Could you live in a “tiny house”?

By Chuck Bentley

It may not be such a crazy idea.

What exactly qualifies as a “tiny house”? The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development defines a tiny house as one that is smaller than 320 square feet. That is about 20’ long by 15’ wide. It is generally hand-built and constructed on a trailer.

could you live in a tiny house

So why has this become a booming industry? In most cases, it makes living costs more affordable than buying or renting.

A tiny house generally costs around $23,000 for approximately 186 square feet. The average starting price for a new home in the U.S. is $277,000 for 2,600 square feet. The cost of living in a tiny house is much lower. Electricity, heating, and air all cost less.

ABC News did a recent feature on this growing trend and gave the three main things tiny house owners say that they love best about it:

1. Less time spent cleaning. It takes less than an hour to clean tiny homes.

2. Higher quality of life. Many said that once they shed their “stuff,” their happiness improved.

3. More savings. When you don’t have extra space, there isn’t room for extra “stuff.”

While a tiny home seems like a wonderful investment, there are a couple of disadvantages to this lifestyle, according to the same report. Organization is crucial. If your tiny home isn’t adequately organized—well, don’t try it. Plus, you have to give up a significant amount of your possessions that may be needed later, and the space might not meet your lifestyle needs.

However, if you are in a financial bind, a year or two in a tiny house may be a viable solution for you.

Originally posted 5/21/2015.