Ranging from houseboats to spherical tree houses, from hermit cottages to tiny trailers, “tiny homes” have become an increasingly appealing concept in the West. What started out as a reaction to the US housing crisis has developed into full-fledged communities and an entire lifestyle – one that more and more are finding works for them thanks to its affordability, convenience, and smaller environmental footprint.
Here in the Philippines most of us are already used to smaller homes or townhouses, or living in compounds that house more than one family. It wouldn’t be a stretch of the imagination (or culture) to see the tiny home trend flourish here, especially when most Yuppies are stuck renting due to the high price of property. But, some of the Millennials may contest, why would we want to settle for a small home when we should be dreaming big? Here are 8 reasons why a Tiny Home is better than your average one:
Have you paused to consider how much it would cost to buy your own land, let alone build your own home? Between the taxes, permits, and construction delays, you’re looking at spending upwards of P5 million, depending on location. A 20ft. shipping container will cost you around P60,000 locally – which you can look at as a pre-made room or as an entire home altogether. With labor more affordable locally than it is in other countries, this means that some of us won’t have to live with our parents until we’re in our late 30’s and can finally afford to move out!
7. Lower living costs
The cheaper cost of building means not having to sell your soul to your job or taking a bonecrushing loan from a bank, but part and parcel of living on your own means that you have to maintain your home and pay all of your bills on time. The cost of doing this is cut almost in half with a smaller home. Less appliances sitting idly will cut out the electricity vampires, and less lights/fans/airconditioners/plumbing means lower charges.
From entire walls that move to open up the house to a patio to walls that slide out into beds, tiny homes are incredibly versatile due to the space restrictions. No inch of space is wasted, and every aspect of the home serves multiple functions.
Tiny homes also have additional appeal to those who are smitten with wanderlust. Depending on the size, they can be hitched to a car and made mobile, allowing a sense of freedom. Tiny home owners aren’t bound by the restrictions of their property, and get to travel with the literal comforts of their own homes.
Because tiny homes consume less resources, they’re also more environmentally friendly. They can feature stoves that double as water heaters, as well as toilets whose tanks double as sinks. Roofs can also be turned into living ones, letting you live out your domestic diva dreams of finally having your own garden without the need for additional space. Most tiny home owners have also taken the leap and opted to run their homes on solar energy, an option that has grown increasingly popular in a tropical climate like the Philippines.
3. More family bonding
Because of the space restrictions, tiny home owners have reported better relationships between them and their partners and between them and their kids. With no back rooms for members to retreat to, living rooms are actually lived in and the quality of conversations improves because no one has to yell to be heard.
2. Learn to live with less
If you’ve ever moved homes, you’ll know what I’m talking about when I say that packing is a pain in the butt. Suddenly you’re drowning in clothes you haven’t used in years, and realize that you have three more of everything than you actually need. Learning to live with less space helps you declutter your life and teaches you to hang on to the things that truly matter, like the vase passed on from your grandmother displayed on a shelf versus a stack of magazines you got on discount. A tiny home teaches you how to live with what is necessary, making you less susceptible to the consumerist culture that media promotes.
1. Cute as hell
Perhaps the tiny home’s greatest appeal is that they range from all-out awesome to kitschy, quaint, and cute. They allow a break from traditional architecture or trends in home facades, allowing you to create a space that not only reflects your aesthetics and personality and is truly your own.
Are you a fan of tiny homes or are planning to move into one? Share your story with us in the comments!