So, here’s some crazy truth: according to the Census Bureau, the average new home size in America in 2015 was 2721 square feet. Compare that to the average size of 1000 square feet in the 1950s, and then further consider the shrinking size of American families, and it seems a little ridiculous that we feel we need so much space. But we’re the super-sized nation, right? Go big or go (to a larger) home!
While the increasing size average doesn’t appear to be reversing anytime soon, though, there is a smaller trend on the rise: the tiny home. The sheer number of shows centered around this concept (Tiny House, Big Living; Tiny House Builders; and Tiny House Hunter have all made the HGTV rotation), implies that the increasing awareness of squandering natural resources, coupled with increasing mindfulness of how quickly the housing market can turn, could lead to smaller quarters.
For the last several years, tiny houses have been growing in popularity, both in the United States and abroad. A typical tiny house is around 100-400 square feet, and is naturally far less expensive than traditional homes in terms of taxes, energy usage, and maintenance. They are also frequently built on wheels. Small AND portable equals a tempting package for many.
First, let’s break down some basics when looking at the benefits of tiny house building:
- You will save on your construction costs.
- You will save on your mortgage interest.
- You will save on your utilities – SO much!
- You will save on your insurance.
- You will save on maintenance costs.
And you’ll be the super cool person in the neighborhood with the tiny house, so be prepared for that excitement/notoriety.
Breaking it down further, because you will be saving so much on construction costs, you may as well do this thing right. Trick it out with spray-foam insulation, ENERGY STAR® qualified windows, and LED lights. The number of solar panels necessary to cover your electric bill will be minimal, and then you can further consider hybrid solar electric heating, ventilation, and air conditioning system. This is only if you want to blow your own mind with the savings, and those of all your neighbors at the block parties they’ll be wanting to have as an excuse to nose around your new digs.
Even if you’re not prepared to commit to tiny home living (bunch of kids/pets/company), it’s definitely worth doing a little research to see just how many cool things are happening within that housing category. There are a host of resources available to aid in your research, such as www.ase.org (Alliance to Save Energy), www.greenlivingspaces.org, www.energy.gov, and www.tinyhouseblog.com.
So what’s the harm? Check it out. Life is about choices. It’s time to stop comparing ourselves to the 2700-square-foot Joneses and start blazing our own trails. Is life really about who has the fanciest possessions? Or is it about the level of personal satisfaction you can get by doing the right thing?
Give us a call at 417-612-7092, and let us help you discover and forge your OWN path.