During the heydays of the real estate bubbles, McMansions popped up everywhere. The mantra seemed to be, “build (them big), and they will come.” Then after the bubble popped, McMansions became the subject of public and private ire. Fine, we all say that we don’t want McMansions. But what’s the smallest you will go? And keep in mind, one person’s McMansion is another person’s cottage.
Tiny Houses: Just how small is small?
Tammy Strobel, a minimalist blogger at Rowdy Kittens, is building a small house. And by small, I mean, really small) Her 150-sq. ft. house-on-wheels will cost an estimated $35,000. The low-cost comes from a small structure – less than 1/10 the size of an average American home, but mostly I assume it comes from the lack of land. If you are interested in building or commissioning a home like this, check out these great resources: Tumbleweed Tiny Houses, Tiny House Blog, Tiny House Design, and Design Boom’s feature on small houses.
While I’ve always had fairly conventional real estate aspirations, it’s cool to see people pursuing a different path. I don’t think the tiny house movement is for me: I don’t need or want a McMansion, but my idea of small is 700 sq. ft., not 150. Our apartment right now is a very spacious 1-bedroom, and sometimes I feel like I can do with 2/3 of the size – and I will GLADLY do so for 2/3 of the rent! My ideal home would be probably a 3 bedroom, 2-bathroom home in a nicely-appointed 1,000 sq. ft. Craftsman bungalow or Spanish-style home. Big enough to not feel cramped, small enough to be affordable (I hope). The second bedroom can be a library – aka my dream room. If we have a kid, I’d like the third bedroom. I’d also like a one-story home, which will add to the square footage.