Insights · July 10th, 2012
Micro homes, or tiny houses, are becoming more appealing as affordable housing options are less and less abundant in cities with overcrowded populations. This increasing density issue will be a topic of conversation in a book I’m co-authoring late this Fall on the future of cities, but until then the focus is on micro homes as a possible answer to this increasing lack of space.
Micro homes often come with all the amenities of larger homes—refrigerator, stove, washer/dryer, dishwasher, and double sink—but they are more affordable and less harsh on the environment. Some are powered off the grid by solar panels and propane, while others are built with sustainable materials.
Building and owning micro homes is easier than you may think, now that some “Cities like Seattle have recently changed their zoning code to allow these detached accessory dwelling units (nicknamed “DADU’s”). More cities should be doing as much as they can to allow housing options that have such a low impact on local resources. And for the price, why wouldn’t you consider housing like this? See ten tiny houses from all across the country for examples of homes with building costs ranging from $16,000-$95,000. If you’re super thrifty you can get the building costs down to $3,000, like this Victorian style tiny house.
Even if you have only recently heard about tiny homes, take note that this is not at all a new fad. There’s even a how-to guide from 1995 on building your own micro house, a plan that pegs the building price at approximately $900 plus labor and space.