The Real Costs of Tiny Homes
July 11, 2017
The tiny home movement—homes that often fall within the 100- to 400-square-foot range—is becoming more trendy as owners are drawn to the homes’ minimalism and sliced costs. But buyers may not want to count on cutting their savings by purchasing a tiny home.
A tiny home usually has more costs up front. If you build it yourself, the average cost is about $23,000, according to The Tiny Life. This usually doesn’t include the land price, so buyers will need to pay more to purchase a plot of land or lease land for the home. Additionally, about 68 percent of tiny home owners don’t have a mortgage at all, compared to just 29.3 percent of buyers of traditional homes.
Tiny-home living promotes less spending on utilities as an added perk, but buyers will need to watch those upfront payments as well. Tiny homes often use alternate forms of energy, such as propane, solar energy, or composting. Even for a tiny house, a solar-power system can cost about $8,000, according to The Financial Times.
After these initial costs, tiny homes can still be an affordable option for homeowners who wish to downsize and make a smaller footprint. Less square footage may allow owners to splurge on high-quality, pricier materials.
“In a tiny home, you’re able to use expensive, quality material that you may not have been able to use in a bigger home,” Ethan Waldman, a tiny home owner, told The Financial Times. “But because of the scale of the house, these rich materials were affordable.”
Source: “Tiny House Living: How Much Money Can You Really Save?” CheatSheet.com (July 11, 2017)
Updated: May 14, 2021