As soon as we found out it was screening here, we jumped on the opportunity. As minimalists, we’re particularly interested in Tiny House living. We’ve spent hours scrolling through gorgeous Tiny Houses on Instagram feeds, wondering if this is a movement we could eventually join.
We love the idea of spending tens of thousands instead of hundreds of thousands on a house. We also like the liberty and freedom to travel with your Tiny House. Lastly, we’re far from being handy, so there would be a great sense of accomplishment and satisfaction in building a Tiny House.
The film also outlined the benefits of being part of a passionate Tiny House community. This would be another great upside if you were fortunate to live in an area where the movement is strong.
But with all of the benefits of Tiny House living, we’re still not convinced that it’s for us. In fact watching the film actually discouraged us from building a Tiny House at all.
In this post we look at the top 5 reasons why we wouldn’t join the Tiny House movement. Please keep in mind that these are only our opinions. We would love to see what you think in the comments at the end of this post.
Let’s get into it.
1. Building a Tiny House is Stressful
If you’re anything like us, you don’t have a handy bone in your body. So naturally building a house from the ground up is going to come with its set of challenges. After watching the film, we overlooked all of the logistics, including;
- Putting together designs
- Sourcing materials
- Fitting the roof (this looked extremely stressful)
- Getting the correct measurements
- Installing fixtures and fittings
- Finding a location to build the house
- Finding the time to build the house (can take months upon months)
Of course this is all fairly straight forward if you have a building background or you know someone who has.
But for us, no thank you!
2. Finding Land To Rent Your Tiny House
This is something we completely overlooked. We thought you could setup your Tiny House pretty much anywhere, after all, isn’t that one of the main benefits of this lifestyle? As the film clearly demonstrated, finding land is not a easily found. In certain cities, there are Tiny House parks, similar to caravan parks. You can also negotiate to rent land with landlords.
Like any piece of real estate, you need to read up on your local government zoning legislation and permits to avoid getting notices and fines.
3. A Tiny House is Too Tiny
Don’t get me wrong, we think Tiny Houses are adorable and as minimalists, we would welcome the challenge of reducing the the amount of things we own to accommodate little house living.
Having said that, minimalism is about keeping the things you love and eliminating the rest. And quite frankly, we’re not concerned about room sizes, but we do like having a bit of kitchen space as we do a lot of cooking. Pantry space, fridge space and bench space is all important to us. So this in itself is a deal breaker for us.
4. Tiny House Toilets
As we were reflecting back on the film in the car, we realised that we didn’t see any Tiny House toilets!
It turns out this is not as straight forward as you would think. Please excuse our ignorance on this topic.
But yes, unless you have a water tank, which I assume wouldn’t be feasible in most Tiny Houses, you’ll have to look for composting solutions. After doing a bit of snooping around, I found this great video.
Honestly though, this just isn’t for us. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve experienced similar solutions in West Africa, but for the most part, I prefer a water tank based solutions. I feel petty even just saying that! First world problems eh?
5. Building a Tiny House Could End Your Relationship
The final reason we wouldn’t build a Tiny House, is the strain that it could put on our relationship. Not only would the building process be stressful, but living in such a confined space together day in and day out could become a problem.
We feel that in every relationship you need some space to do your own thing. And the environment in which you live in is crucial to create that space.
This was one of the main takeaways after watching the film, as they highlighted the ups and downs of how building a Tiny House affected the relationship of young couple, Nikki and Mitchell (see below). Photo credit.
What We Would Consider
So there’s our top 5 reasons we wouldn’t build a Tiny House. However there are a few instances where we might reconsider.
Skip or outsource the building process – it may be worth saving up more money for an established Tiny House. It’s still considerably cheaper than buying a normal free standing house, and you skip the stress of building it from the ground up. If you prefer creative control, you could work with a builder to turn your designs into reality. Once again, this may cost you more, but it ensures that you get what you want without the stress of building it yourself.
We also like the idea of having a Tiny House without wheels. This increases the scope of the project in terms of land size and house size. However by the time you go down this path, you’re approaching similar costs to a normal free standing house. So I don’t know if it would be worth it. Something to consider, nevertheless.
Over To You
Do you often dream of living in a gorgeous little house on wheels or are you against the movement altogether? We would love to get your thoughts below.
PS – if you’re interested in learning more about building a Tiny House, check out this list of FAQs from the Tiny House Community.
PPS – And if you haven’t seen it already, we highly recommend you see SMALL is Beautiful – A Tiny House Documentary. It’s definitely an eye-opener!