The Unexpected Costs of Living in a Really Small House

Are you planning to live in a tiny house? Well, you should know about several hidden costs, because they will significantly eat into the savings you plan to make. Many people who have made the choice to downsize their homes do it because it allows them to move closer to their families. Furthermore, they can transfer some of the saved money to other things they consider more valuable than a big living space.

A small home typically involves living in a space of less than 400 square feet, and it can be mobile or stationary. If you have chosen to downsize your living space as cost saving measure, knowing which new costs you will incur, helps you to know how much you are actually saving. In that regard, we have chosen to write this list of unexpected costs of living in a Tiny House.

Paying for Storage Space

A tiny house requires that you only use its living space for stuff that you cannot do without such as a bed, cooking space, and washroom. Furthermore, you will be forced to buy items from the grocery store in small packages, which will cost you more. For example, a jumbo package of say 60 rolls will costs you less than the smallest package, in terms of what you per roll. While the difference might seem insignificant, the costs add up quickly when you do the math at the end of your financial year.

More Grocery Trips

Having to buy items in small packages means you will be making more shopping trips than when you used to buy your stuff in bulk. Most people living in small houses have to shop at least once a week. Therefore, apart from losing money in buying the more expensive smaller packages, you will also be spending more in gas bills and of course time. Again, the extra time and gas bill might seem insignificant on a single trip, but they actually add up quickly, making your life more expensive and busy than you had earlier planned.

Hosting Guests

Whether they are family members or friends, you will find that you need to host several people during holidays. You cannot do that if you live in a tiny house, your only option is to rent a space and host your party there. Furthermore, you may need to hire a catering service since you tiny home may not have all the kitchen accessories and appliances for cooking a nice meal for a group of say 7 to 15 people. Those are costs that most people living in large houses don’t have to worry about when hosting parties.

Buy or Rent a Lot

You need a place to park your tiny house, and you cannot park it on another person’s property. The only option left is for you to rent or lease a parking lot. Unless you already have a title in hand, you will find that your renting costs still add up quickly after a couple of months. Therefore, you have to research about parking spaces in your area, and find out how safe cheaper ones are for those using them for tiny houses.

Zoning Laws

Every local authority has its own zoning laws, inspections laws, and related fees. Those regulations will affect where you can park your tiny home, and where you cannot park it even if there is some parking space. Rural areas tend to be cheap in terms of cost of parking space but you will pay more when connecting to utility grids. Other tiny home users choose to invest in solar panels instead, which still require a higher initial investment.

Homeowner’s Insurance

There are several challenges when it comes to insuring a tiny home. Not that they are not insurable, but the terms of the insurance cover dictate that you can only get a cover for you home if it was built by a licensed professional, irrespective of their size. If yours was a DIY project, you need to get it certified by the National Organization of Alternative Housing (NOAH).

Getting the NOAH certification will make it a little easier to get a cover from some insurers, and therefore make your home compliant with laws governing construction and safety of living spaces. Furthermore, if your tiny home is mobile, make sure that the builder is RV certified, and you get an RV certification. There are fees you pay to get those certifications and the insurance cover, which you should include in your tiny house’s running costs.

We hope that you have found this guide on hidden costs for your tiny house to be informative and helpful. We wish you the best as you execute your plans to live on a budget lifestyle, and invest in more stuff that matter more to you.


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