If you have ever seen a tiny house reality television show, you are probably surprised by the more than occasional reveal at the end where the couple who is moving in says, “Wow, it’s so tiny!” If you are like me, you yell at the TV, “WHAT DID YOU THINK IT WAS GOING TO BE? IT’S A TINY HOUSE!!!” But the sad truth is that many people who get into the tiny house market have never seen a tiny house in person, let alone been inside of one. So how do you prepare yourself for the conversion to a tiny home? Well you need to get inside of them, of course! So if you have ever asked, "How do I find tiny houses near me?" then here are a few ways that you can get a taste of tiny living without making the commitment to buying.
Although the market is becoming more and more diverse the older the tiny house movement gets, finding a builder who has models for you to tour is tougher than you think. If you are lucky and they are in the middle of building a house, you can probably pop by to take a look. Just call first. One of the things to remember is that local contractors may build tiny homes, but they aren’t typically going to stock them because of the expense to keep an inventory. To be fair, there are a lot of people who claim to build tiny homes, but haven’t ever built any. So a search may be fruitless and time consuming. You may be able to find some through our Tiny House Marketplace.
Believe it or not, there are a lot of people who get into the tiny house movement, only to have circumstances happen upon them and force them to go back to big living. Many of these folks in turn rent their tiny homes out. There is no better way to see if you are right for tiny living than to spend a couple nights doing so. Vrbo.com and airbnb.com are two personal rental websites with very robust filters, but they have not yet broken out “Tiny House” as a category. But let me promise you that they are there. Choose "bungalow", "studio", or sometimes "other" to find them. I have also found them under “whole House” and then I choose 1 bedroom and voila! Tiny houses await! We have also created a board in Pinterest that list Tiny House Rental. Some of these tiny house owners will even let you come by and take a peek at the house without having to stay in it. But here is a word of advice: stay. Stay for a couple of days and really get a feel for it. Don’t be the couple going, “Wow! It’s so small!” because I will yell at you on my television. You may also find someone near you on the Tiny House Map that would be open to giving you a tour.
If there are no tiny house builders near you, you can at least get a feel for the space (or lack thereof) by finding a local shed dealer. Go take a look at a shed that is about 8 ft. wide by whatever length they have and now picture your entire life in there. There is a lot less room than you think. Some people will mark out the dimensions on their garage or living room floor so they can visualize how much room they will have and try to put everything they have within that space. But without actual walls, the space within the floor markings can appear deceivingly small. The average tiny house is about 192 sq. ft. which is smaller than some people’s bathroom. So it takes a lot to go tiny and no matter how small you think it might be, when you see it in person you are still going to be surprised. But that is mostly because it is relative to what you are used to. Which is why it’s better to spend some quality time in a home. So get out there and look! You are bound to end up saying, "Wow! There are a lot of tiny houses near me!" Have you rented or stayed in a tiny house? Tell us about your experience!
Published on 3/25/2021. Published in Tiny House Research.