In an age where the American Dream is to own more, small houses are not as common as they once were. But tiny houses do exist, and some of them may be smaller than you thought was possible. From a
home that can be pulled behind a bicycle to homes built for their ecological features, the smallest houses in America require careful planning and an eye for detail. Note that the smallest of these
designs may not include restroom facilities, but they have everything else, and since the smaller ones are designed to be mobile, you can use restrooms and showers at campgrounds and other stops
along the way.
Dee Williams’ Tiny
Dee Williams decided to downsize, and did it in a very big way. The result was an 84 square
foot house that contains a living and sleeping area along with some limited extras. The sleeping loft is above the living area, and the home even has a kitchen counter and storage compartments.
Her monthly household bills consist of about $8 for heating costs.
Paul Elkins took his home on the road with a mobile home design that rides
behind his bicycle. He gets his electrical power from a wind turbine and uses solar power for cooking and heating. This compact design utilizes the same space for multiple functions, but it has
everything a single person needs for living.
Sun Dog Cob House
The Sun Dog School of Natural Building teaches people how to build small, sustainable homes. The Cob house is primarily made from straw and
mud, but also incorporates modern design techniques. Other features that can be used in home building include earthen floors, stone ovens and living roof designs which keep the home cool by using
plants and soil.
Tiny House on Wheels
This home is 160 square feet in size, features bamboo flooring and has cedar siding. The kitchen is powered using 110 AC power. The
roof is double insulated for more effective heating and cooling and a complete gutter system is included. Plumbing was omitted to avoid zoning concerns, and the home is for sale at a modest price
The Spite House
This home was built in in 1830 in Alexandria, Virginia. It measures 7 feet wide and a total of 320 square
feet. Built by closing in alley and using the exterior walls of the two adjacent buildings as the interior walls for this home, the Spite House has all of the modern conveniences of home and
includes an outdoor patio-garden that is, like the home, only 7 feet wide.
Shipping Container Homes
These remarkable homes can be as small as a single shipping container or as large and luxurious as you can afford. For tiny homes, furniture is
designed to serve double and triple uses, folding into and out of walls, floors and ceilings. Another usage for shipping containers is design modular rooms which can be inserted into specially cut
Houseboats, by and large, are tiny homes. This one is less than 500 square feet, uses solar power to provide 12 volt electricity to
the appliances, and includes a kitchen and dining area. Cooking is done on a 2 burner gas stove and the home is supported on recycled 55 gallon drums. Complete with a lower deck and roof access,
this is a small home with the potential to go anywhere, either by water or pulled by trailer to a launching facility.