“We live in a tiny home.” A decade ago, this statement would have caused looks of sympathy. Now, it’s a topic of fascination and conversation — yet another example of how time changes all!
The tiny home movement has only continued to pick up speed. We all know the benefits: costs less to own and operate, takes up less space, encourages a minimalist lifestyle. But is owning a small house actually worth it? The RealtyHive blog is here to investigate.
Are tiny houses timeless, or simply trending?
Tiny houses are currently all the rage, but is this a trend that will last?
Historically, how people choose to occupy space is something that ebbs and flows. In the era of mass immigration during the 1800s, people flocked to New York by the millions, cramming into tiny apartments — sometimes shared by multiple families.
By the end of the 19th century and beginning of the 20th, we saw a rise in Victorian manors and people moving westward, demonstrating a shift in people’s desire for more space. Row homes and single family homes grew in popularity in the ‘50s, only for sprawling mansions and bigger homes to be the trend of the ‘80s.
Based on these trends, it’s safe to predict that if everyone had a tiny home, we’d all eventually crave something roomier (or at the very least, future generations would). The resale value of a tiny house is remarkable right now, but down the line, this might not be the case.
Minimal size = minimal lifestyle?
Most of the time, tiny homes are depicted on the outskirts — both of society and societal norms as a whole. From gorgeous treehouse bungalows to shipping container homes in the Southwest, you’ll typically find these homes in more remote areas.
That’s great for the person living off the grid or the freelancer working from home, but what about the majority of people working 9-to-5s? Many subdivisions won’t allow tiny homes — there usually is a minimum square footage requirement. Longer commutes themselves are a nuisance, but for someone trying to lessen their carbon footprint, a tiny house probably isn’t the solution.
Tiny home expenses = tiny financial impact?
Certainly, this is one of the greatest advantages to the small house movement. Building costs are likely less than buying a more traditional single family home.
With less room to heat/cool, light, and even clean than traditional homes, tiny houses will have substantially lower operation costs. Plus, less storage means you physically won’t be able to buy more stuff. People often forget that owning a house costs much more than just the down payment and mortgage — much of this can be eliminated with a tiny home.
More people = more problems?
This question goes in two directions:
Globally: As our population continues to grow, there’s a good chance that we will simply need to adjust to living in smaller spaces. For that reason, a tiny house could still have desirability in the future and positively influence your potential for ROI.
Individually: A tiny house is great for a person or a couple. It becomes significantly more challenging for growing families. As kids get older, space becomes a priority — not to mention more “stuff” (everything from toys to school papers) begins to accumulate.
What worked for two people will be a massive challenge for three or four. If having a family is important to you, a tiny home might not fit your family’s needs.
For most people, tiny homes probably won’t work in the long run. But only you can decide if this is a worthy investment and lifestyle for you. Still on board with a tiny house? Check out our vacant land for sale to find the perfect place to build (oceanfront property in Honduras, anyone?). Thinking about finding a more traditional (yet modest) house? Look through the RealtyHive listings to find your dream home!