For my birthday a few weeks ago, I convinced my husband to try out Tiny House Living for a weekend. We rented a place on Airbnb that someone just built. To be fully transparent, it was brand new and luxury meaning it had a nice, large bathroom, a brand new, well-equipped kitchen and lots of space for us to move around. It was also fully connected with internet. It wasn't off the grid living, it was luxury tiny house living for a weekend.
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I have to say though that the place was probably as big as our first apartment. It was nicely laid out and I think that's what you have to consider when you build your own tiny home, really figure out what you need so that you can design in with what you will use. Let's first start with the bathroom. It was pretty huge, which was very nice, but if you want to maximize space, I probably would cut down the size and figure out how and where to add a dual washer and dryer combo. Having a washer and dryers has also been very important to me as I don't want to be hauling my laundry to a laundry mat every week or so. I absolutely loved the kitchen in this house. It was functional and well laid out. It had a full fridge and stove/oven. The unique thing they did was take one of those European models so it didn't look too big in the space, but still provided you the appliances that you needed. The counter doubled as a prep counter and desk area for working too. It overlooked the window which was nice.
The appeal of the tiny house to me is the fact that it's minimal. It doesn't have a lot of stuff. This particular house only had two of everything. Two sets of dishes, utensils, glasses so The tiny house had a loft bedroom with a Queen size bed. One of the things I noticed was the lack of storage for the bedroom, specifically a closet. I think that's something to be thinking about if/when building out your own is really think about functional storage. Of course, part of the point and appeal of a tiny house is to live minimally and cut down your belongings, but we still need a few things especially for us folks that live in the Northeast with 4 seasons. Stuff and clutter is what also makes any space much smaller that it actually is so while this tiny house was beautiful for the weekend, it would need some optimization when stuff gets in the picture. I did absolutely love the fact that it only heated by a small stove. Such a small footprint in the grand scheme of things.
The tiny house we stayed at was part of a working farm. Since we went during the winter, the farm are was bare, but the views were still nice with snow. The house looks small, but looks really are deceiving because when you walk in, it felt so spacious. I love that we had the opportunity to try it out. We enjoyed a weekend in our own space. We enjoyed a weekend hiking around the grounds. We enjoyed being out because we knew we would be coming home to this warm and cozy place.
While I won't be building my own tiny home for a while, it's nice to get a sense of how this could work in the future for us or for a potential investment properly. The couple that rented this place clearly had the money and space to do so, so it's nice to have that idea seeded in in your mind. My husband who up until that point would never have wanted to stay in a tiny house was surprised and I think it cleared some of his misconceptions of tiny house living, but more importantly, it opened his eyes to the potential. I totally would recommend an experiment like this so you can get a sense of what could work for you in the future. Plus, I think it's absolutely fun to stay in a place like this. No other guests. Just your own space.
I also just want to recognize that in other parts of the world, tiny houses are just a fact of life. They are neither trendy or cool, but just the way things are. I do like there is a movement towards smaller living in the U.S. which ultimately means less cost, less footprint and hopefully more time to really enjoy life.