs and ADUs: Which of them is right for you?

First, let’s make it clear. Recreational Vehicles (RVs) have wheels, but Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs) don’t. A property has to be built on a foundation to be legally considered an ADU. 

RVs are also known as tiny houses on wheels, while tiny houses on foundations may be considered as ADUs given they meet the required minimum size. That size varies in every state. 

RVs are not considered ADUs because they have added safety risks due to being mobile. As a result, they are more difficult to regulate. For instance, the city of Boise, Idaho, prohibits tiny houses on wheels (THOWs) from being recognized as ADUs. They consider THOWs as RVs and vice versa. 

ADUs can be any small structure that is a standalone unit. It can also be a former attic or garage that you remodeled, which has its own living space, bathroom, and kitchen. It can also be an added room to an already existing residential house. 

The term ADU also includes structures like casitas, cottages, granny flats, and in-law suites. RVs also have many types, including truck campers, travel trailers, toy haulers, and more, which we discussed in the later sections. 

Choosing between RVs and ADUs: Things to consider

In the later sections, we discussed the different types of RVs and ADUs. However, below, we’ll give you a rundown of the important things to consider when choosing between RVs and ADUs. 

Purpose of buying/building

cute small white house on green grass
For whom or for what are you building this property?

It’s easy to make a choice when you’re clear about your purpose of buying an RV or an ADU. And when we said clear, we meant laser-focus clear. 

For instance, ask questions like: Are you having a family member come over and/or live beside you? Are you financially equipped to tour the entire North America? 

If you want to care for your aging in-laws or elderly relatives, then an ADU will be your choice. If you already set aside a budget for travel-by-land expenses, RVs will easily fit your lifestyle. 

Don’t just plan to buy an RV or build an ADU “in case” you might need them in the future.  This is a property, mister/miss—you’re still going to spend a huge amount on these. As a result, your purpose should be clear, urgent, and sure.  

Features and amenities

ADUs can have a similar amount of amenities in a regular house. The only difference is theirs are smaller versions of their amenities.

For example, an ADU like a Granny Flat can have two bedrooms, a toilet and bath, a kitchen, a living area, a porch, and even a garage. You will not get these together with an RV. If you want to live with accessible amenities, then your best choice might be an ADU. 

Although, some RVs have bedrooms, a bathroom and toilet, a kitchen, and a common area. For instance, these travel trailers, such as the Forest River Wildwood, can let up to four people sleep, with each trailer having two to three beds.

Bigger RVs like Fifth-Wheel trailers and Travel Trailers can give ADUs a run for their money when it comes to space. However, if space, especially outdoor space for amenities, is crucial to you, we suggest building an ADU. 

Resale value

RVs and ADUs - resale value
How will this property fare in the future?

If your goal is to live a sustainable life, then you should mull over for a while. Think about a property’s resale value. 

RVs are terrible at holding their value, especially those poorly designed ones and, interestingly, the luxurious, high-end RVs. Although, if an RV is well-designed and well-maintained, it will fare well in the resale value department. 

If you don’t want something that loses its resale value in a wink, maybe an RV is not for you. 

On the other hand, since ADUs are often built separately but nearby the main house, the original property value will increase. Your original PV will increase a good half of its value at 51%

That’s why if you prefer developing your property for a tasty resale in the future, building an ADU is a good idea. 

Budget 

We’re going to give it to you straight. Both are going to be expensive! 

ADUs are basically second houses. It will still require building permits, foundation, structure, electricity, and other essential appliances you need in a regular house. 

Also, other construction fees like the System Development Charges (SDC) may apply to your project, especially if you live in Portland, Oregon. SDC is a one-time payment that will cover sewer and water fees. 

So, it wouldn’t be surprising if your expenses will almost cost you similarly to building a regular house.

RVs, meanwhile, besides their retail price, will have you spending on travel costs and vehicle maintenance fees once you’re out of the car’s warranty. 

When choosing between RVs and ADUs, make sure your budget can compensate for the hidden costs as well. 

Speed of construction 

extended porch, white RV
If you’re in a hurry to travel by land, an RV might suit you better.

This one’s easy, right? RVs are the way to go if you want something immediate. 

You just scour the internet for the best RV deals there is and you’ll find a page or two in a jiffy. If you like customization, you can even design your own RV in RV Wholesalers.

There are even tiny house kits you can use to build your own tiny house. The company will just ship the parts to you. and you can start hammering the nails. Just make sure you have a legal residential lot, first!

Meanwhile, ADUs are generally known to take longer, even if you’re building on the same lot—they often take a year and a half to build. According to Santa Cruz Green Builders, a standalone ADU will take seven months to complete. Converted garages will be faster. 

However, don’t lose hope. There are prefabricated ADUs these days. Prefab ADUs start at $50,000 and can cost as much as $120,000. 

Since they are already pre-built in the factory, they will take a lot shorter to complete. All you need to do is assemble and build it. You can even save a huge deal if you build it yourself.  

Mobility 

This is an easy one, right? If you want a mobile house, go for an RV. ADUs are stuck in your main property’s lot. So, in case you have no plans of moving to another place, ADUs should suit you. 

RVs are for people who don’t like having a permanent address. It’s also suited for people who are financially and emotionally equipped to deal with the legalities of owning a recreational vehicle. 

Living in a mobile house brings many challenges, one of them being the weather. If you’re prepared to weather-proof your RV, then great. Environmental elements will eventually scar your RV, making you spend on maintenance costs. 

Sustainability

a large red house and one small brown house
You can’t invest in a property without looking at its sustainability.

What is sustainability, anyway? It’s the capacity to maintain a property at a steady rate. 

If you want a sustainable property, then all you have to do is to… Go green!

Regardless of whether you own an ADU or an RV, maintenance costs will pile up together with your other expenses. That’s why you should take matters in your own hands before the construction begins or before you buy a prefab ADU. 

Make sure you’re working on an energy-efficient property. Consider solar panels, well-designed ventilation, environmentally-friendly construction materials and sealants, and more. 

Any ADU or RV can be energy-efficient as long as you take the time and effort in making sure it does become that way.

More about RVs and ADUs

Are ADUs expensive to build? 

RVs and ADUs - small white house
ADUs can be as expensive as a regular house.

It depends on the kind of ADU you’re trying to build. However, they are pricey to build and maintain, in general. Standalone ADUs, for example, can cost homeowners up to $400,000. You also have to pay for permit/s. Your property tax will also increase, especially if you’re making it for rent. Meanwhile, yearly maintenance costs can start at 1% of the property value. 

Types of ADUs

Casitas

Casita, in Spanish, means “tiny house”, which makes them more than qualified to be called ADU. It’s often separately built with a bigger, single-family house. In the US Southwest, you can see plenty of casitas. In fact, many realtors offer properties with ready-made casitas because of their popularity. 

Cottages

If casitas are “tiny houses,” then cottages are their more “chill” version. You can find cottages beside lakes or on seashores. They are typically more open, so the breeze can come in. However, cottages can also come in two-story forms, even having bathrooms, dirty kitchens, and bedrooms. 

Granny flats

Granny flats, like Casitas, are structures built in one lot together with the main house. Although, granny flats have more amenities and features compared to Casitas. You can say granny flats are smaller and slimmer versions of the main house.

In-law suites

Also known as “mother-in-law suites”, these structures are typically made for a family’s in-laws or/and grandparents. They are either attached to the main house or built separately on the same lot. Like granny flats, the elderly commonly live in these structures.

Guesthouse

Guesthouses are secondary housing units meant for friends and families who want to stay temporarily. The guesthouse’s difference with the previous structures is that the amenities are meant for temporary use. They could be adjusted to be viable for permanent living, of course. 

Are RVs pricey to build?

three white RVs, parked in the mountains with pillows and blankets on the ground.
RVs have the ability to drill a hole in your pocket as well. But is it worth it in the long run?

Just like an ADU, an RV is also expensive to build and own. Buying one alone can cost you up to $300,000. However, the overall cost can depend on the features, materials, type of RV, and your state’s imposed sales tax (if you’re buying one). 

So, some types can cost cheaper than others because of their design and amenities. In choosing an RV, you also have to consider the tax laws in the state in which you’re planning to register your RV.

Types of RV trailers

Classic travel trailers

These RVs stay faithful to their name. Travel trailers are not complicated to set up in camping grounds. You can also park most travel trailers in campsites. So, if you’re the type to move around a lot and camp with your friends, the travel trailer is a worthy investment. 

Truck campers

If you want a reliable RV with incredible towing power, you should start looking for truck campers. You can cook, do number 1 and number 2, and sleep on a truck camper. However, we don’t recommend bringing a lot of stuff since most truck campers have limited storage. 

Fifth-wheel trailers

If you see yourself living in an RV for a long time, this is your choice. It’s more spacious and has more storage area. It’s easily recognizable for its elevated frontal part, which gives the illusion of two floors. You can even set up an outdoor kitchen area with this. 

Toy haulers

This RV is more suitable for business use, especially if your business involves towing motorcycles and smaller cars like golf carts. It has a big rear opening and a ramp. Since they can also serve as fifth-wheel trailers, they become heavier once they carry another motor vehicle. 

Pop-up trailers

Pop-up trailers are soft-sided small and cheap trailers. Soft-sided means their sidewalls are made of cloth or plastic. Although, some sellers are already making pop-up trailers with hard sides or frames. Pop-up trailers are usually for temporary use since they don’t have enough space for storage and essential facilities like a bathroom. 

Hybrid trailers

Hybrids are a mix of pop-ups and travel trailers. They are still lightweight like a pop-up, but they have more space like a travel trailer. It also comes with a small bathroom, a canvass, and a kitchen. You can’t park it in your garage because of its bigger size, but it can sit comfortably on a camping site.

The bottom line

In choosing between RVs and ADUs, you will go through many considerations. You might even give up and slide back to looking for regular homes. 

However, you must not falter because the truth is there is no perfect RV or ADU. 

As long as either of these two dwellings meets your needs, keeps you safe, and enriches your life, then you are free to choose one. Your choice won’t lead you to a doomed life. 

Regardless, just keep learning and watching out for regulations, so you can live a healthy and sustainable downsized life. 

Related questions

Should I buy a travel trailer? 

If you’re a single person who lives an “on-the-go” lifestyle, and if you see yourself in the future sustaining it, then, by all means, consider buying one. However, if you see yourself settling with a family, please reconsider. Raising a kid in a travel trailer poses many challenges. We don’t recommend it unless you are emotionally and financially prepared.

How long do RVs last?

Similar to other vehicles (or house-vehicle hybrid), RVs will last up to two decades or fifteen years if you work hard to maintain them. If you skip service schedules, it might only last a decade or even less. You can also drive an RV up to more than 250,000 miles if you take good care of it. So, remember to do preventative care on your RV, especially if you travel around a lot or/and live with your family in it.

Tiny Homes Living: How to Live and Adjust to a Tiny Life

Tiny Homes Living: How to Live and Adjust to a Tiny Life

Woman holding tiny wooden house
As beautiful as it sounds, adjusting to the tiny house lifestyle could be easy as long as you are well prepared.

In most cases, the decision to move into a tiny house is due to financial reasons. Nowadays, the cost of housing keeps on rising. It has become unaffordable to everyone most especially to those who are earning limited income. But with tiny houses, the cost of living is drastically reduced. 

And while money matters keep most things rolling, there will be times that the process of owning a tiny house will become more personal. The focus will drift to the challenges of how you and your family will make it living in a tiny house. How will you start living in a tiny house then?

At first, you will find yourself lost in the middle of nowhere. But eventually, you’ll find the track soon. You might find the transition hard since you’ve been living differently before but in no time, things will get better. 

Living in a tiny house will make you scrutinize the things you own and how you spend your time. This means that you have to thoroughly go through the possessions you have collected and the habits you have developed throughout the years. 

Here are some things that will help you adjust to your tiny house lifestyle. 

Preparation Tips

1. Go Spend Time in a Tiny Space

Obviously, you just can buy or build a tiny house without looking for one that is already built and complete. Ideally, you should not just take a look at it but you should take your time staying in it. 

The tiny house lifestyle is not one size fits all. It is not for everyone. So, it is best for you to spend your time living in one to get the vibe and find out if it works for you. 

Spending your time in a tiny house first before having your own is much better. This will save you from wasting your time and money into something that is not fitted for you. Also, this will give you a grasp of how living in a tiny house is. 

If you are wondering where you can find a tiny house where you can stay for a few days, you can easily find one online. Just make sure that you are booking with a legit owner. Perhaps, this is one of the best ideas to give you a glimpse of how your life will be once you live in a tiny house. 

2. Determine What’s Really Important in Life

If you already have decided to live in a tiny house then it’s high time to start figuring out your wants and needs in life. Tiny houses are around 400 to 500 square feet only. This means that your space is very limited. 

This also means that you have to let go of some if not most of the stuff that you have. This includes the things that you are not actually using that have been piled up in your cabinet. 

You will find yourself choosing between wants and needs. But of course, since you will be living in a tiny house, your needs should be your priority. Having your wants means less space for you. 

Which of the things that you have are you willing to let go? Answering this is very hard most especially when you are sentimental. But you have to go through this process when you want to live in a tiny house. 

Determine the ones that really matter, the ones that are important, the ones that you really and set aside the things that you don’t actually need. Practice living the minimalist lifestyle because you’ll be living with it as long as you are staying in a tiny house. You have to keep things as minimal as possible for lesser clutter and to make your tiny house look better as well.

Tiny house with porch
Living in a tiny house is a big step that is not easy to take when you are not prepared.

3. Start Getting Rid of Your Stuff

Most probably, decluttering is one of the hardest preparations for living in a tiny house. Letting go of your stuff, even just the ‘junk’, is not as easy as it sounds. But believe us, it feels good to let go of the things that you have accumulated through the years – the ones that you are not using and just displayed there. 

Just the mere fact of taking out the clothes you are not using is hard. But this will give you satisfaction. It will make you rejoice for how far you’ve come due to your tiny house living plans. 

If you are already living in a tiny house lifestyle, you are already used to being a minimalist. If it is your first time, you’ll have a head time, but don’t worry, you’ll get there. 

You might find your closet lacking before but actually, you have more than what is needed when living in a tiny house. All this time, you are living with too much stuff because you believed that you needed them when in reality, you don’t. 

You thought that it makes your house look more beautiful, but it just made it look cluttered. You are so used to every single thing that is placed inside your house that letting go of any of them is difficult. But that is how it goes. You have decided to live in a tiny house, so bear with it. 

No-fuss. Living in a tiny house could be one of your best decisions ever. Your stuff might mean something to you, but you don’t have to dwell on them forever. Besides, it will just make your tiny house small.

So, go. Pack the things that you need and let go of the things that you don’t need. You won’t regret it, promise. The results will make you thank yourself for doing it.

4. Learn to Ignore the Critics

Critics won’t just go anywhere. They will always be there. They will always have a say on everything you do. So, ignore them. 

Most probably, they will have something to say again with your decision to live in a tiny house. They will get every single chance that they have to question your decision to live in a tiny house. Do not let them change your plans. In simpler terms, do not listen to them. 

Do not let them decide for you. You, for sure, know what you want. Go for it. 

Instead of listening to their nonsense opinion, listen to people who support you with your decision. Be with the people who share the same interest as you. The ones who know how the tiny house lifestyle is. 

At this point, negative vibes are not welcome. As always, stay on the positive side. Let’s face it. Deciding to live in a tiny house is scary, but is not as scary as letting others decide for you. 

5. Stop Being a Crazed Consumer

Nowadays, living in a big space feels like a must, and owning a lot of stuff is a need. But realistically speaking, living in a big space with a lot of stuff depends on how responsible you are in maintaining them. 

The society today is very consumerist. You believed that you have to buy more and more to be happy and satisfied. You believed that you need to own a lot of stuff to be on top. 

It is very important that you stop this lifestyle and do not fall for this notion again once you live in a tiny house. Admit it, you are as guilty as us when it comes to us. But it is time to change that lifestyle and start being a minimalist. 

Their offer might sound good but that’s how it really is. Marketing is their forte, always remember that. You don’t actually need the latest and most innovative products to keep you living. They are not the air that you breathe or the food that you eat. 

Stop being a crazed customer. Start purchasing the ones that are just really needed. You don’t have to live with the hype.

Mobile tiny house interior. Great for outdoor experiences and wildlife. Lots of space and pure adventure. No need for special authorizations, only a decent car to pull this tiny house and off you go.
With such limited space, having your own personal space is almost impossible not unless you are creative and resourceful.

6. Define Your Idea of Meaningful Space

In the house where you are living right now, which of the spaces that you have mean so much to you? What part of the house do you spend most of your time? Which space could you not imagine not having?

It’s time to start figuring out the spaces in your house that mean a lot to you. This will help you come up with the best plan for your tiny house and tiny life. 

Traditional houses have a lot of spaces which you can’t have in a tiny house. Besides, the spaces that you have in a tiny house is the miniature version of everything. So, which of the spaces are you willing to let go of?

Knowing the space that means a lot to you is your very first step towards planning your tiny house. This is very important in order for you to maximize your tiny house. This will also keep you away from wasting any space. 

Remember, every inch of space matters when you are living in a tiny house. It is understandable that you want every single part of a traditional house, but you just can’t. So, start weighing which of the spaces are the heaviest to you.

7. Find Your Tiny House Community

Just like you, there are a lot of people who want to live in a tiny house too. They are everywhere, waiting for you. And, they are very ready to give you all the information that you need to kick start your tiny house life. 

With them, you will get the advice that you need in order to begin. How will you find them out?

Start by searching for tiny homes near you. Find groups of tiny house owners on Facebook. Get in touch with bloggers of tiny houses. Ask people you know in case they know someone who owns a tiny house. 

There are actually a lot of things that you can do to widen your connection with tiny house owners. This step is very important when preparing to live in a tiny house. Why?

More or less, these people are the ones who know about building codes, zoning, and constructing and living in a tiny house. With them, you can get the information that you need in order to keep you going. It’s time to outsource all the information that you need in order for you to survive the tiny house lifestyle.

[Read: The Ultimate List Of Tiny Home Communities]

Things to Consider when Planning to Live in a Tiny House

Sussex County NJ USA June 17 2017 Inside a tiny house at a tiny house expo
There are a lot of things that you have to consider when planning to live in a tiny house for a smoother transition.

1. Toilet 

Living in a tiny house isn’t exactly the same as living in a traditional house. This means that you have to deal with problems you are not dealing with before. And that includes problems with a toilet. 

Choosing the right toilet for your tiny house is a very important and critical decision that you have to face. Having the right toilet in your tiny house will not just make you feel comfortable but will also save you from any problem soon. If you want to travel from one place to another with your tiny house, then you have to look for a good alternative to the traditional flush toilet. 

Keep in mind that you have to keep your toilet at a limited space due to your already limited space. Soundproofing your toilet also matters. Sure enough, you don’t want to be embarrassed with the sounds that you make when using the toilet.

2. Personal Space

If you have tried living in a dorm, you probably know the struggle of not having your own personal space. Having time on your own is very difficult given the tight same that dorm rooms offer. And with the limited space that tiny houses have to offer, you have to be as creative as you can to have your very own personal space. 

A good way to have your very own personal space on your tiny house is to divide your house strategically. You can use curtains to have some privacy. You could also make use of wall dividers if you want. 

Also, in as much as possible, do not let anyone enter your room. Keep that space for yourself only. You could share the rest of the space with others but at least have something you can call your own. 

3. Lights 

It can be very easy for small spaces to feel and get dark. This makes it very important to have a light source wherever it is possible. The light source could either be natural or not. 

Have big windows in your tiny house where natural light can pass through. Natural lights can do magic. They can easily lift up and set the mood of your tiny house. 

When you have a good number of windows, do not cover them up with curtains. It is even better if you don’t put curtains at all. If not, use blinds to cover-up your windows during the night. 

To control the amount of light in your tiny house, install recessed lighting that has dimmer switches. You could also put string lights in nooks and lamps in corners. When setting up lights, it would be better to have them hanged to save space and expand the space visually.

4. Maintenance 

In maintaining your tiny house, don’t let yourself stay in repair mode. Fix any damage repaired as soon as possible. Do regular maintenance checks as well. 

Doing regular maintenance check is very important in order to find out any problem and prevent it from getting more serious. Living in a tiny house doesn’t mean that you are exempted from maintaining it. Besides, you have to be more keen on it most especially when you are on the move. 

Some of the things that you have to regularly check include roof leaks, appliance upkeep problems, and plumbing and electrical issues. If what you have is a mobile tiny house, the tires, brakes, and bearings also have to be checked.

When planning or already living in a tiny house, do not forget to maintain it. Maintaining your tiny house plays a pivotal role in how long your tiny house will last. It also has something to do with your safety, so make this your priority.

5. Lifestyle

The tiny house lifestyle isn’t the same as the lifestyle you’re used to. Remember, your tiny house isn’t just a house, it’s a lifestyle. And, you have to adapt to that lifestyle. 

If you are into the arts, then make sure that everything will still look clean and organized once you are done doing your stuff. If you can’t live without a dryer, then you should have a bigger space. In such a case, it would even be better to have your tiny house built on a foundation. 

Do not forget that you can always customize your tiny house. Do not settle for anything less. Feel free to do whatever you want with your tiny house. Just make sure that you do not overdo anything.

Tips For Adjusting To Life In A Tiny House

Small white kitchen, red components
IT is not easy to adjust to the tiny house lifestyle, but being prepared will make it easy.

Over the past few years, the tiny house movement has become a very trending topic. It’s growing popularity has invited a lot of people. But, they just see this as a bigger dollhouse, not something that they could see themselves living in. 

This is because the idea of transitioning from a big house into an ultra-small one isn’t attractive to others. But then again, tiny houses exist for a reason – the so-called “modern conveniences”. So, how will you adjust to living in a tiny house?

Here are some of the most common questions asked about the concept of tiny house living which will help you prepare and adjust to this lifestyle.

1. How Do You Fit My 3-Bedroom Lifestyle into a Tiny House?

At a maximum, tiny houses only measure 500 square feet. This means that you have to put everything you necessarily need in such a limited space. This could be not your piece of cake. 

This means that you and your family should figure out the stuff that you necessarily need in order to live. Regardless of your effort, it would be impossible to put everything you have with such a limited space. So, minimalism is the key. 

Bring only the ones that you really need – from clothes, the decorative pieces, and more. It would also be good if you do the one thing in, one thing out practice. This way, your tiny house will not look cramped. 

This doesn’t mean that you can’t have a little luxury. Of course, you can. You just have to keep things at a minimum. Remember to focus on the quality over the quantity of the items that you have.

2. Where Do You Put Your Clothes?

Just like everyone else, you probably have a lot of clothes. Some, if not most, of these clothes are still unused yet you just can’t let them go. This is because you thought you could use it one day. 

But once you have decided to live in a tiny house, this mindset is not applicable. Living in a tiny house entails reducing the number of clothes that you have. But this does not necessarily mean that you have to eliminate all the clothes you have.

This does not also mean that you should have four outfits only. That’s not how it goes. When loving in a tiny house, it would be better if you go for an interchangeable wardrobe. You could also opt for multipurpose clothes. 

This way, you save space and money at the same time. You can also go away from getting frustrated by deciding what you should wear. 

3. What about Cooking and Cleaning?

You might be wondering how you will cook in your tiny house. Cooking in a tiny house doesn’t mean that you will cook on your child’s tiny range. There are a lot of compact appliances that you can purchase for your tiny house. 

In fact, there are already appliances that are specifically made for tiny houses. These appliances will perfectly fit your tiny house as long as it is designed well. This means that you can still cook the way you do in your big house. 

You could also have an outdoor cooking space if you want. An outdoor kitchen is perfect if you want to camp or grill every now and then. You can also custom build your kitchen in a way that will perfectly fit your kitchen appliances.

4. Are the Bathrooms Outside?

Not unless you want to have your bathroom outside, the bathroom of a tiny house is inside. Tiny house bathrooms have been well adapted to tiny houses. Besides, most tiny house builders customize the bathroom in order for it to fit in a tiny house. 

Despite their size, tiny houses are still equipped with the smaller version of the necessities of personal hygiene. And throughout the years, tiny house builders have come up with creative ways to incorporate bathroom luxuries into tiny houses. These luxuries come in compact sizes. 

The toilet in a tiny house is compact but is not as tiny as you think. You can still use them comfortably. You do not have to worry that you will be getting out of balance. There’s no big difference in using a regular toilet.

5. Am I Supposed to Live Without a Garage?

There is no such tiny house rule which stops you from owning a few properties. You could still have separate space as you want and need. Have a different or adjoining room for spaces such as your office, craft room, garage and so much more. 

Living in a tiny house, but this doesn’t mean that you have to stop doing what you love just because you do not have the space to do so. You could always have a separate space for that. Besides, living in a tiny house could save you money which you can use to meet your other needs. 

When you have a car that requires you to have a garage, feel free to have one. You could have it adjoined into your tiny house or place it in a different place as long as it is near you.

Conclusion

Deciding to live in a tiny house is one of the bravest things you can do. The start may be hard but you’ll enjoy it as time goes by. Do not let the challenges bring you down, let it be your inspiration to go through. 

Related Questions

How long does it take for me to adjust to the tiny house lifestyle?

Adjusting to the tiny house lifestyle could take months or years. It all depends on you. Adjusting could be easy if you have planned to live in a tiny house for so long and if you are very willing to go through the process as well. Just remember that forcing yourself to adapt to the lifestyle won’t help. Let yourself adjust naturally. Adjusting is a step by step process, not a one time process. 

Is it better if I live alone first in a tiny house?

Ideally, you should have someone with you in the first few days that you will be living in your tiny house. This will help you adjust faster to the tiny house lifestyle. Living alone right when you moved into your tiny house could make it hard for you to adjust.

Tiny House Living: 8 Clever Ideas to Maximize Your Space

Tiny House Living: 8 Clever Ideas to Maximize Your Space

Everything is Open in Small Modern White Kitchen
Maximizing the space of a tiny house isn’t as hard as you thought – just be creative.

Living in a tiny house means having limited space. This also means that you have to be very smart and clever to put everything you need in there. But how?

The answer relies on how you will get the most out of the spaces that you have. Yes, space is limited, but your imagination and creativity are unlimited. You just have to be creative and imaginative to come up with amazing ideas on how you can maximize your space. 

It might be a little bit challenging, but once you get its rhythm, it will come out easily. Plus, it is fun too especially when you do it with family and friends. So, here are some of the things that you could do to maximize the space in your tiny house. 

1. Find Space Storage in Unique Locations

Unlike traditional homes, tiny houses don’t have basements or attics where you can store your stuff. You don’t have all the space you need to accommodate all the luxurious items that you want. Besides, living in a tiny house will require you to look for storage in spaces you never thought are useful.

Thankfully, interior designers and architects have taken the challenge of creating storage space in very small spaces. So, if you can’t handle this problem, the best thing to do is ask for professional help. This way, you can maximize the space that your tiny house has to offer.

But if you do not have the budget, you can do it yourself instead. For example, instead of having a dish cabinet in the counter, you can opt for a hanging dish drying cabinet. This way, you can save counter space. It looks posher as well.

If you’re looking for a reliable hanging dish dryer, we recommend Junyuan Hanging Dish Drying Rack.

There is actually a lot of space in your tiny house. Some of them are waiting for you to discover them. You just have to figure them out and start using them creatively.  Who knows, the space under your table might serve a purpose, right?

2. Go Vertical

In most homes, vertical spaces are of no use. But when it comes to tiny houses, vertical spaces are very useful. These vertical spaces are basically empty canvasses waiting for you to design it the way you wish. 

Using vertical spaces for storage purposes is a very practical way to store your stuff. And at times, they save you from spending too much just to fill all your things in your tiny house. Here are some ways on how you can maximize the vertical spaces of your tiny house:

a. Add a vertical garden 

Adding a vertical garden in your tiny house is a very practical way to maximize your vertical space. With this, you are saving money and getting the most out of your space at the same time. You will no longer find yourself lacking any of the spices that you need when cooking. 

We found this Meiwo Hanging Vertical Garden Wall Planter. Check it out!

b. Consider shelving above your doorways

You might not have considered it yet, but your doorway can actually store some of the stuff that you have. When doing so, you have to make it look more open first. This is because you will be placing items at an eye level. 

Check this Soduku Floating Shelves Wall Mounted we found. They might be perfect for your doors.

You can simply add a shelf and there you go. You can already display the stuff that you have such as bowls, vases, and other decorative items that you have. Shelving your doorways is a very practical way to redecorate your tiny house. 

c. Think thin and tall

If your tiny house offers a lot of vertical space, then ideally, you should incorporate tall pieces rather than the wide ones. Doing so does not just add visual variation but it also makes your tiny house more interesting. 

Thankfully, you do not have to splurge your hard-earned cash on expensive furniture just to achieve this look. You can simply stack several pieces of art. You can also add framed family pictures vertically to add height to your vertical space. 

How about this SEI Furniture Metal Spine Book Tower?

d. Make the most of closet space by organizing

There is a lot of vertical space in your closet that is being wasted. So, how will you get the most out of the space in your closet? Shelving is the answer. 

Shelving gives you easy storage for your personal items such as shoes, handbags, and the like. High-end closets are obviously expensive. Luckily, there are a lot of low-cost closet organizers that you can easily find in stores. 

Use this Hershii Closet Tension Shelf & Rod Expandable Metal Storage Rack to create more storage space on your closet.

e. Add vertical space under the bed with risers

Too much stuff will make your tiny house bedroom look cluttered. It will also make it look even smaller. If you want to maximize the space in your bedroom, adding bed risers is your best bet. 

Bed risers instantly give you space where you can store stuff you do not frequently use. This is more practical rather than buying other furniture where you can place your stuff. Besides, this is a perfect way to hide clutter from your eyesight.

White kitchen with red components, cosy tiny home after the reconstruction in panel house
Maximizing the space of a tiny house will require you to think outside the box.

3. Slatwall Shelving

Slatwall panels are a superb way to maximize the space in your tiny house. These are flexible storage spaces that can accommodate different items for you. From books to vases and more, Slatwall shelves are your perfect go-to for your tiny house. 

Slatwall is also a good alternative to a nightstand table. You just have to figure it out if it works on the space where you will be installing it. 

Aside from giving you more space in your tiny house, Slatwall shelves also make your room more aesthetic. They can make your tiny house look more spacious.

Slatwall shelves are very easy to install. And because they are made of aluminum, they are very lightweight yet extremely durable and versatile.

Ideally, heavier Slatwall systems are better. This is because they allow virtually endless space storage for almost anything. They can be custom designed as well. 

Slat walls can be used as anchors for hooks, hanging rods, shelves, and any other thing that you want to display in your tiny house. Best of all, they are more affordable than traditional shelves.

4. Creative Outdoor Storage

Sure enough, you have outdoor stuff that you need to store as well. Bringing these things inside your tiny house is not advised due to the limited space that you have. What will you do then?

In such cases, what you can do is to make the most out of your outdoor space. For example, your outdoor stairs can be used as a shoe store. Or, you can store your gardening tools and supplies there. 

This will not just save you indoor space but it also helps you secure your outdoor items. Thus, you do not have to worry so much about them.

Here are some of the things that you can do to maximize the outdoors of your tiny house:

a. Use a hanging organizer to store gardening tools

A hanging organizer is like baking soda—it literally fixes everything. Having a hanging organizer outside your tiny house is very helpful. 

You can use it to store your crafts, cleaning supplies, shoes, winter accessories, and so much more. In addition, hanging organizers can also be used to store gardening tools and supplies. This includes twine, gloves, clippers, seed packets, and plant stakes. 

Interior design of a kitchen and bathroom in a tiny rustic log cabin.
In most cases, living in a tiny house will require you to use compact items in order to fit the space.

b. Have an outdoor cooking space

An outdoor cooking space is a good idea if you want to have more space when cooking. It is also more ideal if you love camping. This will make cooking, grilling to be more particular, a lot easier. 

Baking is also possible. An outdoor cooking space is perfect for anyone who loves the outdoors. Besides, staying outdoors will help you save electric bills for air conditioners and the smoke system as well. 

Check out this very conventional CUISINART CGG-888 Grill. It’s perfect for the outdoors!

c. Have a hammock 

Having a hammock outside can make your tiny house look bigger and wider than it actually is. It also gives you extra space to relax during the day or even when the night is still young. It is also a fun way to enjoy the outdoors of your tiny house.

5. Go for a pull out bed 

If you want to maximize your floor space in your bedroom, you can use a pull out bed. A pull out bed is easier to manage on a daily basis especially when you want to keep things organized most of the time. Pull out beds can also accommodate more, so, you will not need any additional beds. 

You will also have more space during the day and have enough sleeping space for everyone during the night. This is a good option aside from beds with storage under them.

Pull out beds are very versatile.  It can convert the living room of your tiny house into a guest room or a compact bedroom. With this, you can enjoy your living room while you can easily sleep at any time of the day. 

It is also very ideal if you want to stay up late at night to watch a movie. This is because this allows you to stay in a comfortable position. It is also a perfect choice if you work at home since you can just lie down and take a break in between shifts.

6. Buy furniture that is multifunctional

Having a bed with bookshelf on its headboard and drawers below it is already three furniture pieces combined into one. Using multifunctional furniture in your tiny house is very useful given the limited space that you have. With such furniture, you have more space for other items while saving money. 

The more furniture you have, the more clutter there will be. The chance that your tiny house will look disorganized is also higher. These things will make your tiny house even look smaller. 

Having multifunctional furniture pieces in your tiny house helps you reduce clutter. This is because the number of furniture pieces in your tiny house is reduced. It also highlights the beauty of your tiny house, making it more inviting and bigger. 

In addition, multifunctional furniture is also easier to clean and maintain. You only have a few pieces to clean so, you won’t be rushing just to clean your entire place. Cleaning your tiny house will take you less time, so you can dedicate the rest of your time to other things.

Consider this Sauder Dakota Pass Lift-Top Coffee Table as an example. It works as a coffee table, storage, and study desk.

7. Get items off the floor

The holy grail to having more space in your tiny house is to keep items off the floor. Of course, you can still put rugs or furniture on the floor. Keeping items off the floor means not using the floor to store your stuff. 

Do not use the floor of your tiny house as storage. In no time, your floor will end up as a dumping ground. And, your tiny house will look messy with no space for other things.

The best thing that you can do is to do shelving. This will make your tiny house less cluttered. Doing so also makes cleaning the floor easier. 

In as much as possible, keep things off the floor – including your shoes. Learn to put them into organizers or shelves. If that is not possible, at least keep items on the floor as minimal as possible. 

8. Declutter

Less is more is very applicable when it comes to tiny houses. Actually, having a small space is the problem. Having too much stuff is the issue. 

Letting go of the things you have is very hard. This is because you think that you can use them one day. But, when is that one day coming?

If you want to maximize the space of your tiny house while keeping things peaceful, calm, and uncluttered, learn to declutter. Declutter by figuring out first the things that you actually need and the things that you will not use now or soon. 

Start by finding out all the things that you have and separating the items that you necessarily need from the items that are useless to you. 

Decluttering might be hard to start but it is very freeing once you are done with it. Remember, your space is very limited. Your tiny house can’t accommodate all your items. 

The best way to keep your tiny house look organized is to declutter. This will also help you maximize the space of your tiny house. So, go, purge as much as you can’t.

Find out more hacks here.

Conclusion 

The space in your tiny house is very limited. You might find it almost impossible to fit all your necessary things in there. But as long as you know how to get the most out of your limited space, fitting them all won’t be as hard as you think. 

Related Questions

Is it possible to cook in a tiny house?

Yes, it is very possible to cook in a tiny house. In fact, tiny houses have kitchens which you can use to cook all the food that you want. You can cook in your tiny house whenever you feel like doing so. 

If you are into cooking, you can have your tiny house designed with a bigger kitchen. This will give you enough space to move around while doing what you love. Space is the only difference that makes tiny houses different from traditional houses. 

What is best: propane or a wood stove?

Propane is more favorable. This is because wood stoves need to be tended from time to time. They also need more clearance to the wall so your space becomes more limited. 

Propane, on the other hand, is directly mounted to the wall. Thus, less space is required.

Tiny Houses and Taxes: Everything You Need to Know

Tiny Houses and Taxes: Everything You Need to Know

Tiny houses and taxes: do these two words even belong in the same sentence?

The essence of the Tiny House Movement is downsizing. The primary aim of people moving into tinier homes is financial freedom. But does that really happen?

Sure, compared to regular (in this case, larger) houses, tiny houses generate cheaper utility bills. Still, you have to deal with the possible hidden costs of this movement, one of them being taxes. 

Are you planning to move into a tiny house soon? You might want to read up before you buy that prefab kit

In this post, we discussed everything you need to know about tiny houses and taxes.

About property taxes

tiny houses and taxes - property tax word on magazine
North American homeowners pay property taxes every year.

First, let’s have a recap about property taxes in the United States. 

What are property taxes?

American homeowners pay an annual property tax, based on the value of their purchased houses.  You can also say it’s how the local government makes money or revenue.

If you own land and built a house on it, you will pay an annual property tax. If you fail to pay it, the government may have to seize your property. At the beginning of this tax collection, a tax authority will conduct a property tax assessment

Why are property taxes important?

If you don’t pay your home taxes, you could lose your house. Besides that, property taxes are important because they sustain public infrastructure—public schools, libraries, community centers, parks and recreation, etc. Without these funds, those facilities would not survive on their own. 

How are property taxes in the U.S. calculated?

The tax authority will conduct a property tax assessment on a scheduled date. Through this, they can calculate your home’s assessed value. As for the amount of your property tax, you can multiply your home’s assessed value by your local government’s imposed tax rate. The result is your property tax. 

How are property taxes collected? 

The local government annually collects property taxes. If you buy a house, you also have to pay a property tax during the transferring of the house. This is also called the Real Estate Transfer Tax or simply Transfer tax. 

What is the average property tax rate in the U.S.?

Homeowners typically pay 1.2% tax rates, but it can range from 0.4% to 2.44%. The main factor in the property tax rate in a state is the cost of living. A homeowner can annually pay a property tax as low as $560, but it can balloon into $7,800, depending on where he or she lives. 

States with property taxes: Lowest Vs. highest 

If you want to pay the lowest property taxes, you can live in the following states: Alabama, West Virginia, South Carolina, Arkansas, Louisiana, Hawaii, or Delaware.

Don’t want to pay a giant property tax? Avoid these states at all costs: New Jersey, New York, Wisconsin, Connecticut, New Hampshire, Illinois, Massachusetts. 

Tiny houses and taxes

tiny houses and taxes - a row of colorful tiny houses in a grassy land
A row of colorful tiny houses in a grassy land

Will owning or buying a tiny house on wheels still involve taxation? We answered your questions below. 

Does a property tax apply to tiny houses? 

The property tax for regular houses does not apply to tiny houses. However, if you will live in a state that collects personal property taxes for motor vehicles, then you still might have to pay it. Tiny houses towed by a car is considered a recreational vehicle (RV) in many states, so the same taxation rules might apply to them as well. 

What is a personal property tax? 

Tangible Personal Property (TPP) or Personal Property taxes are levied on mobile properties—boats, RVs, campers, etc. In some states, TPP taxes are also imposed on anything that generates incomes. For instance, if you own a mechanic shop or an apartment rental, the state will still levy TPP taxes on the equipment and furniture. 

What are the states that don’t levy TPP taxes?

A report by Tax Foundation in 2012 stated that ten states in the U.S. have stopped imposing TPP taxes. Still, most states still levy TPP taxes, especially on businesses. 

What are the taxes I might pay for my tiny house on wheels? 

Tiny houses on wheels are RVs, hence you will be levied for the same taxes. If your state imposes the following, then you have to pay for them: sales tax, Tangible Personal Property (TPP) tax, Mortgage Interest Deduction, real estate tax, and a home office, if you have one. 

How to avoid paying for a sales tax on an RV?

The tricky solution is buying an RV and then registering it in a state that doesn’t levy sales taxes. However, you can’t easily do this because some states require minimum years of residence from a person before they register your RV.

More about tiny houses and taxes

tiny houses and taxes - tiny house at night
Property taxes don’t apply to a mobile tiny house, but you still have to watch out for other types of taxes.

Whether you’re building or buying a tiny house in the US, you must know the different taxes or the tax breaks that you might possibly encounter. After all, the laws about tiny houses and taxes vary in every state, so knowing these will prepare you for that possibility. 

Taxes

Sales tax

When you buy a tiny house on wheels, you might also pay for a sales tax if your state levies it. Alaska, Oregon, Montana, New Hampshire, and Delaware don’t have a sales tax. According to Avalara, it’s easier to register an RV in Montana because of a registration rule loophole. 

Real estate transfer tax 

In a real estate transaction or the transferring of the property’s title, the buyer and the seller must pay a transfer tax. They can split it halfway; it depends on their agreement. The seller can also pay it on their own. The state will also determine the transfer tax based on the property’s market value and classification. 

Death taxes 

1. Gift tax. 

Donator’s tax or gift tax is imposed on the transfer of property, whether the giver is living or already dead. When you give a property that costs more than $15,000, the government will levy you a transfer tax starting at 18%. There are many exemptions to this tax.

2. Estate tax. 

When a person suddenly dies, the government will levy an indirect tax on the transfer of the property. An indirect tax is what sellers add to the original price or a product, so the buyer indirectly pays their tax through buying the product, in lieu of the seller. 

3. Generation-skipping tax (GST). 

This tax is imposed on the transfer of a property or a gift to a younger relative or unrelated person (at least 37 ½ younger). For example, when a grandmother transfers the ownership of a house to her grandson, the GST will also take effect on the latter, even after the death of her grandmother. This also ensures that he will pay the 40% flat rate.

Tax breaks

Mortgage Interest Tax Deduction

This tax break gives homeowners a chance to minimize their taxable income. Since a tiny house on wheels is still a house, you can also claim your mortgage interest tax deduction on it. If you bought a tiny house after December 15, 2017, you could reduce the first $750,000 in your mortgage. 

Home office tax deduction 

Do you plan to work in your tiny house? The home office tax says hello. It’s a tax break for any functioning office in a dwelling that measures less than 300 square feet. If you have this at your tiny house, you can use this for a deduction.

Tiny house resale values

tiny house on wheels with black car in grassy area
The tiny house lifestyle is indeed cheap, but their market value depletes easily too.

Just because you’re about to make your nomad dream come true doesn’t mean you shouldn’t think about the future anymore. Besides the taxes, you also have to think about a tiny house’s depreciation. Here are the facts about tiny houses’ resale values.

Do tiny homes retain their value?

Things that get easily damaged also lose their value faster. That is why over time, tiny houses depreciate because they are more prone to wear and tear. 

Since the space is limited, the easier it is to mess a tiny house. Over time, these scratches and dents become more obvious. As a result, their market value quickly depletes. 

There’s also the likelihood of dust gathering. If the occupants aren’t savvy in choosing their appliances, causing them to buy more things. As a result, you have to be extremely meticulous about your equipment because tiny home appliances are more expensive. 

Because tiny house appliances don’t have standard measurements, like those sold in malls or appliance centers, people have them customized if they can’t find a furnished prefab house package. 

Are tiny homes relatively cheap to own? 

Sure, tiny houses are mobile and light. They are in demand. They are also relatively more inexpensive than regular houses to maintain. Despite those qualities, they are not always cheap to own. 

Owning a tiny house involves many hidden costs, which may be surprising to many people. If you’re not careful or savvy enough, you might spend on external storage and unnecessary upgrades.

How to retain my tiny house’s value?

Planning to resell your tiny house in a few years? Well, get ready to spend on some improvements. If you’re serious about reselling this tiny property, just follow these golden, foolproof tips. 

Spend on smart improvements.

Not all upgrades are necessary. Think about the tiny house on wheels (THOW) enthusiasts. What kind of people are they and what are their needs? Think about investing in improvements that cater to their needs. It can range from a dehumidifier and solar panels to an HVAC system

Care for your SUV or pickup truck. 

Just because the vehicle that tows your car is for heavy-duty use doesn’t mean you have to skimp on maintaining them. Don’t be complacent in your car. You want a THOW with fully-functioning wheels, right? Therefore, follow your vehicle’s manufacturer-required service schedule.

Plus, make sure to use a sturdy and reliable towing kit. Check out this Reese Towpower 21536RAK  Kit.

Connect with other people with nomad lifestyles.

People who have been on the road for a long time know the crucial tricks in maintaining their lifestyle. If this is your first time pursuing this lifestyle, you could use a tip or two from them—or even more!

They know how to navigate this kind of living more than anyone, especially the safety and maintenance tricks, without slashing a hole in your pocket. 

Take heed of your local government’s regulations. 

Rules are not here to ruin your life; they exist to put it in order. It will not hurt for you to read your local government’s laws about tiny houses. Give your state’s ol’ dusty building code book a skim.

If you live on your own, you will DIY most of the time, right? So, you should keep a stack of your town’s construction and zoning codes when the going gets tough. 

Renting out tiny houses: Does it work? 

two tiny houses on wheels in grassy land
It’s possible to profit from renting out tiny houses, but make sure there’s a market for it, first.

Think of renting out a tiny house under 400 square feet? Here’s a short overview of it. 

Is it possible to profit from a tiny house?

You can start renting it out as a vacation house. You can lease it as a writing cabin. Nomad people or backpackers need someplace to stay from time to time—and they’re looking for cheaper places than hostels and AirBnBs. 

The overheads might be lesser than if you live in it. 

This is provided that you have a red hot market. If you do, and if you’re into short-term rentals, you can expect lower maintenance costs.

What are the possible businesses you can do with tiny houses?

You have several ideal choices—a Bed and Breakfast business, an apartment, and a food truck business. There are other brighter ideas if you’re creative. Of course, you have to watch out for the sales tax and rental tax. 

In a nutshell

The bottom line is every state imposes different, localized tax rules and breaks for every homeowner. 

As a tiny house owner or to-be-owner, you might deal with either more complicated tax rules or none at all. That’s why you should take the time to talk to a tax authority or study local resources about your town’s tax legalities. 

If you fail to pay—or even fail to be aware of such a regulation exists for tiny houses—you might face dire consequences. 

We’re not scaring you, but you might lose your house, your dream lifestyle. So, do your best to investigate!  

Related questions

What are the tiny house laws in Texas? 

Texas is very accommodating to the Tiny House Movement. In fact, Spur, the first town that opened its arms to tiny houses, is in Texas. So, if you’re planning to build a tiny house in Texas, you’re free to do as you wish. Other Texan towns like Austin, Fortworth, and Breckenridge are also welcoming to tiny house builders. 

What are Wisconsin’s tiny house laws?

While Texas is friendly to tiny houses, Wisconsin is the opposite. Besides having a few tiny house builders and many restrictions, the state also doesn’t have a clear definition of a tiny house. As of the moment, the state considers tiny homes as Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs). That means they don’t see tiny houses as legitimate living structures in which people can permanently live.

Why are tiny houses illegal in some states?

Why are tiny houses illegal in some states?

Living in a tiny house is the ultimate goal for many American families today. Yet, that aim might be a mountain to climb. Why? Well, some state governments have rendered tiny houses illegal in their residential zones.

Now, why are tiny houses illegal in some states? Tiny houses are not legal in several US states primarily because of their building codes. If a state doesn’t recognize a tiny house as a legitimate structure in its construction code, then it’s very likely that it’s illegal. Although, there are states that allow tiny houses—however, it comes with restrictions. 

We listed several reasons why tiny houses are legal in a few US states. 

Why are tiny houses illegal in some states?

Did you know that the demand for downsizing has been stronger than ever? People, especially young families, are exchanging their American dream houses for smaller, cuter, and energy-saving mobile abodes. 

Apparently, they have been realizing that all they need can fit in less than 400 square meters. And best of all, they can drive it anywhere they want to! That is why, despite the fluctuating costs and prices and minor legal obstacles, the tiny house movement is all the rage in the United States. 

Despite this huge exigency, some states still look down on tiny houses. Now, to answer the question “Why are tiny houses illegal in some states?”, here are the main issues. 

1. The state’s building code does not allow it.

house plans with a miniature house and pencils
Building codes vary by state in the U.S.

No national building code considers tiny houses as legitimate residential structures. States’ regulations, meanwhile, can vary; that’s why some states are more lenient with tiny houses and others are not.

As for those states that prohibit tiny houses, the reason is that their building code does not allow it. This might sound too much of an Occam’s razor, but it’s true. 

The state government might have refused to acknowledge the tiny houses’ practicality yet. It could also be that they lack the resources to validate the movement’s sustainability.

Although, if a community is passionate and relentless enough about advocating for tiny houses, that restriction might eventually loosen up. Connecticut, especially, is known to be very uptight with tiny houses—but they are apparently scouting for advocates for the movement.  

Some states also allow tiny houses but pose strict limitations. Other states such as Alabama, meanwhile, don’t also have a state-wide construction code. The sliver of hope, perhaps, is that the state is on its way of legalizing tiny houses. 

RELATED: The 7 Best States For Living In A Tiny House

2. HUD is against tiny houses. 

white tiny house on wheels.
Tiny house on wheels are considered RVs

There are two prominent kinds of tiny houses in the US: tiny houses with foundations and tiny houses on wheels. 

The federal government has always been stringent with the former. However, lately, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), a federal agency, has been proposing to outlaw tiny houses on wheels and RV living in general.

With this looming circumstance in the future, the increasing number of tiny houses, and some states’ dependence on the federal government aid, state governments might find it harder to legalize tiny houses. 

If that proposal takes flight, thousands of families and occupants will stop having their right to own and live in tiny houses. Ultimately, the tiny house movement will lose its legs.

3. Tiny houses are not easy to regulate.

Many licensed professionals and firms in North America build and offer tiny houses. These experts have years of construction experience behind them. 

Regardless of the manufacturers’ credibility and compliance, some states are still on the fence about tiny houses, particularly tiny house living. That’s because tiny homes are tricky to regulate when talking about zoning, security, and privacy. 

For a house to become a viable place in which one can permanently live, it must pass certain standards. Unfortunately, tiny house designs are not conventional enough to check all the boxes. 

This does not mean tiny houses are not safe abodes for living. They are not just equipped with the ideal specs for standard house living in America.

Particularly, tiny houses, despite being well-designed, will inevitably have ventilation challenges. Tiny houses have limited space, making indoor airflow high-maintenance. If a family is not savvy enough, it will add to their home-related expenses, considering they might add HVAC systems and dehumidifiers.

That safety issue alone is why some state governments find it hard to regulate, and ultimately, approve of tiny houses and tiny house living in general. 

4. To prevent greedy landowners from taking advantage. 

an abandoned shotgun house in New Orleans.
A shotgun-style house in New Orleans

Apparently, because of the demand for tiny houses, some greedy landowners in the US have taken advantage. 

For instance, some landowners in 2017 have built many rental shotgun houses in residential land, going beyond the required number of properties built in a land. 

Shotgun houses are tiny dwellings, with widths measuring less than 12 feet. Minorities, such as African-American families in Southern parts of the United States, mostly live in shotgun houses. 

Having more than the required number of houses in a residential zone brings many issues. Besides that it’s illegal, it will also compromise the quality of life of the residents in that area, especially the children’s. 

The danger doesn’t end there. According to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), housing has a significant impact on a child’s development. Along with constant moving, this inconsistency might cause a behavioral problem in the kid. 

5. They are strict with recreational vehicles (RVs). 

white RV with extended porch.
RVs have stringent regulations in some states as well.

Finally, some states are stringent with tiny houses because they are the same way with RVs and towing. 

Since tiny houses on wheels are considered RVs, the same strict rules also apply to them. Other RVs such as campers and travel trailers also fall under the same roof. 

We’ve mentioned here that states are likely to be less uptight with recreational vehicles. However, it’s the opposite for a few towns. The concern lies in the dwelling disengaging from the SUV or any car that hauls the tiny house.

Some states don’t also allow parking in some areas, but the aim is to make sure the occupants in the RV won’t be in harm. 

Therefore, if you’re planning to invest in a tiny house on wheels, it’s best if you check the enforced regulations for RVs in your town and neighboring cities. 

You should also study the required lane usage, trailer lights, parking rules, and even required safety items. Not only will studying those protect you from theft and accidents but will also save you from paying penalty fines. 

Final thoughts

There you have it. The next time someone asks you “Why are tiny houses illegal?”, you can share these five main issues.

It’s unfortunate that some money-hungry capitalists are taking advantage of the tiny house movement. Because of this, tiny houses are becoming not so tiny and even pricier. 

Nevertheless, there’s good news and bad news. 

The good news is that some states have become looser with their restrictions, making zoning laws beneficial to tiny house residents. The bad news, however, is that the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) might be out to get the tiny house movement. 

Related questions

How to start a tiny house community? 

First, you have to study your town’s zoning and construction codes regarding tiny houses. You need to find land in a residential zone. After that, you still have to deal with an endless barrage of legalities. Expect submitting requirements, meeting with town officials, and, of course, estimating how much everything would cost. 

Why are tiny houses on wheels? 

Most people choose to build a tiny house on wheels to exempt themselves from construction codes. Tiny houses on wheels have looser regulations since they are not defined as structures but as recreational vehicles (RV). Also, people who own these types of dwellings like to move around. They love the feeling of not having a permanent home. 

10 Unique Ideas for Your Tiny House Interior Designs

10 Unique Ideas for Your Tiny House Interior Designs

White tiny modern kitchen with red components, reconstruction, cosy small panel house
Designing interiors of your tiny house is challenging and fulfilling at the same time.

Who does not like the idea of making their home feel bigger than it actually does? Because really, in order to have an airier and lighter home, a bigger space is needed. But how will you achieve such a thing in your tiny house?

Thankfully, you can still beautifully arrange your tiny house without compromising style. Yes, you can achieve that amazingly beautiful interior with the limited space that you have. 

Interior Design Ideas

Designing the interiors of your tiny house could be a little challenging. But if you know exactly what you want, then it would be so easy for you. Here are some ideas to help you kickstart designing your tiny house.

1. Opt for an Accent Wall

At the very heart of almost all homes with amazing interior design is an anchor. Anchors could range from an accent wall to a statement piece of furniture. A good way to anchor how your tiny home is designed is through an exposed brick wall. 

You might be wondering how you could have an interior brick wall in your tiny home. Well, the brick wall does not necessarily have to be true. You might now know it, but you can actually fake exposed brick walls. 

How? Thin brick tiles and grout will do the trick. With these two materials, you can already give your tiny house a facelift. 

What more? You don’t have to hire contractors as well which means that you can see money out of it. Installing brick tiles on your walls is very easy and is very affordable too. Besides, you can install it yourself.

Alternatively, you can opt for stickers with a brick design. They look so real, you would not notice they are not real bricks.

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2. Shrink Your Furniture

Given the limited space that you have, purchasing a full set dining set is a big NO. Instead, you should only buy furniture that you actually need. 

When buying furniture sets for your tiny home, you should always opt for the ones that are compact and can be transformed or folded. In short, go for multifunctional furniture not just to save space but to save money as well. 

If your tiny house has a very limited dimension, your best option is to go for custom-built furniture. Custom-built furniture sets are more expensive but most of them serve different functions.

Also, your furniture sets do not necessarily have to match. Always feel free to mix and match them to come up with an eclectic feel. Doing so also saves space. 

Always remember that the more space you have saved in one corner, the more space you’ll have for other items in your tiny house.

How about adding this Haotian White Drop-Leaf Table Desk to your tiny home?

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TILEMALL Fold Out Wall Mounted Convertible Writing Floating Desk - White

3. Go Light and Bright

Dark colors are not suitable for small spaces. This is because dark colors make small spaces look even smaller. But this does not mean that you can’t go for the color scheme that you want for your tiny house. 

Your dream of having navy colors in your tiny house is still possible. Your best bet is to have your walls accented with single navy color. Then, keep the rest of your walls a tone lighter. 

To add more dark colors into your tiny house, add things like throw pillows and rugs with the color that you want. Just make sure that you are not overdoing it. Keep it to minimal only to have more space and for your tiny house to feel bigger.

For dark-colored throw pillows, we recommend MIULEE Velvet Soft Solid Decorative Square Throw.

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4. Always Think About Storage

Whether you are living a minimalist or not, you are surely going to need storage. Do not forget how important storage is even when your tiny house is still being built. More so when you are purchasing furniture and other items for your tiny house. 

So, how will you use the space that you have in your tiny house?

First, mount your television on the wall instead of using a television stand. Mounting it on the wall saves space which you can use to store books or magazines. You could also style the space to add more drama. Or, you can mount your television to your wall.

Second, get the most out of the stairs. If your tiny house has stairs, you could use the space under it as storage. The space under it is perfect for tall cabinets that can be rolled from one place to another. 

This customizable TomCare Cube Storage is perfect for filling the spaces underneath your stairs.

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The stairs itself could also be a storage. It could be used as a built-in drawer where you can store your stuff. You could have it made as a built-in drawer while your tiny house is still being built. 

Third, raise your bed frame high enough to store plastic tubs. If not plastic tubs have it made as a built-in cabinet where you can store your clothes. With this, you no longer have to use wall cabinets thus, you can use the space for other things. 

The very core of getting the most out of the limited space that you have is creativity. So, be as creative as you can when planning how you will use your tiny house space wisely.

5. Make the Most of Vertical Space

Are you into books and reading that you want to have your own library right at your tiny house? But the thing is, how will you make it happen given the limited space of your tiny house? Is that even possible?

Well, yes! Your dream of having a library in your tiny house could happen. You can both have a stylish house and a functional library all at once. 

Since your space is very limited, you have to make the most out of it. Making the most out of your very limited space means using all the wall space from the floor to the ceiling. You could use the floor to ceiling walls to create shelves where you can store your books. 

Take a look at this tall and beautiful Ameriwood Kendall Storage Cabinet.

Floor to ceiling bookshelves makes your tiny house look aesthetic. It also allows you to expand your library space. 

Your tiny house has a lot of vertical spaces. You just have to think of ways on how you could use these spaces well. Sometimes, a little creativity is all you need to maximize all the vertical spaces that you have.

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6. Pocket Doors Are Your Friend

You might be wondering why pocket doors are better when living in a tiny house when in fact, a regular door does not take up a lot of space. But when it comes to functionality, a door needs a wide berth. 

There are two possibilities when it comes to this. First, keeping the area clear which sacrifices your space. Second, keeping the door open which sacrifices your privacy. Are you willing to give up either of them?

If not, then your choice is to use pocket doors. Pocket doors give you more functional space in your tiny house since it directly slides into the walls. With pocket doors, you can both have the privacy and the space that you need.

Pocket doors are also safer when you have kids. 

7. Let Your Furniture Do Double Duty

When planning how you will set up your tiny house, you probably have considered the furniture that you will have. A table in the kitchen, a small desk for work, a bed in the room, a cozy couch in the living room, and so much more. If you could put all of these things into your tiny house, then congratulations to you!

If you don’t have plans to get a smaller version of the furniture pieces in your tiny house, then at least have them built for multiple uses. Buy a daybed which could also serve as a couch. Use the space under your couch for storage. 

Work at the kitchen table instead of having another desk for work. Use your staircase as storage by creating drawers beneath it. Do the same with your bed. 

Your tiny house is small but has enough space for you and all of your needs. Just be creative and selective.

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SimLife Metal Bed Frame Solid 6 Legs Two Headboards Mattress Foundation Steel Support No Box Spring...

8. Trick the Eye

There are a lot of decorating ideas that you could use to your advantage. These decorating ideas don’t just make your tiny house look aesthetic but it also makes it feel bigger. 

Placing a piece of art, like a painting, higher up on the walls draw the eyes upward. This creates an illusion that space is bigger or wider. Add this beautiful Modern Gallery Wall Decor Print White Flower piece to your tiny home.

As much as possible, keep all your spaces open. Keep the doors open to give an illusion that the entire space flows together. For floor-standing furniture, choose those that have legs.

If you can’t find one, add them on your own. Having furnishings with legs is much better than keeping them directly fitted on the floor. 

Having such a thing allows you to see the space under them every time. This also makes your tiny house appear bigger than it actually is. 

9. Add Mirrors

An age-old styling trick for making your home feel more spacious is by adding mirrors into your house. Mirrors never fail when it comes to making your tiny house feel bigger. 

Mirrors reflect light which tricks the eyes that the space that you have is bigger than it is. When a mirror is placed facing a window, it reflects the outdoors. This makes it appear that you have another window in the room. And, the more windows you have, the more that your tiny house will look bigger.

Here’s a beautiful decorative mirror for your home. Take a look at this Kate and Laurel Rhodes Modern Hexagon Wall Mirror.

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10. Have a Good Lighting

Good lighting is very important when it comes to tiny houses. This is because bad lighting makes small spaces appear even smaller. So, if the corners of your tiny house are dark and dingy due to the lack of lighting, then your tiny house will feel smaller. 

This is because the dark corners are cut off for being visible. This makes it important to make sure that every corner of your tiny house is well lit. You could do this by having concealed lighting fixtures on your cabinets and other furnishings. 

Since you do not have all the space that you need to stand lamps and tables, have your lights fixed on the walls. You could also have them hanging on the ceiling.

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Capulina Tiffany Floor Lamp Torchiere Shape 12" Width Stained Glass Mission Lampshade for Living...
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Dos and Don’ts When Decorating Your Tiny House

1. Do Scale-Up in a Tiny House

Less is more when it comes to decorating your tiny house. When it comes to tiny houses, having a single, larger statement item on display is more attractive than having several smaller pieces. 

This is because doing so keeps the area open and airy. It also lessens visual clutter to make your tiny house look bigger and more organized. 

Scaling up is recommended when living in a tiny house not just to save space but to keep clutter at a minimum level only as well. So, in as much as possible, practice scaling up to have more space for other things in your tiny house. 

2. Don’t Get Something Unless You Really Need It

At some point, we all have bought something that we don’t actually need. Admit it!

But once you are living in a tiny house, impulsive buying is no longer allowed. Not unless you want a cluttered tiny house. 

A philosophy that you should practice when living in a tiny house is “If you build it, fill it.” This means that you should only add things to your tiny house as needed. Do not build shelves or cabinets when you don’t actually need them. They will just want you to buy more which will make your space even more limited. 

3. Don’t Block the Few Windows

The air circulation in a tiny house is not the same as regular or traditional houses. So, blocking the heater or air conditioning unit is most probably the last thing that you want to do. 

With tiny homes, blocking the windows where air passes through is very easy. The furniture sets could easily do the job. 

So, if you have the budget, have your furniture custom built to make them work around the windows. This will also ensure that you are getting as much lighting as possible for your tiny house too.

4. Do Use a Lighter Color Palette

As mentioned above, dark colors make the room appear smaller. So, use lighter color palettes instead when painting and decorating your tiny house. 

Lighter colors make your tiny house appear bigger. It also makes it look cleaner and is more pleasing to see. You can always combine a few light colors and add one dark color if you wish. 

Just make sure that that dark color does not overcome a lighter color. If you an, just stick to lighter colors to avoid any issue. 

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Rubberseal Liquid Rubber Waterproofing and Protective Coating - Roll On White (1 Gallon, White)

5. Do Find Pieces That Pull Double Duty

Your space is limited, but it could still be stylish. How? Choose furniture and accessories that marry function and form. 

Do not make your eyes sore by adding accents such as shoe racks and filing cabinets. If organizational pieces are really needed, choose stylish items that serve multiple purposes. 

When it comes to living in a tiny house, in as much as possible, the items inside should be multifunctional. This is because your space is very limited to have every single thing inside.

Conclusion 

Designing the interiors of your tiny house isn’t as hard as it sounds. The limited space might be challenging but with just a little creativity, you would have it designed the way you want – functional and stylish. 

Always keep in mind that your space is very limited so you have to make the most out of it. Do not put things that are not necessary. In as much as possible, keep things simple and minimal. 

Related Questions

Can I have full-sized furniture in my tiny house?

Yes, you can as long as the furniture is multifunctional. Putting furniture in your tiny house that is not multifunctional is not economic and is not space-wise. So, go for pieces that serve multiple purposes or if not, go for pieces that are compact and can be folded. 

What color is more ideal for tiny houses?

Lighter shades are more ideal for tiny houses. This is because lighter shades make tiny houses appear bigger. Ideally, you should paint your tiny house white or cream. When it comes to the furnishings, you could choose other lighter colors. You could also have dark colors. Just make sure that the darker colors are minimal only

Tiny Home Living: The Hidden Costs

Tiny Home Living: The Hidden Costs

Sure, the concept of tiny home living is attractive. For some, it’s their long-time dream. But what about the hidden costs of tiny home living? 

At a glance, you might spend more if you add upgrades, if you need external storage, or even if you raise a little kid. You also have to face zoning regulations. 

And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. 

That is why we listed these potential hidden costs. We are not aiming to discourage you from tiny home living; we just want to warn you of the possible financial roadblocks ahead. 

Hidden costs of tiny home living

1. Upgrades

The one benefit of owning a tiny house is saving on home expenses, compared to having a regular size dwelling. 

For example, tiny house residents in Orlando only spend less than $1000 every month for their home-related expenses. Meanwhile, according to Pocket Sense, the average American family of 2 spends $5,005 per month to maintain their lifestyle. 

Living in a tiny house, you can definitely save more disposable income. 

However, whether it’s necessary or not, you will eventually have to pay for house upgrades if you live in a tiny house. These particular hidden costs of tiny home living will even be more likely with a tiny house on wheels.

Such, inevitably, those upgrades will pile up on your monthly home expenses. 

Several of those installations might be a newer (or better) HVAC system, a solar panel, or an alarm device. Other maintenance and towing necessities will also add up more quickly to your home-related budget.

So, you have to watch out for that. 

Tiny Homes: What Is the True Cost of Living Small? 

2. External storage

Being in a restricted space, one of the most obvious concerns you might deal with is storage.

Sure, you can find plenty of storage-saving hacks online and they are easy to follow. However, eventually, your stuff will multiply—especially if you’re living with a kid. 

You can’t forever rely on storage containers because you need space for them to occupy. As a result, some tiny house residents have even used their lofts as storage space. 

The consequences? Dust and poor indoor airflow. 

So, what happens when you already filled every nook and cranny in your house with things? Well, you might now have to spend on additional outdoor storage.

 The average fee for renting a storage unit is $40 to $50, and that’s just a 5×5 unit. The price will vary based on the size of the facility and unit and its location.

Urban places, of course, have higher annual and monthly fees. 

3. Your town’s zoning laws 

This is one of the more complicated and potentially expensive hidden costs of tiny home living—dealing with your town’s zoning codes. 

Zoning laws are important because they help residents live peacefully without the commercial hustle and bustle from businesses that disturb neighborhoods. Similarly, zoning laws also protect businesses from trespassing residents in an area. 

You’re lucky if you live in a state that is relaxed about the Tiny House Movement; however, if you don’t, you might have to adjust and pay for fees. Moreover, if you violate a zoning code in your state, the consequences might be brutal. 

It is even more challenging, considering residential zone areas are not that many these days. So, if you want to build a tiny house in a non-residential land, then you might have to request for a zone change. This involves an application, a payment, which depends on the locality, and a hearing with the zoning board. 

On top of that, your tiny house has to pass building code compliance. But to do that, you have to be a certified tiny house manufacturer, which will cost you more than a thousand dollars and requires submitting a dozen qualifications. 

Meanwhile, you can expect looser zoning codes if your house is on wheels, which is considered a recreational vehicle (RV). 

And, if your town isn’t that friendly with tiny houses, you can also advocate for the changing of its zoning laws

4. The appliances 

Haven’t bought a tiny house yet? Well, prepare an allowance for appliances, because customized equipment for tiny houses can cost more.  

Sure, you can find some fully furnished prefab tiny houses; however, one size doesn’t fit all, right? Your family might have specific needs the prefab can’t provide. Moreover, your needs might change over time. 

For example, if you have a tiny house on wheels, you might have to spend on a compact heater if you’re commuting to colder places like Wyoming or Vermont.

Additionally, you might have to spend on battery or solar panels for your other off-the-grid appliances.

One thing you should also consider, besides the cost of your appliances, is the hidden price you’re paying for your appliances. 

Some cheap appliances might be noisier than their expensive competitors. For example, be wary of the noise that some “eco-toilets”, Roombas, and water pumps make.

Knowing you’re in a tiny house, where sound can quickly travel, this will be a hassle. So, when buying appliances, you have to think about that as well. 

5. Insurance

yellow tiny house on wheels

In the past, insurance has not been kind to tiny house owners. Tiny houses that are towed by an SUV or a truck, which are considered RVs, are not even covered by traditional homeowners’ insurance. 

The good news is that insurance options for tiny houses are slowly increasing. Still, it greatly depends on the location and their laws about tiny houses. So, if you’re living in a state that acknowledges their existence with fair regulations, then you’re fortunate. 

Tiny houses on foundations and tiny houses on wheels have different insurance policies. Interestingly, the cost doesn’t stray far away from a traditional regular size house.

According to the Home Insurance Learning Center, a tiny house’s annual insurance can cost up to $1,500. Factors such as the house’s materials, location, and level of difficulty to repair will also affect that amount. 

6. Your tolerance and patience 

Finally, the often-overlooked ones—you will probably lose a lot of patience and tolerance in your tiny home living. 

From your buying/building journey to your living stage, you will deal with different personalities, trials, setbacks, and more. It’s totally normal to go through those, but you can avoid those by studying what you’re heading to. 

If you’re hiring a contractor, make sure they understand your journey. Not only do they have to be skilled and fast with the deliverables, but they should also empathize with your woes as well. 

Fortunately, with everything going digital right now, it’s easy to scrape the web for a tiny house supplier’s reputation. Get to know them through tiny house owners’ forums on Facebook, Reddit, etc. 

Conclusion 

As you can see, every dream has prices—and that includes the hidden costs of tiny home living. That is why before you rush to buy your dream tiny house, take a few steps back and plan properly.

Never forget to save up for an allowance for these hidden expenses in your tiny home journey. 

Related questions

How much does it cost to build a tiny house in California?

The starting cost of a tiny house in California is $40,000. Depending on many factors such as location, materials, and zoning codes, it can cost you more than $100,000.

How do you build a tiny house?

It all depends on your construction experience, budget, and personal preferences. You can either buy a blueprint from a tiny house provider and then build it yourself. Or, you can also order prefab tiny houses and the supplier will ship it to your location. Check out our blog post about tiny house marketplaces to know more.

Where to buy your very own tiny house?

Where to buy your very own tiny house?

Where to buy your very own tiny house

Finding a cute house these days is not so difficult. Your real challenges, however, are going through the legalities and making sure it truly fits your lifestyle and needs.

It’s even more complicated when you have a kid.  

So, where can you actually buy your very own tiny house? Here’s the simple answer. You can find plenty of real estate marketplaces online that let you pay for tiny houses. They will then ship it to your location. You can also check out Amazon for prefab tiny houses and blueprints, and then build it yourself.

Want something more? We got you. Below, we listed sites that offer tiny houses, floorplans, and other options. 

Where to buy your very own tiny house

1. Tiny House Listings

interior view of tiny house by Tiny House Listings
Custom 24X8 Tiny House on Wheels – Tiny House Listings

You may have joined the bandwagon by looking for tiny houses; however, that doesn’t mean you have to get similarly designed abodes as well. Good thing an online marketplace such as Tiny House Listings exists. 

As mentioned in their landing page, Tiny House Listings has plenty of interesting and unique house designs to offer.

We checked out their Browse section and they have a pretty diverse array of tiny house designs—from trailer-style houses to minimalist ones. 

People can also post their designs on the site and sell them. So, whether you’re planning to rent, sell, or actually buy one, you can do all of those on THL. 

Meanwhile, if you’re ready to move into a tiny house but your pocket isn’t, you can also opt for their financing. THL has worked with Even Financial to let online buyers apply for up to $100,000-worth of loans on their website. 

Even Financial is an Application Programming Interface (API) for financing mobile applications, so if you’re really serious about applying for a loan, you can do it for free and hassle-free on the site of Tiny House Listings.

Site: tinyhouselistings.com/

2. Amazon 

Although your search won’t be as laser-focus on Amazon compared to others, it’s still a viable option if you’re still looking around. But in all honesty, it has a meh quality to it, but you can still give it a try. 

A search on Google about “Amazon tiny houses” will lead you to this page entitled Tiny Homes: Amazon. On the page, you will find a random mix of unavailable prefab products, very few prefab houses, and documentaries. 

So, instead of browsing further on that page, we suggest you type “tiny houses” at the search bar on the top and then hit enter. Amazon will then lead you to a list of prefab tiny houses.

Although, it will still suggest documentaries about small houses (which is not surprising but still weird). 

Site:  amazon.com/tiny-house/s?k=tiny+house 

3. New Frontier Tiny Homes 

isolated wooden house in the woods
Live Intentionally – New Frontier Tiny Homes

Want a rustic tiny house where you can write in peace, hang out with your friends, or relax with your significant other for a weekend? NFTH might just have something perfect for you. 

On their landing page, you can instantly see a list of beautiful, quaint rustic tiny houses. Made of wood and steel, their small size only accentuates the peaceful vibe they give. 

Those beautiful houses have names, too. Alpha, Escher, Cornelia, and Orchid—and they all have unique designs that cater to a particular buyer’s preference. Cornelia, for example, is designed for writers who want to finally finish their great American novel.

While they don’t offer to finance, they have suggested personal or construction loans from lenders like LightStream, SoFi, and Prosper. 

Site: New Frontier Tiny Homes

4. Tiny Heirloom 

If you want a more flexible approach to building your own tiny home, you might like Tiny Heirloom. While they are also offering prefab designs like the others, interestingly, you can also customize pretty much everything. 

On their site, you can see browse their Signature Series, which consists of five luxury pre-designed tiny houses. They also offer custom tiny houses and even preowned tiny houses. 

Besides that, they also offer construction services to B2B businesses. Apparently, they can build food trucks, mobile showrooms, and show booths for enterprises. 

As for financing, they are offering loan applications in all 50 states in the United States. You can apply for a loan right on their site. They also suggest you go to LightStream if you want other loan options. 

Site: Tiny Heirloom

5. Wheelhaus

Tiny House in the woods - Wheelhaus
Tiny House in the woods – Wheelhaus

In our previous post about tiny house kits, we mentioned Wheelhouse being a good source of prefab tiny houses. Now, we’re expanding that here. 

The unique thing about Wheelhaus is that they deliver turnkey tiny houses right at your doorstep. With a background in log cabin construction, Wheelhaus boasts a combination of rustic and modern in their models.

They have a variety of models on wheels or on foundation, but their speciality is building less than 400 square feet Recreational Park Trailers (RPTs) and Rolling Cabins. 

Interior view of a tiny house model from Wheelhaus
Interior view of a tiny house model from Wheelhaus

Now, before you can choose any model from Wheelhaus, you have to undergo an initial consultation. Only then you can pick your most desired model that suits your budget. 

And if you want to get a loan, you can sign up at their Lightstream-backed financing program on their site, which allows up to $100,000 financing. 

Site: Wheelhaus | Tiny houses 

6. 84 Lumber

84 Lumber doesn’t have a diverse range of designs, but you can see their kind of brand on their models. In both of their on-wheels and foundation series, you can see the signature wooden, colorful panel design. 

On their site, you can see each model’s floor plan, which will really help if you’re living with young kids. This way, you can determine what needs adjustments, should you want to buy your very own tiny house with your kids.

They also offer designs with blueprints only, which costs $500; meanwhile, the blueprints plus trailer will cost you less than $7,000. 

Moreover, although it’s not that easy to find on their site, they also offer to finance. Just like the others, they have also partnered with Lightstream to offer housing loans to their clients. 

Site: 84tinyliving.com

7. Escape Traveler

Gorgeous tiny house on wheels from Escape Traveler

Escape Traveler is a suitable marketplace for people who are always on the move. 

Besides their financing, the variety of their designs is also notable. They were even featured on Forbes Magazine’s “The Most Beautiful Tiny Houses In The World“. 

Similar to the previous marketplaces on this list, they also deliver prefab homes with their own fleet company and leveling systems. You can also order their models anywhere in the US. 

If you like modular homes on wheels, they are offering discounts if you choose premium designs. Each model can cost more than $30,000 $60,000, but if you pick the premium plans, they can give you more than $3,000 to $5,000 discounts. 

In case you want financing to buy your very own tiny house, you have to send them a quote, first. 

Site: escapetraveler.net/

8. MODS International 

Modular On-Demand Structures (MODS) International specializes in building tiny homes using shipping containers all over the world. That means their services also extend to commercial, temporary shelters, and trade shows. 

HGTV also featured multiple of their container homes. In the show “Container Homes’’, MODS built a residential project for a family in Wisconsin. 

Besides container homes, they also built some unique structures. Several notable ones are bunkhouses, man camps, and workforce housing.

They even built a Grow Container System, which is also known as “farm in a box”, where you can grow and produce hydroponic plants. It’s also available on Amazon. 

MODS is also a full-service firm, which means they cover everything, from the designing of the house to the delivery to the owner. 

Site: mods.us

9. Jamaica Cottage Shop

A cute cottage for rent with white walls and yellow green and pink doors. Jamaica Cottage Shop.
A cute cottage for rent

Last but definitely not least is JCS, which is a no-nonsense supplier of tiny house prefabs and kits. 

Their edges against other sellers, apparently, are their free shipping costs in the US and Canada, customizations, and overtime payments. 

Particularly, they have partnered with a lender called getbread.com, which allowed them to offer low rates to their customers. 

Don’t like going DIY? Their fully assembled tiny houses can cost you more than $50,000, depending on the size and design. 

Meanwhile, the other tiny structures they build are tool sheds, potting forts, and garden sheds. They also construct cabins, garages, barns, and storage units. 

Site: jamaicacottageshop.com/

Conclusion

With the plethora of real estate marketplaces, choosing where to buy your very own tiny house may overwhelm you. 

Nevertheless, just don’t lose sight of what you have really envisioned—the best life you want to live—and you can make less lame buying decisions. 

Also, don’t forget to make sure you can legally own it in your state. 

Related questions

Which states allow tiny houses? 

In the US, you can build or buy tiny houses in Arizona, California, Colorado, Indian, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, and Texas. 

How much do tiny houses cost? 

The average cost of a tiny home can be $30,000 to $40,000. Usually, it can become more expensive (up to $180,000) as you add upgrades like an HVAC system. 

Raising a Kid in a Tiny House: Yeah or Nah?

Raising a Kid in a Tiny House: Yeah or Nah?

Have you been thinking about raising a kid in a tiny house? This decision is way major than you think. 

Why? Well, you have to think about your finances, your furniture, and even the ethics behind the act itself… Is it even humane to raise a little kid in a tiny house? For a penny-pinching parent, this can be puzzling.

So, raising a kid in a tiny house: yeah or nah? If you’re willing to compromise with the challenges and growing pains along the way, then it might be just worth it. If you’re not in the right place or financial situation to raise a kid in a restricted space, then we don’t recommend it. 

If you’re still on the fence about making a solid decision, don’t worry. In this post, we listed the important considerations of raising a kid in a tiny house. 

By the end of this post, perhaps you can decide better if it’s worth it or not. 

Raising a kid in a tiny house: Things to consider

We’re not talking about a little baby here. We’re talking about a kid who already pitter-patters around the house, mouths words, and demands toys. Therefore, you should be anything but rash in deciding to raise them in a little house. 

A lot of things can happen, most of which you won’t even anticipate. So, before you jump on the bandwagon, carefully mull over these factors first. 

1. The ethics of the act itself

a kid playing with wooden blocks.
Is it right to raise a kid in a tiny house?

Raising a child is both rewarding and challenging. The sad thing is most parents rarely feel the former. 

Now, if you’re stuck in making a decision that involves them, just think about this: it’s about your kid, not you. 

It’s not enough to love a child. You also have to meet their needs, which will be drastically different than yours. Moreover, since they will depend on you, you have to put your interests behind theirs. 

These are your kids’ early childhood needs that you should fulfill, which is based on Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs

Basic needs. 

a little boy playing with a fat cat.
Make sure your little one is comfy in a cramped space.

Anything that they need to live and breathe—adequate food, shelter, and clothing. Make sure you can supply those needs for them, despite living in a tiny house or moving around constantly. 

Comfort needs.

We’re not just talking about a soft bed or a sturdy study table for them. Comfort needs are also things that maintain consistency, such as a routine. Having one will help make your child feel secure. 

Psychological needs. 

According to childcare experts, toddlers’ psychological needs develop quickly. That’s why you need to establish a healthy relationship with them early on. If you think a tiny house is not a hindrance to sustaining that, then carry on. 

Are you absolutely confident that you can provide those needs in a tiny house? If yes, then maybe you can move forward with your decision. 

2. Your finances

a little girl choosing dresses in a rack of clothes.
Kids’ needs can quickly change.

One thought that might be floating in your mind is: 

The purpose of living in a tiny house is to save money… so, why worry about my finances for my kids?” 

Oh, what a naive thought. 

Sure, compared to living in a larger house, you can save more money in utility bills when residing in a small abode. However, it’s different when you’re raising a kid. 

You have to budget even tighter since they grow quickly, which means their needs will also multiply. Case in point: a 2-year-old will have way simpler needs than a 3-year-old who’s going to preschool. 

Add that to the hidden costs of owning a tiny house, and your budget plan will likely fluctuate from time to time. This makes budgeting a battle. 

Moreover, since space is limited in your home, you have to practice a “quality over quantity” mindset. That means you will really have to spend on long-lasting, space-saving stuff, which sometimes costs more than regular house stuff. 

3. The furniture

kids' furniture in a bedroom.
You have to be extra picky with your kids’ furniture.

When you think of furniture pieces in a tiny house, you want comfortable and space-saving. But you’re missing some aspects. 

Since you will be living with a kid, opt for furniture with kid-friendly materials. That means water-proof, sturdy components, and dark-hued fabrics since spillage is likely to happen. 

Some kid-friendly fabrics are the following: 

  • Leather, which is very much water-proof but also elegant. 
  • Microfiber, which is stain-resistant and feels nice to the skin. 
  • Wool, which is reliable and doesn’t tear easily. 

Another good point to consider is the design and function. 

Having kids (or even just one), you will definitely need more storage. You will also require something with more than one purpose. This way, you can avoid spending on more equipment, which will occupy more space. 

As a result, look for dual-purpose furniture for kids such as:

(Note, we’ve added some recommendations on each item, make sure to check the links to see our product recommendations).

4. Privacy

a mom trying to work on her laptop but exhausted by the presence of her kid.

Your child should run free and play, just like how every other kid should. But if you are residents in a tiny house, this might become a challenge for both of you. 

Your kid might easily bother you since there’s little space for them to explore inside your house. On the other hand, a child also needs some alone time every now and then. 

So, what will you do? Here are some solutions. 

First, set some rules.

 If your kid is already old enough to recognize rules and consequences, then don’t hesitate to establish a few. For example, if you work at home, make it a rule not to run around inside during the day. 

Buy noise-canceling headphones. 

Another solution is to buy a noise-canceling headphone. Yep. It’s as easy as that. Think of it as an investment—noise-canceling headphones will give you peace wherever you are and whatever happens around you.  

Put the playspace at the loft. 

Just lay down some colorful mats, comfy blankets, and toy bins, and you’re good to go. You can also put a safety gate on the stairs if they try to break out of baby jail time. 

Let them play outside.

If you’re confident about the safety of your area, then let them run free. Besides, kids need to explore and play with dirt occasionally, so their immune system will toughen up

5. The kid

a working mom dressing up her kid
Think about your kid, too.

Finally, the most crucial consideration of them all… the kids! 

If your kid is already old enough to voice out their opinions, they might be against living in a tiny house. 

Although you still have the final say, it’s important that you still consider their personality and their thoughts about it. What if they’re extroverted or claustrophobic? What if they don’t just feel living in a tiny abode? 

Making a decision will be extra difficult for you. 

Nevertheless, don’t forget to put them in your thoughts when deciding. Through this, you will also determine how to make a small residence more welcoming for them and more productive for their growth.

The Verdict

And the verdict is… totally up to you. 

Are you willing to compromise in most of those factors we mentioned? If yes, then you should raise your kid in a tiny house. If you’re not committed to making big changes, then it’s best if you delay in raising a kid in a tiny house.

Related Questions 

Is it okay to live in a tiny house with a baby?

Yes, provided that you prepare the tiny house before you move in. Make sure there’s ample storage for the baby’s nappies, clothes, cleaning products, etc. You also have to babyproof the stairs if you have a loft. Check out our post about living in a tiny house with a baby for more tips.

How do you protect your privacy in a tiny house?

If your house is on wheels, buy a good hitch lock or a wheel lock. You can also attach a GPS tracker in a hidden place. If it’s secured by a foundation, then you can install a home security system. For a tiny house, a simple alarm device for your door can already help.