The Tiny House Movement has well and truly reached Australia with a number of Australians building and living in their own Tiny Houses, but what is all the fuss about? What is so great about a small house on wheels and why would someone move from a perfectly good house into a shoe box?
Since the time of the industrial revolution around the world our daily lives in the western world have become and continue to become more and more stressful. You ask someone in casual conversation, “hows your day going” and the standard response today is “busy”, not “good thanks. How about yours?”. We have created an ever increasing number of distractions which continue to pull us away from the true purpose of our existence on this planet and prevent us from living in the present moment, connecting with our loved ones, friends and acquaintances and ultimately living a life of presence and purpose.
Here are just a few of the reasons why living in a Tiny House has massive appeal for many people:
1. Very little or no debt
Why do we chain ourselves to a 25 to 30 year mortgage? And why do we then decide several years later that we actually would like a bigger home with more debt?? Why do we continue on this path for our whole lives hoping that someday it will pay off and we will have a nice little “nest egg” to retire with? It may have worked in the past but will it work in the future? With the global uncertainty around the world and the subsequent slowing down of most economies in the developed world, coupled with the fact that the majority of the worlds population is aging, it is becoming more likely that we wont see the same returns on property over the next 50 years.
Having a debt which you owe to a lending institution of some sort spread over 25 to 30 years creates massive mental baggage and quite often worry that people carry around with them for their whole life. As the pressure and worry of our debts is only subtle and in the background, we quite often don’t have the urgency to do something about it. Just imagine for a minute what it would feel like to have no mortgage, no monthly payment, no financial worries and certainty that no matter what happened in the economy or with interest rates it wasn’t going to effect you!
According to the latest figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics the median price in Sydney is now $760,000. If we were to buy a property at that price we would need at least a 20% deposit which would equate to $152,000. For less than half of this you could build your own Tiny House and have more than $80,000 in cash in the bank left over. All the while you will still have a beautiful home with all of the creature comforts that we all appreciate and have no financial stress to boot.
According to Ryan at The Tiny Life, 68% of Tiny House owners have no mortgage, compared to just 29.3% of all US homeowners.
Thousands of people around the world are beginning to realise this and this is just one of the very compelling reasons why the Tiny House Movement is gaining traction in Australia.
2. More free time
As a flow on effect of having very little or no debt you will then have the option of whether you still wish to continue to work 40 hours or more a week. If you don’t love your job like the majority of people then you could cut down your hours significantly and then spend your free time doing the things you love. Just imagine having an extra day or two every week free to spend the time however you choose. What would you do?
3. Less worries
Another great benefit and arguably the greatest benefit of living in a Tiny House is less worries. There are typically many worries in our lives but the main ones usually stem from our high living costs, our work/career and running a household. Just think about these three for a minute and think how they may be causing worry in your life.
Making the decision to live in a Tiny House will quite often directly impact all three of these areas of worry in a positive way. The minute we move into a Tiny House our living costs such as power, water and gas are dramatically reduced thus creating less worry about bills. Our work or career is also immediately impacted as we can now choose to work less hours which reduces worry. Last but not least is the effect on worry of running a household. To run a Tiny House is much easier than a traditional home. Previously you may have spent a couple of hours every week cleaning and maintaining your house whereas now it takes you 20 minutes a week. That will certainly enable less worry.
4. Environmental responsibility
By building or buying a Tiny House you are also significantly reducing your environmental impact. Tiny Houses use a lot less timber and construction materials to build and create less waste during the building process. Once they are built they also require a lot less energy to heat and cool them as the internal space is so small and usually well insulated. A lot of Tiny House owners also choose to use a lot of recycled and reclaimed materials which further decreases your impact on the environment. There are salvage yards and building material recycling companies all around Australia. Here’s a list to get you started:
5. Tiny Bills
According to Tumbleweed Tiny Houses in the USA, the average Tiny House owner pays between $10 – $35 per month on utilities. I don’t know about you but I currently pay about $150 a month on utilities. That’s a saving of up to $1,680 a year!
Aside from ongoing utilities, maintenance of a Tiny House is also much less than a regular home given that it is much smaller.
6. Live Anywhere
As most Tiny Houses are on a trailer it gives you the freedom and flexibility to live wherever you want. All you have to do is find someone who is happy for you to park on their land(possibly for a small fee) and you have a home. If you decide at any stage that you would like to live somewhere else, near or far, you can quite simply hook your Tiny House Trailer up to your car or 4 x 4 and off you go. No more stressful weeks spent packing boxes and paying ridiculous removalists fees to move house!
Some people don’t like the idea of renting land from somebody else or parking on a friends property which is also fine too. There are many Tiny House owners who still opt to buy a piece of land to call home. There is no wrong or right way, you just have to do what gives you peace of mind and happiness.
7. Build Yourself
If you are a bit of a handy man or handy woman you have the option to build your Tiny House with your own hands. By being fully involved in the project you can make sure that your new Tiny House has everything that you want. There is also no greater sense of satisfaction than that gained from building your own beautiful little home. As an added benefit you will also save yourself a lot of money by being hands on and doing the majority of the work yourself.
According to The Tiny Life, the average Tiny House built by the owner in the US costs $23,000 USD. This equates to around $31,000 Australian Dollars. With the median price of property in Sydney now at $760,000 you would need to borrow around $608,000 if you had a 20% deposit. If this $608,000 mortgage was taken out over a 30 year period at an average of 5%(which is very unlikely to stay this low), your total costs would equate to $1,174,996.80. Thats almost $1.2 million dollars for an average home in Sydney. $31,000 or $1.2 million? I know what I am choosing!
If you enjoyed this article please let us know and help us spread the word by sharing with your loved ones. If you need help with any part of designing and building your Tiny House, please get in contact with me at [email protected]. I would love to help!
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