Life in 120 Square Feet Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What are the codes or zoning laws for tiny houses in my area?

A: While tiny house builders and dwellers love to share their experience and stories it is important to remember that every tiny house is different. Legal issues surrounding them vary from place to place. They can even be very different between neighboring municipalities in the same county. The best thing to do when you decided where you want to park or build your tiny house is to contact the government officials in the area to learn more. I also highly recommend "Cracking the Code" by Ryan Mitchell.

Q: We are going to be in your area and would love to see your house. Can we stop by? 

A: Since I have been blogging about our tiny house adventures for years now I am frequently asked if we allow people to come see our tiny house.

While I would love to be in a position to answer this question with a Yes, there are circumstances which require me to refuse most requests.

Our tiny house is off the beaten path in a rural area of Western North Carolina. We have a few neighbors who moved to this area to be away from the constant stimulation of the city. Ultimately the reason we chose to build our house where we did was to have our own privacy as well. We like that the tiny house is tucked away in the woods away from major traffic. In fact, it is tucked so far in the woods there isn't even a road to get to it. We don't publicize the exact location of the tiny house because we want to keep our privacy and we respect the privacy of our neighbors.

Instead, I blog about our life and our projects. I don't mind being public, I just would prefer that my house itself stay private.

That being said, while we aren't generally able to allow tours of our tiny house we are available for conversations. If anyone finds themselves in the Asheville area and would like to talk with us about our tiny house we would be open to setting up a meeting. 

Q: I want to live in a tiny house but my partner is hesitant. How do you live in a small space with another person? 

A: I think it is very important to recognize that all tiny houses and all relationships are very different. Matt and I chose to build this house together and we both were active participants. If someone is not an active participant or interested in the idea tiny living may not be a good solution for them or for you as a couple. Actually living together in the small space is the easy part. 

Q: How much did your land, house, or solar power system cost?

A: We spent over 10 years saving money to buy our own piece of land. In 2007 we were able to work with a local realtor to find land that would be suitable for our dreams. We have 15 acres in Western North Carolina and we were able to purchase it inexpensively because of the reasons for the sale. The family wanted to subdivide 50 acres. Working with a realtor can really help you narrow down what you want and find deals. Land prices aren't universal and will largely depend on where you're buying and the quality of the parcel.
We began building in 2009 without much previous experience. We had to buy every tool as well as all the materials to build. Including tools and mistakes the entire house cost around $20,000.
We added our current solar power system as we were finishing the build. We worked with the Alt-E store to design a system that would work for our specific needs. The total cost was just over $2,000.

Q: What about your kitchen, bathroom, bedroom...? 

A: You can read about our kitchen here.  

You can read about our bathroom here.

You can read about our loft here.

You can read about why I like having a ladder in my house here.

You can read about our solar power system here.