The whole world is my living room
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John Harper
(johnnyh88) - M

Locale: The SouthWest
The whole world is my living room on 11/26/2013 18:37:16 MST Print View

Another story about tiny houses:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2512330/Colorado-couple-build-dream-home-124-square-feet.html

"The world gets a lot bigger when you're living small because I can afford to do a lot more things now in terms of cash and time. The whole world is my living room."

I thought this would appeal to many of you out there. I certainly agree that simplifying your life at home lets you get outside more. And simplifying/prioritzing your financials lets you do more.

Part of me wonders, though, why not just buy an RV? And where do they store all their tools? :)

Angus A.
(mangus7175) - F

Locale: http://theshadedtrail.blogspot.com
Re: The whole world is my living room on 11/26/2013 18:52:35 MST Print View

Definitely something I would do if I didn't have any kids. This idea seems more feasible, in my opinion, with someone who is either single or partnered with no kids...or a retirement plan?

I agree, what's wrong with just an RV? Maybe they wanted it to "feel" like a conventional home?

Ian B.
(IDBLOOM) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Re: Re: The whole world is my living room on 12/01/2013 21:24:25 MST Print View

I follow Kirsten Dirksen's channel on YouTube and subscribe to the Tiny House blog; I really enjoy reading stories like these.

"Maybe they wanted it to "feel" like a conventional home?"

I'd say yes or maybe just the pride of building it from scratch. For me, the largest benefit of building it on a trailer is the ability to circumvent housing code. I like the idea that I can run my lights and most of my appliances off of DC which would be better for solar off grid living than losing some efficiency by converting everything to 110v.

I really like this story:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DsVxgOjNLbA

Edited by IDBLOOM on 12/01/2013 23:40:01 MST.

Leigh Baker
(leighb) - F

Locale: Northeast Texas Pineywoods
re:"The whole world is my living room" on 12/02/2013 05:50:30 MST Print View

@Ian, I LOVE that, and I love her philosophy on "stuff". Think what the world would be like if more people felt that way! Thanks for sharing.

Ian B.
(IDBLOOM) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Re: re:"The whole world is my living room" on 12/02/2013 08:32:02 MST Print View

Glad you liked it Leigh. As the OP suggests, there are some similarities of mindset between UL backpacking and the Tiny House movement. Kirsten's channel is well worth subscribing to.

Roger Dodger
(RogerDodger) - F

Locale: Wess Siide
Re: The whole world is my living room on 12/02/2013 08:50:36 MST Print View

It's probably because it's Monday and I'm grumpy at work, but my crabby claws are out.

Building codes are there for a reason, safety. circumventing them makes them feel like Robin Hood or Steven Seagal "Above The Law" or Judge Dred "I Am the law"

where's the safety?
when the strong hurricane winds pick up suddenly, and the tiny house is flying - with residents inside.

How about when a fire happens because of an electrical shortcut, or a stove/candle/match?
where's the emergency exit? will they burn inside?

How about smoke inhalation? where are the smoke detectors and the carbon monoxide sensors?

Does the place have proper ventilation when all the windows are closed on a cold night?

On the superficial side, the common problem is bathroom duty #2, then your clothes and your food and pillow will smell like yesterday's dinner gasses from the colon.

House on a trailer... not a novel concept, it's a toolshed from Home Depot.

All the miniature appliances have been around for a long time from the Japanese lifestyle as well as the live-aboard boats.

I'm trying really hard not to overlap on the homeless gypsy 'traveler' trailer lifestyle.

"has a composting toilet. There is no running water so the couple shower at the gym."
what they don't say is that after their neighbor goes to work, they sneak into his yard to wash up with his garden hose, and urinate in his yard. Compost toilet... right.

with small spaces, no storage space for a big wardrobe, so the few clothes they have must be washed very frequently. No Washer/dryer? wash in the sink or go to the laundromat twice a week? Most Americans do laundry once a week, with about 1 medium sized laundry basket per person per week.

just like jetski wave runners on a trailer bed, how do you prevent a stranger with a truck from stealing/towing your home away...?


I don't see where they will put the Billiards pool table.

Edited by RogerDodger on 12/02/2013 09:09:02 MST.

John S.
(jshann) - F
Re: Re: The whole world is my living room on 12/02/2013 09:04:08 MST Print View

You can buy composting toilets for the home.

Roger Dodger
(RogerDodger) - F

Locale: Wess Siide
Re: Re: Re: The whole world is my living room on 12/02/2013 09:12:26 MST Print View

Compost toilet

it's basically a fancy cat litter box.

At the trailhead near my fav mountain, there's an outhouse bathroom dry pit toilet, the stench is strong half a mile away. I guarantee you, these guys #1 & #2 outside the shed, because they sleep in the loft right next to pit toilet exhaust vent.

It's all eco on the web, but when that methane factory rolls in your neighborhood or by a restaurant, everyone will notice that "They've arrived."

I think Mythbusters did an episode about a construction crew worker who lit a cigarette inside a ripe porto-potty filled with methane gas... I don't remember how it ended...

Edited by RogerDodger on 12/02/2013 09:19:31 MST.

Bily Ray
(rosyfinch) - M

Locale: the mountains
Re: Re: Re: The whole world is my living room on 12/02/2013 09:25:14 MST Print View

I'd need two... one to live in and one for all my outdoor gear :)

er... maybe two for my outdoor gear!

Billy

Ian B.
(IDBLOOM) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Re: Re: The whole world is my living room on 12/02/2013 09:30:20 MST Print View

Rodger,

If you like, I can put you in touch with Tom Cruise... apparently he can help you with whatever is going on here.

These tiny homes can be wired like an RV or traditional home. Either way is perfectly safe if done correctly.

As always, your input is appreciated and I can't wait to read more of your opinions on the topic.

Have a super duper day sunshine.

Roger Dodger
(RogerDodger) - F

Locale: Wess Siide
Re: Re: Re: The whole world is my living room on 12/02/2013 09:33:03 MST Print View

Ian,
You are my sunshine
:)

Ian B.
(IDBLOOM) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Re: Re: Re: The whole world is my living room on 12/02/2013 09:38:38 MST Print View

"You can buy composting toilets for the home."

The Sun Mar composting toilets look pretty slick. I've looked at a couple but if I were to build one of these, I'd probably opt for the 12v version. My largest concern would be the footprint of the actual unit and then not being able to utilize the entire bathroom as a wet bath which would make it twice as big.

I followed the build of a family who just used a box and some sawdust and according to them, they didn't suffer from odor problems. I personally wouldn't use that compost on vegetables but it'd be fine for trees and flowers.

http://humanurehandbook.com/humanure_toilet.html

Ian B.
(IDBLOOM) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Re: Re: Re: Re: The whole world is my living room on 12/02/2013 09:39:21 MST Print View

"Ian,
You are my sunshine
:)"

I feel a bromance forming. Lucky me!

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Re: The whole world is my living room on 12/02/2013 09:42:37 MST Print View

"It's probably because it's Monday and I'm grumpy at work, but my crabby claws are out."

Awww, Dodge, here's one for your crabby little self: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UGt5H3_ygdQ

Feel better now?

Roger Dodger
(RogerDodger) - F

Locale: Wess Siide
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: The whole world is my living room on 12/02/2013 09:44:17 MST Print View

On the "Humanure" second life as fertilizer, this is very subjective to the diet/food consumed.

paleo, vegan, carnivores, curry eaters, garlic lovers, coffee drinkers... all they have their own special aroma. but please! no asparagus :) hahaha

input = output :)

Edited by RogerDodger on 12/02/2013 09:47:17 MST.

Roger Dodger
(RogerDodger) - F

Locale: Wess Siide
Re: Re: Re: The whole world is my living room on 12/02/2013 09:45:42 MST Print View

@Doug

:)

HK Newman
(hknewman) - MLife

Locale: Western US
Re: The whole world is my living room on 12/02/2013 09:56:14 MST Print View

Great for them but I'd need a little more square footage for guests during football season (plus a larger guest bath that's capable of handling the typical American "load" - just too many friends and family get-togethers where the host needs to hunt for the plunger/snake/etc... In terms of sewage and composting toilet, I saw an article on eco-homes on treehugger.com which questioned why are we paying to have the modern sewage system to haul it when it's probably valuable enough to sell. Should an interesting entry into "Gear Swap" .. but more about modern agribusiness can use these "raw materials" after various treatments. Think most sewage services treat the "sludge" and sell it anyways.

John S.
(jshann) - F
Re: Re: The whole world is my living room on 12/02/2013 09:57:17 MST Print View

You have a point about safety as it relates to building code. I won't be surprised when communities begin to get more restrictive in attempts to curb the tiny house movement. They could easily change the requirements and cause large problems for those living on flat bed trailers.

Edited by jshann on 12/02/2013 09:57:51 MST.

Roger Dodger
(RogerDodger) - F

Locale: Wess Siide
Re: Re: The whole world is my living room on 12/02/2013 10:09:53 MST Print View

@HK Newman

in 1993, Jack-in-The-Box (burger chain on the west coast) got in trouble when their customers were dying of e.Coli that was in the raw uncooked onions on the burgers. At first they were troubleshooting cross contamination of employees not washing their hands. Then they thought it was the undercooked pseudo-meat. Turned out it was the organic onions.

My memory is weak, but the onions were farmed in the country of Mexico (not the US State or city) and they were irrigated with partially treated and raw sewage. So the e.Coli made its way into the soil, and since Onions are an underground bulb, the onion roots sucked in the e.Coli from the eco sewage fertilizer and irrigation.

It didn't happen immediately, it took some time for build up and a few failsafes to... fail.

As the old saying goes... don't SH8T where you eat.

Ian B.
(IDBLOOM) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Re: Re: Re: The whole world is my living room on 12/02/2013 10:22:43 MST Print View

"You have a point about safety as it relates to building code."

This reminds me of the original Geo Metro, a car which was advertised under the old EPA guidelines to achieve 55mpg. I very much doubt you could build that car today as it wouldn't meet current safety requirements but I don't see how it's more dangerous than a motorcycle which is completely legal to ride down the highway.

Safety is always a good thing. As far as these houses go, one of the primary reasons that many of them are built on a trailer is so it will be treated like an RV instead of a conventional house. So what issues would these houses have that you wouldn't encounter in an RV? My understanding, and it's entirely possible I'm dead wrong, is that there are certain standards RVs are encouraged to comply with but there isn't an RV specific building code per se.

So the two sides of this coin as I see it 1) countless people live in park models and every kind of RV and never have a problem, and 2) when RVs burn, they burn quick.

I think it's easier to make a tiny home more fire resistant than an RV. For starters, you can add fire breaks in the walls and if you don't plan on moving it or are handy with mud, you can use dry wall.

As I previously mentioned, for going solar, I like the idea that I can run my LED lights off of 12v DC in this scenario instead of having to run all of my juice through an inverter to run it off of 110v AC thereby losing efficiency. If I wasn't planning on using solar panels, I wouldn't even bother and would just wire everything to conventional building code.

All of the mini houses I've looked at online seem to have plenty of windows so egress during a fire doesn't seem to be an issue.

If you don't put up a fire/CO alarm, you're obviously trying to become a future Darwin award.