How to Get Involved with the Tiny House Movement – Part I

Robert J. Kobet

The tiny house movement is growing, as evidenced by the ever increasing number of blogs, websites, publications and books dedicated to the subject.  Given the diverse demographic of tiny home advocates and stakeholders, I am interested in how people get involved initially, and what they do to pursue their tiny house dreams and aspirations.  I recently read a July 2016 article by Erin Doman titled, 9 Useful Resources for Tiny House Living for Compact Appliance that addresses that very question.  http://bit.ly/2dbackw (@CA_appliance. “9 Useful Resources for Tiny House Living – Compact Appliance.” Compact Appliance. N.p., 07 Sept. 2016. Web. 04 Oct. 2016.)  Much of what Erin writes reflects how my colleagues at 84 Lumber and GreenEdge Supply feel about their role in the tiny house movement, so I believe it is worth reflecting on.  My comments are in italics.

According to Erin, if you are thinking about designing your own tiny home or you recently moved into a tiny house, you need to know what resources there are that can help you succeed.  Here are three great resources for future tiny house dwellers to take advantage of:

  1. Go to Workshops

It is always useful to get valuable information directly from people with expertise on the subject of living in a tiny home.  This includes both workshop leaders and other workshop attendees.  Workshops can teach anything, so be careful to choose workshops that best meet your needs and interests.

                If you already live in a tiny house, you should still consider attending workshops dedicated to this lifestyle.  These workshops can provide useful tips for organizing in small spaces and keeping your energy expenses low, as well as other useful skills.  And, I believe your lessons learned may be very helpful to your fellow workshop attendees.  Check around the web and with others in your local tiny house community for opportunities to join one of these workshop groups.

    

Go to workshopssponsored by and / or having field trips to tiny house communities

  1. Join a Tiny House Community

Few experiences can give you the kind of information you can gain by being actively involved with a tiny house community.  There are two types of communities you could join:

  • Online: You could find an online forum where people who live in tiny homes give each other advice. There are numerous small living forums on the Internet.  I suggest trying to find a group that shares one or more of your interests.  For instance, if you search online using keywords like “Tiny houses for veterans” you may be able to combine one or more of your interests.
  • Local: You could live in a community made up of tiny homes. Getting involved with a local tiny house community ensures you don’t have to worry about local laws not allowing tiny homes.  Some tiny house communities hold local meet-ups, where tiny house enthusiasts can learn about the movement.  To find a local meet-up in your area, check here.
  1. Utilize House Design Resources

Once you’re at the stage where you are preparing to build, you have to think about your design.  There are a lot of resources you can use to actually make your own design.  In order to do this, you’ll have to:

  • Get educated about tiny house design. This can be as simple as speaking with a design professional or reviewing a number of tiny house design resources that explain the design process.  One of Erin’s favorites is Tiny House Floor Plans: Over 200 Interior Designs for Tiny Houses by Michael Janzen.  84 Lumber and GreenEdge Supply have 4 tiny house models for you to choose from.  84tinyliving.com
  • Research building plans that use space efficiently and learn about creative storage solutions for small living. As in any house design, the tiny house industry now is replete with tiny house designs that can be viewed online or purchased.  So, if you don’t feel up to making your own design, there are other numerous resources available.  However, your best and safest bet will still be to work with an expert.  84 Lumber’s tiny house building plans have been architecturally drawn and stamped off by an engineer.  You can purchase them at 84tinyliving.com

84 Lumber and GreenEdge Supply share your interest in tiny houses.  84 Lumber and GreenEdge Supply offer several tiny houses on wheels at www.84tinyliving.com and have the in house expertise and experience to help you with all of your healthy, tiny living questions.  Visit us online at www.greenedgesupply.com or tour our tiny house models on display in Eighty Four, PA and let us help you live a healthier, greener life.

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