There is a new movement sweeping the country and a TV series on the FYI Channel to feature it, Tiny House Nation. Talk about downsizing! The average home in the USA is about 2,100 sq ft. The average tiny home is about 230 sq ft. To qualify as being in the tiny houses category, the house must be 500 sq ft or less. Much like the prepper and off-the-grid movements, the tiny house movement is all about simplicity. Restructuring your life by focusing on what is truly important. Hosted by Zack Giffin and John Weisbarth, each episode covers one build for a new and unique tiny home. So are you ready to emigrate to the Tiny House Nation?

tiny house nation
This small, mobile home was featured on Tiny House Nation. Image Credit: FYI.TV

The trend towards tiny homes is fueled by a variety of reasons. Creative people seeking an alternative to the hum-drum of keeping up with the Jones. Retirees who seek to save money or travel, towing their tiny home with them. Young couples who want a home but not a 30-year mortgage. Minimalists who don′t want to tempt fate and live a life of clutter. Of course, there are serious economic reasons as well. With recent polls showing more than half of the population thinking the economy stinks under Obama, a tiny home is a great way to rough it out and even go where the jobs are in Red States like Texas and North Dakota. We also see many ′nesters′, young people who are forced to move back to their parents home, joining the tiny house movement. Some are building a tiny house to park in their folks′ backyard so they can have some privacy and stay out from underfoot of their parents.

Tiny houses range in price from about $16,000 to $40,000. Much depends on the size, appliances and materials. Plans can be had for as little as about $300 for you Do-It-Yourself-ers, or a few thousand dollars to have a creative architect draw some up for you. Finding a local contractor to build your tiny home may prove to be difficult, but, as the movement grows, that task should get easier. There are many websites and blogs dedicated to the cause, so you may find assistance by searching them.

Aside from the size of your budget, your first consideration in choosing a tiny house design will be mobility and access to utilities. Do you want to be able to move it? If so, then you′ll be limited by the size of your trailer which will serve as your foundation to build upon. This will limit you to about a 40×13.5×8.5 foot size home due to road-tow laws in most states. Still, that is not bad, since that gives you about 340 sq ft to play with along with one or two loft areas for sleeping or storage. Then comes the issue of utilities. Will you have access to electricity, water, sewage lines and natural gas? If not, then you′ll have to think in terms of RV type systems and appliances fro heating, kitchens, bathrooms and the like.

Then comes the subject of property. No, not land, that will be easy. I′m talking about personal property, like clothing, books, etc. All of that clutter we tend to accumulate over the years. Needless to say, living in a tiny home forces you to be very frugal as far as how you use space. Or should I say, how you fill your space? This is where a good design can really help in maximizing efficiency with making furnishings multipurpose. Depending on your circumstance, you can always add steel sheds or modified shipping containers on your land for additional storage space. Especially if you are building something permanent that will not be moved.

I love Tiny House Nation as seen weekly on the FYI Channel. Its a great show! The tiny home movement may not be for everyone but a growing number of people are buying or building tiny houses. Some do it out of economic necessity. Others as an expression of life style seeking to minimalism and remove clutter from their lives. Whatever the reason or purpose, Tiny House Nation is here!