Tiny Homes


The tiny house movement is an interesting phenomenon that's sweeping the nation and yes, that includes the Treasure Valley. Beginning in Portland and spreading like wildfire, tiny houses have many different layouts and set-ups. Some homes are tiny with the express purpose of being mobile, while others are stationary and compact. Simplifying and downsizing seem to be a great idea as our world and lives get busier and busier, so many people have turned to their homes in a hope of reminding themselves of what matters most. Looking up pictures and videos of tiny homes can be inspiring to the person who is interested in de-cluttering their living space. If this sounds like you, or if you are just curious about how people live in and organize tiny homes, read on.

There are many different definitions of tiny homes. While some folks living "the tiny life" consider a home under 800 square feet to be a tiny home, most everyone else agrees that tiny homes are under 400 square feet and would be considered micro homes if the square footage falls under 200. That may seem small and cramped, but it's amazing what a bit of organization and willingness to downsize and simplify your belongings.

Living in a tiny home that is cute and compact is not the only draw that brings many people to the decision of living in a one, it's an entire lifestyle change and mindset that brings people to a love of living in simplicity. Plus, there are many financial perks that can come from moving into a smaller space. Upfront, the cost of building a tiny home may seem high, but if you do it yourself, the cost can be on average around $23,000. That number changes based on where you are building your home, how large you are building your home, and what sorts of places you go to get compact cabinetry, plumbing, and other such amenities. It also depends on how building permits, making sure your home is to code, and whether you are looking to purchase land and how much you need or want.

Tiny homes are unique in their location. Due to some zoning laws, etc. it is important to find land that will allow for a tiny home to be built. Other homes are located out in the country, but most often- tiny houses can be found in what are considered villages. This is largely due to the "tiny life" and how instrumental the culture is about opening yourself up to things that you normally wouldn't think about in a fully stocked, large home. Simplification isn't just a matter of clearing your home of everything that's not absolutely essential, it also spills over into your life, allowing you to feel free to chase your dreams, meet your neighbors, and place a higher value on things that aren't material. Often, folks who live in these tiny communities become quite closely knit. Though villages are the route that's most frequently taken to build a tiny home, there are still many scattered throughout regular neighborhoods.

Some of these small abodes already exist in Boise. Having been built as early as the 1900s, each of these homes has a very interesting history. As the saying goes - "if walls could talk", these walls would sing praises about being the first home of a newlywed couple, others would talk about the proud purpose that they held to house a family of the working class- not boasting about the fancy frills, but rather about the simple stability and shelter they provided. These little beauties have lit the spark that grows into a great desire to build more tiny homes- even for others less fortunate. There is a group that travels around the valley building tiny homes, probably more accurately termed as micro homes, for homeless people. The idea behind it is to provide a shelter from the elements, a bed to sleep in, and a door with a lock to help them feel more safe and secure. Some of the people who have moved into these micro homes see them as a life saver because they couldn't find other apartments. One veteran is blessed to have one of these and commented that he wasn't ever able to be in an apartment setting due to having issues living with other people and he couldn't afford the payments to live in an apartment on his own. This is just another cool way that tiny homes are benefitting society.

With so many cool things to learn about the tiny homes movement, it is important to hear the perks that you would gain by building a tiny home for yourself. Many people are nervous about feeling cramped, but it doesn't have to feel small. A proper layout and organizational skills are essential for a good flow and to maximize the amount of space in the home. In the same vein of organization, cleaning a small house is incredibly quick because there's less space for catching dust, etc. One woman estimated it takes her about a two hours to clean her entire house. Another cool thing to realize is that utility bills are not as high because there is less space to heat in the winter and cool in the summer.

Some researchers have done studies regarding tiny homes and their impact on health. It turns out, there can be benefits to living in one of these compact spaces- having windows in your tiny home brings in more light, requiring less artificial light and allowing for more fresh air (with the windows open). Most tiny home designs are conducive to these findings and focus on more energy efficient appliances, faucets, etc. Finally, living in a tiny home often gives the perception to others that it's an upper-middle class property, even though it is entirely possible to build a tiny home with much less money spent than would be spent on a larger home.

If you are looking to downsize your home and upgrade your life, tiny living may the answer for you. These spaces are incredibly versatile making it possible to achieve exactly your needs to help you get the most out of your home and your life.