I know that tiny houses aren’t for everyone but a smaller living space can help you if you’re tired of carrying around all of that extra baggage that some of us have accumulated over the years.

Downsizing forces you to get rid of stuff so that you don’t have to end up working your tail off maintaining an over-sized home and paying for the lifestyle that goes along with that.

My question is,

“why can’t we live on land as simply as a one would aboard a sailboat?”

tiny house living in a sailboat   Crazy People in Tiny Houses

Two couples that are doing it


Andrew and Crystal Odom blog at the Tiny Revolution. They have solid plans to build and live in their own tiny Tumbleweed House.

Tammy and Logan blog at RowdyKittens. They also have plans to build and live in their own tiny house.

Would something like this surprise your family? My mom has raised one eyebrow when I’ve told her about my ideas.

Is it really all that crazy? NO, and here’s why

1 – You can design the space to meet your needs and nothing more. Everything you use is there and easy to find and get to.

2 – People that live happily in small spaces extend their living space outside with a patio, deck or even just an umbrella, table and chairs.

3 – The world is your backyard. Get out of the house and use restaurants, parks, libraries, book stores, coffee shops, gyms, and community centers on a daily basis. Who are your neighbors?

What’s holding us back

The idea of living so simply is only crazy because the government and large corporate interest have made it almost impossible to do.

So what can we do about it? How can we find more creative ways to bypass laws and take advantage of loopholes?

Do you think we should aim to get the laws changed or find unique ways to work around them legally? Like tiny house RV resorts, an educational campus with tiny houses as dorms, or even an unused building that’s converted to dozens of affordable studios.

I’d love to read about your thoughts and ideas in the comments. You can also help me spread the word by sharing this article with your friends on Facebook, Twitter or StumbleUpon.

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Alex

Alex has been living in small spaces for more than 7 years, he's the founding editor of TinyHouseTalk.com and the always free Tiny House Newsletter, and has passion for exploring and sharing tiny homes (from yurts and RVs to cabins and cottages) and inspiring simple living stories. Send in your story and tiny home photos so we can share and inspire others towards simplicity too. Thank you!

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{ 6 comments }

  • Gregortheinventor

    Hey sounds like you’ve been reading up on this sort of thing. That’s great! I don’t like the way things are any more than you do (probably hate it more even, since I actually would be using a tinyhouse right now if the legal/political issues were not such a problem). But the more people understand the easier it is to move on to the hard part of working these issues out.

    I have a post with my current position on the issue (though I may change it any time as I learn more) :
    http://towardsabettertinyhouse.wordpress.com/2011/03/06/if-we-are-not-going-to-think-about-it-we-could-at-least-ask-ourselves-why-we-are-not-thinking-about-it/

    Unfortunately it seems like all political change in the past has required at least a small group of people who can spend a substantial fraction of their time on organizing everyone else. That doesn’t exist yet for tinyhouses although you’d think it would with the Small house society founders etc. I wish I could start doing it, but I really factually can’t right now.

    Unfortunately, looking at examples of people who are currently living in tinyhouses, finding loopholes is not nearly as easy or as rosy an option as is sometimes portrayed. Use the search function on my blog for “examples of people living in tinyhouses”.

    That doesn’t mean I’m trying to “be negative”. But to solve the problem, it sure does help to understand it accurately.

    I keep meaning to write a post with a bunch of links so newcomers can easily and quickly get up to speed on the politics.

    Reply
  • deborah

    I think it is a multi-dimensional problem. For instance, smaller homes would mean smaller property taxes for the cities/towns. Home builders would not be able to make big profits on tiny homes as they do the McMansions. People with children today don’t seem to want to spend time with these “little creatures” and want them in sequestered in another part of the house out of earshot.

    Those seem to be the big three in my thinking but I’m sure others can add to this list.

    Reply
  • Roxy

    Call me crazy, but I’ve been living in a tiny house (288 sq ft) for 3 years and lovin’ every minute of it!
    When I got rid of so much ‘stuff’ I’d accumulated over the years, I felt like a huge weight had been lifted that I never knew was there!
    Happy, happy, in my tiny house on my wooded acre of heaven!

    Reply
  • Alex

    That’s awesome Roxy thanks for commenting. 288 sq ft sounds nice.

    Reply
  • di

    Zoning, finance and insurance for tiny homes:

    Is there a governmental site that deals with these specific issues?

    Reply
  • jerryd

    Great answers above!!

    Another reason is tiny homes are looked down on as low rent/poor by most as that is what is banged into their heads that bigger is better even if you never use it!!

    So it’s this as much as all the other problems. I have the same problem with my 3wh EV cars most dismiss 3wh ones without realizing just how good in so many ways they are like 500mpg equivalent. But with 2 front wheels they can beat the best sportscars in handling.

    And as I’m building my 34′ trimaran sailboat, I do such and building EV’s for a living and have lived aboard for 25 yrs before, I have to agree that boats are great tiny homes many designed to take you anywhere in the world for very little money.

    A great way is building a houseboat that mostly lives on a trailer giving many more places to live in it that a trailer TH.

    As far as crazy people in tiny houses it’s those that are different/crazy that make most of the advances as normal people just want to get along too scared to buck the herd.

    Personally I can’t stand being normal ;^P It costs too much, too much work and not enough fun. I’d rather spend, work less and travel, party more!!

    Reply

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