Every time my daughter gets to choose the show we watch on television she picks some variation of a show where prospective buyers are searching for a tiny house. The programming on HGTV includes shows like Tiny House Living, Tiny House Hunters, and Tiny House Builders. This programming, which seems to run constantly, is reflective of the wave of new consumer interest in bucking the American tradition of “bigger is better.”
The tiny house phenomenon makes sense for the consumer. The initial investment is much smaller than what is needed for a typical single-family detached home, which is particularly appealing to new college graduates with high student debt and retirees on a fixed income. Moreover, the ongoing costs of maintaining the tiny home are comparatively lower as well. The tiny house options also create a much smaller carbon footprint, which is appealing to environmentally-conscious consumers. Therefore, the interest in tiny houses likely will continue to grow at a rapid pace.
But like most new housing trends, the consumer interest is ahead of the land use regulations and municipalities are playing catch up.