Tiny houses are becoming increasingly popular. In this article, we explain what a tiny house is and why it is worth living in one. Furthermore, in this article you will read what you should definitely pay attention to with tiny houses and what alternatives there are.
What is a tiny house?
By a tiny house we generally mean a one-storey house with an area of less than 50 m². Officially, there is no maximum size to which a house can be defined as a tiny house. However, the focus is on keeping the house as small as possible.
The Tiny House movement originated in the US and has spread more widely since the 1970s. This trend is increasingly taking hold in the Netherlands, as more and more people yearn for a life with less consumption.
- What are the advantages of a tiny house?
It is not for nothing that the housing form from the US is now increasingly establishing itself in the Netherlands. Here are some of the main advantages of this type of home over regular real estate:
- Minimalist thinking and connection with nature
This is one of the main reasons why people (want to) live in a tiny house. Due to the smaller living space, there is much less space for objects, changing consumer behaviour. Most tiny houses are found outside big cities. Due to their rural location, minimalist design and an environmentally conscious lifestyle, a certain connection to nature is often felt.
- Good for mother nature
- Easy on the wallet
Buying or building a tiny house is usually much cheaper than buying an ordinary house. Moreover, less financial resources are needed to design the interior. Maintenance of a tiny house is also relatively cheap.
- Extra flexibility
With a tiny house, you create extra flexibility as opposed to a large home. Such a tiny house is quicker to build and furnish and can therefore ideally be used as a temporary flat. Partly due to the lower costs and smaller purchase cost, it is ideally suited as a holiday flat, student flat or second home in the countryside.
The small homes are also ideally suited for start-ups and small businesses that invest little money in office space. Depending on the size and safety measures, so-called mobile Tiny Houses can also be transported in traffic on a truck trailer and thus moved to a new desired location. This keeps you spatially flexible!
- Environmentally friendly move to the tiny house
Sustainability doesn’t just start with living in a new tiny house. Commercially available moving boxes are often not particularly sustainable, take up significant space in the new home after the move, and are therefore unfortunately disposed of without regard for the environment. To make the move sustainable, it is best to use durable moving boxes. These are reusable and can be rented, so they do not take up space in the mini home after the move.
- Building and buying a tiny house
Building a tiny house is usually easier and cheaper than building a regular house. Still, there are a few things to consider when planning so that the new mini house is a great success!
- Gather information
How to build a tiny house can be found in various manuals. Videos, quotes for workshops and building plans can often be downloaded on the internet. It should be noted, however, that the internet refers a lot to American tiny houses. In the Netherlands, different rules apply to the nature, size and building rights of tiny houses. This should definitely be clarified beforehand.
- Cost calculation
The cost of the tiny house can vary greatly. Depending on the size and equipment, costs of around 40,000 euros can be expected. It also depends on whether you build the tiny house yourself, buy a finished one or have one made by experts according to your own specifications.
- Protection from the cold
Especially in winter, it gets cold quickly in a tiny house. Sufficiently insulated walls are the key to a warm living environment, even in the cold months. Either natural insulation materials, such as sheep’s wool, or industrially manufactured materials, such as insulation wool from the hardware store, can be used here. Whatever you choose, however, you should adhere to the requirements of the Energy Saving Ordinance (EnEv).
- Self-sufficient facilities
One of the goals of a tiny house is to be self-sufficient. For this purpose, a photovoltaic system can be installed, and a rainwater harvesting system can be integrated.
Owning a tiny house in the Netherlands sounds simple at first, but there are a few aspects to consider. To transport a tiny house from A to B by road, safety requirements must be met. This requires assessment and approval from bodies such as APK.
Planning permission is also often required for the establishment. This should definitely be clarified in advance so that nothing stands in the way of building or buying the tiny house.
Alternatives to the tiny house
If you don’t want to buy or build a tiny house yourself right away, there are great alternatives that also serve as temporary solutions.
To test whether the tiny house lifestyle is compatible with your desired way of life in the long run, there is the possibility of living in a tiny house on a trial basis for a short time. This has the advantage of saving costs and not having to give up your contents too soon. Staying in a tiny house can also be perfectly combined with a holiday trip to another region. If you left your old flat before moving to the tiny house and haven’t yet found a solution for all the things you no longer need – or at least don’t need for the time being – you can store them in a self-storage facility in the meantime.
Often you long for a life with fewer consumer goods, but don’t want to give up your home to move into a tiny house. To find a middle ground, you can free yourself from objects that have no immediate benefit. A minimalist interior helps to live a more conscious life. You can also implement the sustainability concept in your own home by switching to renewable energy sources, conserving resources and using rainwater to flush toilets or water flowers, for example.
Another alternative to the mini houses are the so-called tiny houses, these are slightly larger and thus offer a good compromise if you cannot or do not want to adapt your standard of living to the tiny houses, but large houses are also excluded.
If you want to move into a tiny house or decorate your own home minimalistically, you usually have to leave a lot of stuff behind. Unfortunately, there are often objects that you don’t want to part with but that get in the way of minimalism. These could be childhood memories, heirlooms or files that are not needed for the time being.
So that these items do not negatively affect life in the tiny house, they can ideally be kept in storage at BOXIE24! We are happy to advise you on 0800-4030-180.