Tiny homes in Houston and Texas are gaining traction in the real estate market and proving themselves to be more than a passing fad. They are legitimate houses that offer some interesting innovations, such as using solar panels to eliminate electric bills. Tiny houses are considered to be part of a “small house movement” that implies a return to a more simple and sustainable life style. The most accepted definition for a tiny house is any house between 300 and 1000 square feet. However, some claim that tiny houses should be 500 square feet or less.
Some tiny homes sport amenities that one wouldn’t think of such as fold-down porches, exposed beams, fireplaces, pop-up flatscreen TVs, built-in dog kennels with collapsible food and water bowls, fold-up desks and tables, small hot tubs, and much more. One tiny home, called a “Mini Yacht”, is designed to float on water with the ability to motor around.
Tiny houses can be built on wheels, much like a travel trailer, and moved from location to location. Other tiny houses are assembled on site from a “kit” supplied by the manufacturer. One of the more interesting entrepreneurs that has entered this growing market is Tammy Berry of Happy Shacks of Texas.
Ms. Berry is developing small “clusters” of these tiny homes to house some of American’s veterans in Texas. Her plans also include locating some of these tiny homes in Alaska and to rent them out as vacation homes via Airbnb.
The Happy Shacks of Texas brochure promotes three distinct differences that illustrate the advantage of her tiny homes over standard home construction. The differences are quoted directly below.
- Horizontally stacked logs will always capitalize on Gravity
- Ripple Crafting (double tongue-and-groove), which creates maximum surface friction, extends the entire run of every 2 3/4 inch thick board
- Overlapping, interlocking corners (Lincoln Log-style) tie everything together*
*Source: Happy Shacks of Texas, Log Homes and Structures
Obviously tiny homes in Houston have lower prices. The smallest of the tiny homes are generally priced in the $30-$40,000 range. In addition to the lower price and lower cost of living, the simpler lifestyle and modest impact on the environment are strong motivators for tiny home residents.