The Tiny House Movement

There is a show on HGTV called Tiny House Hunters.  It is very similar to House Hunters, except the people are looking for a tiny house.

They have been running new episodes and I’ve been able to catch some of them.  Despite not wanting a tiny house myself, there is something fascinating about watching it and trying to figure out some of the thinking behind the people looking for tiny houses.

(I wonder if some people view libertarians this way.  I can just imagine someone saying, “I am not a libertarian, but I am fascinated by them and what is going on inside their heads.”)

I don’t know if there is an exact definition for making something a tiny house.  I’d say it is typically under 600 square feet, but usually even smaller than this.  You could rent a studio apartment in New York City for a couple of thousand dollars per month, but that probably wouldn’t be considered a tiny house because it is in a big building with no yard.

I have a family, so a tiny house wouldn’t work for us.  If I were single and living alone, I’m still not sure it would be for me.  But I do understand the attraction of it for some.

You don’t have to be a libertarian to understand that the middle class is suffering in America (and elsewhere).  You may have to be a libertarian to understand the reason why people are struggling, which is mostly due to massive government spending, central bank inflation, and government regulation.  Government at all levels spends more per household than the median household income.

In many ways, we are much better off than ever before, especially in terms of technology.  We have our smartphones, which are handheld computers that we get to carry everywhere with us.  But in terms of food, shelter, medical care (especially medical care), and a few other basic needs, it is in many ways more difficult today than it was 30 years ago.

I hear one of the main motivations for people buying a tiny house is to not have a mortgage payment.  They say they will be more free to travel around and still save a little money.

I believe having a tiny house also forces you to declutter.  It means you are forced to not accumulate junk.  Americans know how to accumulate a lot of stuff, so a tiny house forces some simplicity on you.

I have also seen some who want a house on wheels that can be moved.  Even this you could relate to today’s economy because it allows you to have a house but be flexible in finding work anywhere in the country (not including Hawaii).

The tiny house movement is still only being explored by a tiny percentage of the population.  Most Americans want their space.

Still, I think it may be the start of a trend for at least some Americans in trying to simplify life and live debt free, or at least close to debt free.  I think there are ways to do this without buying a tiny house, but it is still encouraging.

The only thing that really doesn’t make sense to me is that, in some episodes, I have seen people buying tiny houses for $60,000, or $80,000, or even $100,000.  For me, this basically defeats the purpose.

Even in some big cities in the U.S., you can buy a one or two-bedroom condo for less than $100,000 and you will get more indoor space.  That also includes the price of the land, which some tiny house buyers have to pay for if they don’t already have an arrangement set up.

If you haven’t seen the show, watch a few episodes of Tiny House Hunters if you get the opportunity.  The lifestyle isn’t for me, but I can see the appeal for others.  I just wonder if the excitement wears off quickly or if the people actually stay in these tiny houses for several years.  Maybe the show will do a follow-up at a later time.

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