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He Built a Tiny House Community for the Homeless

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I’ve been covering tiny houses and other smaller and alternative types of housing for the last few years and I can say that it’s easy to find great examples of small homes every day.

What bothers me is that the majority of what I find is the opposite of affordable housing. It’s normally boutique hotels, places to go “glamping”, and/or expensive real estate in highly populated areas.

And there’s absolutely nothing wrong with any of that. I think it’s great that there are all of these ways that people who aren’t in need can explore and discover housing that might one day make their lives better through simplicity.

And all of this helps lead to making our world better (environmentally, socially and economically). But now, more than ever, there seems to be a dire need for truly affordable and smarter housing. And in this area of Austin, Texas, one man is leading the way to accomplishing that right now.

The goal? To help get 200 people back on their feet and out of homelessness.

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Introducing: Community First Village

Tiny House Community for Homeless

Image Credit: Joy Diaz for KUT

It’s a 29 acre property with tiny cottages, teepees, and travel trailers completely dedicated to serving 200 local people who are chronically homeless.

“Allan Graham is the man behind the vision. A former businessman, he took it upon himself to change the life of Austin’s homeless population.”

Listen to the Audio Version of this Story Right Here Below

Learn more about this tiny house community for the homeless below:

Please read the original article over at KUT (part of the NPR network)

I’d like to thank Michael over at Tiny House Living for getting this story out there first.

What ideas do you have on how we can inspire more projects like this in our country and throughout the world?

Please share your thoughts in the comments below. Who knows, you might inspire the beginning of the next affordable small housing community! Do your part with a “Like”, share or comment below.

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Alex is a contributor and editor for TinyHouseTalk.com and the always free Tiny House Newsletter. He has a passion for exploring and sharing tiny homes (from yurts and RVs to tiny cabins and cottages) and inspiring simple living stories. We invite you to send in your story and tiny home photos too so we can re-share and inspire others towards a simple life too. Thank you!
{ 66 comments… add one }
  • Otessa Regina Compton
    November 13, 2013, 11:05 am


    • Alex Pino
      November 14, 2013, 10:09 am

      Thanks Otessa, I agree

    • maxine lawrie
      September 11, 2021, 2:19 am

      I would like to know more details please this is a growing problem and we need to help people who need guidance with living a better life .Like to know how he started to get funding and approval from council.
      cheers maxine in Australia

    • Kathleen
      June 30, 2022, 11:12 am

      Wow.. This man is an amazing soul. If we had more of this in our world we wouldn’t struggle & be homeless.. I’m getting worried with inflation now.. Rent went up. If I had a Van I could live in it but only have a Nissan Car it’s small & tried for a Van couldn’t get one. I have my dog otherwise I could do it. I pray something happens soon!

  • LaMar
    November 13, 2013, 11:28 am

    Do you have any contact info for the project Alex ?

    I have thought about doing something similar here and wold like to see how he got through legal hoops.


    • Alex Pino
      November 14, 2013, 10:09 am

      Hey LaMar, I don’t have his contact info but when I Googled him I found a few other charities, etc that he’s involved with and possibly runs where you might be able to reach him.

    • vicki dischner
      September 25, 2015, 7:43 pm

      I would like to do something here in Iowa but would like to talk with someone is that possible

  • Elizabeth
    November 13, 2013, 11:57 am

    I would like to get plans to build a teardrop trailer????????,

    • william Abraham
      March 21, 2014, 11:21 am

      Speedy Bill has the plans in his catalog.

  • Henry Armetta
    November 13, 2013, 12:45 pm

    I applaud efforts like these. The person who said it is all about ZONING is correct. Many zoning ordinances require minimum square footage for a living unit, minimum lot size, and other such requirements to restrict and eliminate mobile homes, alternative housing or affordable housing. Then they add infrastructure requirements that make development mega-expensive. Streets with curbs, gutters, street lights, and so on can add great expense. All have their place. Even when the property is zoned they can call you a PUD (planned unit development) adding more restrictions, requirements, and expense. Water and sewer have to be addresses — all to government standards. The issue become you want a foot-path, they require a highway. You have to do your homework, but more important is see if you can get the community to want the concept.

    • Alex Pino
      November 14, 2013, 10:10 am

      We need more ideas on how to overcome these challenges

      • Papi
        February 20, 2014, 8:30 pm

        Get people to quit voting in a*holes

        • George
          March 15, 2014, 3:44 pm

          Now, Papi, you have struck the nail on the head! Some people talk liberality, even espouse “anything goes” as long as it makes you happy, then vote in uber-conservative government officials who want to plan every aspect of your life. Of course, the elites say they are “non-judgemental” but that only applies to themselves. Personally, I’m sick of their hypocrisy. Just leave people alone to follow their own dreams. Enough with the ordinances, BOCA codes, and overseer mentalities! Less government is better government.
          But, there will still be people who defend city requirements, police, and other apparatus…just in case there’s someone who gets out of line. Fie on you, liberals. You have brought nothing but silliness and degradation to a society that once was truly free.

        • william
          April 29, 2014, 6:43 pm

          I am one of those Republicans which think small. And no I don’t have to have all the services or rules either. I would love a tiny house hi upon the hillside over looking the Tennessee river I have never really wanted a large house.

    • jerryd
      January 20, 2014, 3:19 pm

      Most homeless are that because cities especially made it illegal to live anywhere but in the large, expensive, wasteful size homes, apartments.

      They have removed the low rent housing and campgrounds, trailer parks or even woods in the past the less well off used when time were rough.

      All the ‘homeless’ needs is a parking space size place to make their home. But that is illegal, to keep low income people out.

      And many like living outdoors and the freedom it gives. But you can even buy land and in many places it’s illegal to camp on it.

      Most of the homeless are children, mothers, not the drunks many think. But even the drunks if given a small space at market rates will quickly make a home.

      And it’s just an accident, health problem or just bad luck anyone could end up homeless. I went bankrupt from medical costs even though I had insurance for instance. Now I get $700SSI which is allowing to start several businesses which will employ quite a few soon as an example of how it’s a better investment..

      And the next 2 decades things are going to be interesting as many corporate jobs will disappear and many formally well off are cast aside as no longer needed, we had better get a good TH system to help them from hitting bottom that cost far more.

      Better keep them simply sheltered, healthy, fed until they can stand on their own again, is the best, lowest cost option. Not to mention the Christian, humane option.

  • November 13, 2013, 3:07 pm


    • Alex Pino
      November 14, 2013, 10:11 am

      I agree 🙂

  • Cap'n Frank
    November 13, 2013, 7:54 pm

    “chronically homeless” Would this really be any help for those that are their own worst enemies? They belong in hospitals or mental institutions NOT free public housing
    Let’s worry MORE about the interim homeless that are on the street due to circumstances beyond their control.
    This type of housing would be a real help to people that DO NOT want to be on the street and just need a hand to get their lives back on track !!!

    • Alex Pino
      November 14, 2013, 9:12 am

      Good point Frank but I did read and hear in the original article that the homeless who will get to use this housing will be paying rent. It’s not a free ticket or a hand out. It’s an opportunity to improve their lives, if they have that desire. They will probably create jobs within the community, too, so that they can create goods and services and bring value to the surrounding area and each other.

      • Alex Pino
        November 14, 2013, 9:13 am

        Trust me, I definitely don’t believe in the government or anyone else giving any more hand outs. We need less of that as I think it encourages people who have potential to do nothing and get something just because it’s an easier option. Sad..

      • Cap'n Frank
        November 15, 2013, 1:59 pm

        Glad to hear this Alex!
        A help up not a hand out.

        • jm
          January 25, 2014, 2:51 pm

          Most homeless people are homeless because they lost their income. After waiting months or years to see if you qualify for government assistance the amount you’ll receive isn’t enough to cover rent and utilities. I know a homeless man with cancer who doesn’t qualify for public housing. He receives $500 a month and waited 2 yrs for it. His medical bills are high and there is no where for him to live. He lives homeless in cold New England weather. If he had shelter then he would have a greater chance at surviving cancer. No one deserves to be put down due to circumstances that are beyond their own control. The hand outs that these people get should be equivalent to the average monthly apartment rental and utility costs and the process to help them should be quicker. $500 a month with medical expenses and transportation costs to get to a place that can help is not enough to help someone get back on their feet or to become healthy again. Our society needs to let go of it’s “survival of the fittest” ideals and accept that not all are fit to survive on their own. Have we evolved or are we just left to our devices and conveniences? Homeless people don’t deserve to die out in extreme weather conditions if they can’t make it on their own. Homeless shelters aren’t free and a persons length of stay is limited. Hospitals aren’t free either and there are limits to staying there. It can take years of paperwork and energy for someone to qualify for public housing assistance by then it’s too late. I’m glad to know that some homeless people have the option to take handouts, when and if it’s available to them. What’s really sad is all the people in this world who take handouts from family members and friends when in need and then they turn around and scoff at homeless and disabled people. It’s a sadness you’ll never know unless you’ve been in that situation yourself. So affordable micro home parks are a good step forward in my opinion.

        • nan
          March 13, 2014, 5:50 pm

          Finally, someone who understands that some people can not make it on their own in this country – because of Inhumane Zoning Laws that exclude low income people from having a roof over their head. Homeless shelters are a huge Scam. It costs a minimum of $1,500 a month to give an indoor bed and a couple of meals to a homeless person. That doesn’t even include the hospital bills that are incurred because living homeless is very stressful and lowers immunity to all diseases, including cancer. Shelters claim to be non profit, but pays hundreds of thousands of dollars to their CEOs and board members who mostly don’t give a damn about the homeless. Investing in so called non profits is a Huge money maker for the n.p. corporations that set up shelters in every major city in the U.S. It’s also a racket because only certain “connected” people are allowed to open and operate homeless shelters. No average person can open a homeless shelter or even a tent city – because cities and counties have rules to prevent any one except the chosen few from setting up their profitable nonprofit in someone else’s “territory”. The whole shelter system is corrupt. Many churches want to help the homeless, but they are not allowed to shelter them on church property within a 5 -10 mile radius of an existing shelter. This is the real reason why so many people are living on the street, including thousands of women and children all across this country !!

        • Susie M
          June 18, 2014, 2:30 pm

          When will people realize that working for decades, paying into the ‘system’, then becoming too ill to work – qualifying for disability, is NOT a hand out??!!! It is an entitlement. That is why we pay into the system. SSDI = Social Security Disability Insurance.

          Qualifying is NOT easy, most are turned down on the first try, even with and obvious disabling conditions.

          It can take years, and lawyers to finally become approved. The irony being that the most ill do not have the stamina for that. Many people lose everything they have worked their entire life for. It’s certainly not enough to live on – but at least the tiny house movement offers an alternative to homelessness.

          An address is needed to qualify for food stamps and medicaid.
          A tiny house village like this, provides not only a roof; an address; relief from the added stress of homelessness when ill and unable to work – but a sense of community that is vital to a person’s mental health.

          All too often, homeless people become ‘invisible’. We all need human contact – any one of us could lose everything; become bankrupt; homeless; invisible; unable to work – due to an illness – and it is not always a visible one – Kudos to Allan Graham – may his vision take wings and fly – may it become the norm – may tiny house communities spring up all over the country – not just for the homeless; but true communities, including a number of units kept available especially for the homeless to get back on their feet.

          Every one needs a sense of purpose – that is lost when you are homeless – being part of a tiny house community means you can start to get your dignity back – even if all you can do is tend the garden a little – it is something worthwhile while getting back on your feet.
          That’s my two cents worth, you may, or may not agree; but that’s what this country is built on, freedom – so why do these bureaucrats have so much power over where and how we live? When, how, and why did we give up our freedoms to them?

    • Debbie
      May 31, 2014, 7:42 pm

      I will be homeless by the end of the month due to being laid off because a major insurance company pulled their contract from the company I worked for. No fault of my own. I have been laid off twice in 5 years. Used up all my savings while unemployed. My husband has been denied disability and is currently working with a lawyer for an appeal. Meanwhile…no income. I keep getting turned down for jobs. Probably because of my age and I am over qualified. I can no longer work as a nurse due to osteoarthritis in that I cannot make a fist with my left hand and CPR is a requirement. Also I have difficulty with holding or carrying anything in my left hand. We are being evicted with nowhere to go. Have exhausted friends and family as well as Church. This sucks and I NEVER imagined something like this would happen when I got older. I would LOVE a tiny house and would start paying for it when the disability checks start coming. In the meantime…..we have fallen in the cracks. The only assistance we get is food stamps. My dream would be to live in Florida where my “bones” would tolerate the weather. I PRAY SOMEONE WOULD BE ABLE TO HELP US. We are decent people and I have really been humbled by this experience but it is a nightmare and I’m waiting to wake up.

      • Annette S.
        June 11, 2014, 7:50 pm

        I surely would be able to help you if you where able to live in CT since their is a great Opertunity for you as a Dispatcher EMS that starts with a Salary of 58 G a year along with benefits of City and they do not judge age

        • Donna R
          August 29, 2014, 12:00 am

          Debbie and Annette – I understand Debbie’s dilemna. Went through a bit of the same myself. Fortunately, everything worked out for me with the help of family and friends. Kudos to Annette for offering up a possible solution to Debbie’s problem and not just commenting on it. A hand up can come from the most unlikely sources.

  • david
    November 14, 2013, 8:27 am

    C’MON MAN! Alex and all the others need to come back down to reality. You are living in a dreamland. The homeless in America are homeless because the socialist democrats think all you need to do is give people things and they will appreciate it and run out to get a job. BS! Just try to rent to someone on section 8 and all they do is take and destroy. Then move on to the next free housing and food. The homeless are homeless because they don’t want to better themselves. Look at what Obama and the liberal socialist have done to us already. Over 50% of people in America are sucking off of the rest of us. History repeats itself. 4,000 years ago Jacob brought the Israelites into slavery to the Pharaoh by giving them food. Obama and the socialists are doing all over again. Alex, before you give inspiration to such a dreamland you should try renting to the homeless first. I will bet your attitude will change in a short time. Oh yeah! about the zoning. Why do we have to pay money to help other people? You sound like another government paid liberal grabbing money from the working class. Not to sound too negative, how about developing jobs and developing character instead of giving out money like Robin Hood and destroying character.

    • Alex Pino
      November 14, 2013, 9:08 am


      1. I’m a big dreamer and not ashamed of it and will always be one.

      2. No, you won’t take me “back down” to reality

      3. If you read the article or heard the audio you’ll learn that he is charging these homeless people rent, he’s not giving them anything but an opportunity to improve their lives.

      4. Not all homeless people don’t want to improve themselves.

      5. I never said I wanted to GIVE anyone ANYTHING. I’m a firm believer in the process of EARNING and would never teach otherwise.

      • ellen
        November 14, 2013, 10:09 am

        Don’t worry about that guy, Alex. He is pushing his own agenda. He’s obviously religious, and yet he forgets that Jesus was all about helping the poor. People are homeless for many reasons. Housing that is inexpesive by its nature, rather than just subsidized, is a fantastic idea, and would allow many people who are priced out of the housing market to find a place in it.

        • Alex Pino
          November 14, 2013, 10:12 am

          Thanks Ellen I appreciate that

      • Alex Pino
        November 14, 2013, 10:13 am

        And just to add to my list there, lol…

        6. It’s always a great thing to GIVE (or should we use the word OFFER?) an OPPORTUNITY.

        And I believe that’s what this is. An opportunity for the homeless to make a positive change when nobody else is believing in them.

      • Shelly
        February 18, 2014, 1:21 am

        Alex, I love what you represent!!
        I want to learn more

    • Alex Pino
      November 14, 2013, 9:17 am

      And by the way I’m pretty sure the business man behind this whole thing is turning homeless people into folks who pay rent and work and give back value to society so I think maybe you just didn’t read or listen to the original article and are just making false assumptions on this situation and it’s kind of offensive..

    • Debbie
      November 15, 2013, 2:50 am

      David,If you are going to speak scripture.The Lord said to forgive your Brother even 7 times.He men’t as many time’s as you have to.I was a Bartender and then a Hairstylist,some Guy’s and I am not going to get into all,But they snaped my neck.Left my key’s in my car.to dispose of me after the 3 ran off with my purse.it has led to adult ricket’s and all kind of spinal damage.But if it was’nt for Sec.8 I would be homeless I have been here for 7 yr.and if anything I improve the building.I flea spray the hall’s clean out the washer and dryer because people think because they don;t own this.they dont have to care because they wont be here for-ever.you never know.I think it is great that you work I had a worker’s permit at 14 so Please don’t put me in a group.Oh and to wake up I read scriptures and related book’s3-4 hoursI will pray that you find peace Love All Debbie

    • Carol
      February 18, 2014, 6:24 pm

      I hope you never fall on hard times David, and if you should I hope that you don’t encounter anyone as heartless as yourself. Lots of people have been homeless by no fault of their own and have been able to get back on their feet by the help of others. I was one of them, thank goodness my mother gave me a place to stay, it took me two months to find a job and I took the bus… eventually I was able to buy a used Volkswagon bug and then after awhile a place of my own. Shame on you.

    • JS
      April 9, 2014, 3:43 pm

      David, there’s is some truth in what you’re saying, but it’s incredibly one-sided and partisan. Obama and the Democrats don’t wake up in the morning looking for ways to be wasteful and socialist. That’s just false.

      Yet, I was particularly struck by your “take and destroy” comment. It’s true to an extent, but as others know it’s far from universally true.

      Without belaboring or going on a rant myself, you can only win by gaining a macro perspective and finding common ground. The good vs. evil approach isn’t going to work. It only fosters the system that maintains the status quo.

    • T Joy
      June 13, 2014, 10:41 pm

      It’s shocking the stigmas of the characterization of the noun “homeless”, means to be without a home, a verb. Since when did the basic food, shelter and clothing be a social bias ism that “lazy, blood sucking people choose the system”. I’m here to say that is BS….I’m disabled, two spinal cord surgeries after my husband broke my back. We weren’t white trash. We were, hard working, home buying, and church going family. It has been my worst nightmare to end up with a dibilating injury. It’s a dream to have the ability to focus on my health, not the physical survival of shelter. It’s impossible to recover from such injuries without a place to call “home”. I fight monthly with disability, go to hearings, spend hours on the phone correcting coding errors, insurance errors and it’s finally made me think I’m scared to death. I can’t go back to the street. If only I had a tiny space, free and clear of bills, I could devote my life to PT and OT, learning a skill from my bed or wheelchair. In addition the disability has caused so much emotional debt, I’m in therapy to work through the grief. I lost everything due to the inability to work and I WANT TO! I’m in chronic pain, have a secondary injury of a torn router cuff due to the heavy wheelchair I’m confined to 90% of my up time. Otherwise I’m in bed. I need very little in this material world. I want to focus on my ABILITIES, the reconnection with my 16 year old twins who have lived through homelessness and my surgeries, the fight with SS, and lack of local services. The best gift I’ve received I’m happy with less stuff. Simplifying my life daily, cleaning up the past and hoping for a better future. I, T JOY, am the new face of “HOMELESS”! Peopple get EDUCATED and BETTER YET GET INVOLVED IN YOUR COMMUNITY, listen, ask if you can serve. Those of you out there like me…find your ABILITY, make a change, even if your only asset today is your smile, do that, for perspective and compassion are born out of SEEING, being mindful and most of all finding alternative ways to survive and be happy. A Tiny Home is a perfect solution to so many social and economic issues. I’d be so grateful to have such a place to call my own home. Sometimes people just need a hand up, then their up and on their way. That too is I!

    • kyle
      August 16, 2014, 5:27 pm

      We are talking about homeless people not people on Sec 8…not that I agree that everyone in a sec 8 home is worthless scum.

      The people you are speaking about are not and probably will never be homeless, at least until things change. The worthless folks you speak are one of our biggest problems(but those people are the minority imo, not the majority). People like them know how to work the system and take all they can(which they always do). Most the honest, decent folks who are down are luck don’t know any better. They aren’t trying to “work” or “beat” the system and probably have too much pride to do so.

      Yes, robin hood sucks….much better to just give the money to more billions dollar corrupt company.

      I’d keep going but I’m not going to waste my breathe…except to ask one thing.

      Why do you rent to sec 8 tenants then? I assume it is because of all the benefits you suck out of the government. Seems there wouldn’t be a sec 8 program out there if people like you didn’t allow them to move in. Since we’re stereotyping…I guess I’ll just assume you’re another shady Sec. 8 slumlord :). Sounds like you’re simply working the system like “all” your tenants.

    • Dora
      March 16, 2015, 6:39 pm

      David needs to gather his facts instead of repeating everyone else’s gossip. Research your own statistics. I have out of work and pretty much homeless since 2008. I have also been trying to get not only my disability from ssi (which I paid into and earned) but also have been trying to work with doctors I can’t afford so that I can possibly some day return to the work place. I hate being homeless and I don’t like having to rely on anyone else either. I am homeless because the waiting list for HUD and section 8 housing where I live is closed and even if it weren’t, I couldn’t afford the deposit to move into it a home. So where does that leave me or those like me?

  • Doc
    November 14, 2013, 1:54 pm

    We also need to understand that some people are homeless by choice. And that’s OK. Not everony wants or needs a shelter as we perceive it. Afterall, they are the epitome of reducing carbon footprint and living tiny. Their stuff has been reduced to what they can carry. They have the freedom to live wherever they choose! North in the summer, south in the winter, no problem. They are not a slave to their stuff or the banks. They are the ones that are truly free.

    For those that want to reset I think this is a great plan. Grand rapids Michigan did a story last winter if a homeless community that the homeless built along the grand river. The local businesses and individuals helped out by donating doors, windows other building materials, firewood, food and personal care items. They let them care for themselves as they choose to. Many variations of this theme could work. We just need to do something, as you see here, anything.

  • Leonard McCullough
    November 14, 2013, 11:35 pm

    We need one in Detroit.

  • junior
    January 20, 2014, 6:37 pm

    U David sound like a stuck up prick!! Not every homeless person is just looking for a handout. After the economy went to sh#t many family’s became homeless. And after losing their jobs then their homes it is hard to get back on their feet. And the cost of homes now days is threw the roof! I think what this guy is doing is a great idea and will help many people. If I had the property, money and the resources I would love to do the same..

  • Peter
    January 20, 2014, 7:49 pm

    There are two federal programs that might be receptive to the idea of an, affordable, tiny house community.

    Title V program
    HUD collects and publishes information about surplus federal property that can be used to help homeless persons. Eligible grantees include states, local governments, and nonprofit organizations.

    Base Realignment and Closure
    The congressionally authorized process the US Department of Defense has previously used to reorganize its base structure to more efficiently and effectively support our military forces, increase operational readiness and facilitate new ways of doing business.

    This seems to be THE problem with tiny houses.

  • christina brownlee
    January 23, 2014, 6:07 am

    Well I am from Idaho and we have a lot of people homeless or in section 8 housing …I’m a firm believer that life does not always go the way we wish it to go. I’m a single parent with 2 kids still at home under the age of 18. I thank god everyday that my dad has this house that my kids and I live in. If it wasn’t for him my kids and myself would be homeless. I cant afford the rent to get us a 3 bedroom here in Idaho. So that would put my family on the street or in section 8 housing. I work a full time job and pay the bills for the house ,I have worked a full time job for years and it just don’t pay enough…..We need more people to do as Alex you said “I never said I wanted to GIVE anyone ANYTHING. I’m a firm believer in the process of EARNING and would never teach otherwise.Sometimes life sends us on a path to help others sometimes not. Tiny homes may be the answer to this we don’t no till we try and that’s what matters in this day and age…

  • tom
    February 7, 2014, 9:42 am

    David is correct on many points. The mega-church that I do business with has many self help programs that are available to all. These include a financial ministry that teaches people to live within their means . This follows a Dave Ramsey program that is used nationwide.The church gives these homeless people a apt. and feeds them for as long as it takes to get them on their feet. The catch is that they must follow the program. That means no cig.alcohol,cellphones,cable tv and such because they can’t afford them. They are removed from the program if they don’t follow it to the letter. I asked him how many complete the program and are now self sustaining ? He said almost none. One must remember that looking at the big picture we are on the earth in relation to eternity but the blink of an eye.It doesn’t matter whether we are rich or poor sick or well In the big picture God will reward us by how we lived for the rest of eternity .Groups of small houses have historically turned into dumps and squalor if people are left to their own in most cases as they attract people that don’t have the means or desire to better themselves hence those that do don’t want to live like that so they do what is necessary to avoid that. Look at Charles Krauthammer paralyzed from the neck down yet one of the most wealthy people in the news business.

  • February 17, 2014, 11:41 am

    Alex: Thanks for sharing this information! Clearly there are a lot of people who feel strongly about housing the so-called “chronically homeless”…not only in the U.S., but around the world. I find it somewhat amusing that those who have strong negative opinions probably have never met and gotten to know anyone in the situation that this development hopes to help.

    I think it’s wonderful that someone has taken it upon their shoulders to create a potential solution to the problem. Is it a hand out or a help up? That is not for me to decide. This one solution is just a drop in the bucket to a much larger problem.

    Putting this in the Tiny House Talk world may inspire others to create their own solutions to helping the homeless, chronic or temporary. It can also inspire others who are willing to buy a home, yet cannot afford what Americans have come to feel is the “minimum” house and lot size, who may only have trailer parks as an alternative. I love the idea of tiny house communities and hope you can share more ideas here on this forum!

  • Debbie Lindstrom
    February 23, 2014, 6:17 pm

    I would love to live in a tiny little house. I have been homeless because of loosing my boyfriend, my art gallery, my cat, all my belongings, and of course all of my pride. Anyone who has been homeless knows what the majority of homeless are like. I am not homeless at the moment because I am willing to help my mean mother in her old age. I have learned to follow God’s rules and I work hard and study all the time. The homeless people I have lived with and the ones I listen to now all have addictions. When you decide to stop being addicted and take responsibility for yourself, you can get back to saving money so you can get a place to live. There are very few that I have met that have chosen to be homeless on a permanent basis. Only one I know lives behind the Police station and they don’t know he is there. He goes to San Diego for the winter because here in the Seattle area you can freeze to death in the winter. We have shelters for when it drops below 32 degrees, but I personally would not like to go camping in 35-40 degree poring down rain weather. I thought it would be nice to buy a house and have some homeless people live with me, but I can’t afford to have people smoke, drink, and gamble my money away. They also have no respect for your property and damage things without even trying to fix or pay for them to be fixed. There is a tiny home place for homeless in the Olympia area. They are not getting these for free and there are rules. None of the homeless I know are able or willing to do this. One drinks all the money he gets begging. One gambles all the money she gets from people who “give her gas money” or when she returns a blanket the Salvation army gives her. One gets his drugs with money from selling jewelry his wife makes. This is reality as harsh as it may be to the “helping people” who feel happy when they can help. Anytime you give them money for no reason, you are keeping them locked in their addiction.

    • jerryd
      February 25, 2014, 8:58 pm

      Debbie most homeless are not addicts, but children, families instead.

      Facts are the addicted make up little of the homeless, most are just regular people, families that lost their jobs.

      And the addicted are mentally ill as addiction is just a symptom, not the problem, which is much deeper. Solve it and the addiction goes away.

      As for tiny homes I’ve built many for $200 in materials and since they float they are rent free. So really not much excuse to be without shelter near anywhere if one doesn’t want to be.

      I’ve lived an urban camping life for many decades living many places other than homes, apartments, mostly my boats, wharehouses , living at my businesses, etc so know the homeless problem well.

      For you I suggest you find another place to live. There are many ways like housesitting, dog sitting, etc. People will give you boats even and many other ways.

      Move to North Dakota, etc boom areas if you need work though bring a trailer with you as many are homeless there even making $100k/yr!!

  • Capt Turk
    February 26, 2014, 10:03 am

    I went from being a $100,000+ a year maritime captain, to being near homeless. My back was broken on a boat. The company went bankrupt to keep from paying any medical bills. The company had refused to help with getting me or my family any medical insurance. Medical Insurance for a merchant seaman is outrageously expensive because of the risk of injury or death. The premium, for just me, was more than most people would pay for a large family. All my savings and investments went to medical bills. I can not longer work because of extreme continuous pain, and can barely even walk. My wife has been disabled for years so can’t work either. Thankfully, just as all my resources and savings ran out, I became old enough to draw Social Security, and finally after years of trying, managed to get disability.
    I had 5 acres in the country, almost paid for. The county threw me off my own land for living in an RV, and threatened to throw me in jail for it. Because of that, I could no longer make the mortgage and lost the property. I’m lucky, really. I still have the small RV so my wife and I do have a place to live. Were it not for that little RV, we would most probably be homeless and living on the street.
    For those that are up on their high horse and think that if you are homeless you are a worthless, drunk, dope head, or lazy bum, all it takes to end up homeless is some bad breaks. You can VERY easily end up there too.

  • david
    April 11, 2014, 10:09 pm

    Most say great! Then do nothing to help the homeless. Churches are the worst. I was homeless. Built a revolution in tiny homes. Youtube soon!

    Do something to help or please keep quiet!

  • Lydie
    April 20, 2014, 5:52 pm

    I would live alone. I need a tiny cabin with a tiny cost in Georgia 🙂

    • judy
      May 3, 2014, 1:31 pm

      Quite a few people are making blanket statements, which can’t be validated. Yes, I’m sure there are homeless who are that way through no fault of their own but again I’ve seen those that are addicts and have been though recovery programs that have not been successful do to the persons addictive nature. Also what works in one part of the country doesn’t work in others. A half hour from where I live in VA, the zoning is completely different , road frontage,sq ft requirements etc. Just as the NIMBY mentality of group homes has reared it’s head, so too are those that do not want tiny houses in their midst. I admit to not having the answer but feel discussion is good as long as those with various views are not verbally attacked.

  • Lydie Anderson
    May 5, 2014, 5:14 pm

    I am not homeless nor am I an addict. I am older, divorced and living with my son. I want to live alone. I don’t know where you got your idea.

  • Lynn Baker
    June 24, 2014, 8:26 am

    I would love to live in a tiny house if I could fit seven people in it and off the grid. so tired of the rat race and you don’t seem like you get ahead. We were almost homeless due to my husband having surgery and trying to get disability with no luck. thankful for family that helped and now he is back working but in constant pain. we are just getting caught up in lot rent, we own the trailer home but it never ends. I would love to live off the land and don’t have the fear of being kicked out of your home because you owe lot rent. live in florida so don’t know any programs that could help a big family get on there feet. your post is very encouraging.

  • Eugene
    June 24, 2014, 2:15 pm

    places like these tiny house communities for homeless are great ideas, every winter I hear of several homeless freezing to death, due to not enough room in the local shelters or too much pride to stay at the shelter,etc..and this would save lives.
    I spoke to one person last fall that told me if they had a place like a tiny house community many of the local homeless would thrive and be able to attain employment, as many lost employment due to becoming homeless.

  • Rita
    December 20, 2015, 11:46 pm

    So many sad stories. So many great ideas that could be such a big help to those in need. It is a shame it is so slow and hard to get these changes made so people in need could feel self worth again. I am thankful for all I have and feel so very blessed. I wish I was younger and healthier and Be a help for getting these things a reality. I love the tiny house movement and the idea of tiny house communities. If my husband passes before me my plan is to live in a tiny home and preferably in a community . I would love to start building it now , so by the time I am ready I hope you all have paved the way for us golden oldies?. Blessings to you all and try and have a warm and safe holiday. I will be sending up prayers for you ALL??

  • Mary-Margaret
    February 14, 2016, 9:55 pm

    PLEASE !!!! I’ve been trying to find a TINY HOME COMMUNITY for months. I now live in MO. Love to move to TX., or Alabama in a tiny community.

  • Mary Wilson
    August 25, 2016, 11:37 pm

    Would love to have a tiny home for me and my son,I am disabled and fighting cancer,I am struggling to just pay month to month payments..by prayers and the good Grace of God maybe one day my dreams &prayer’s will come true and I will get to own a tiny house??

  • Victoria Rose
    January 15, 2017, 8:50 pm

    Hello Mary:
    In Jesus name by his stripes you are healed! And yes, you and your Son will in God’s timing have your tiny home. Praise God!

  • Sarah
    April 4, 2018, 3:57 am

    I am about to be homeless this week for the first time. Can somebody just pray for me? Thank you and God bless you.

    • Alex
      April 4, 2018, 10:05 am

      Hi Sarah, praying for you now.

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