A common question that people have when planning the construction of their tiny house is how tall and wide it can be built. Let’s take a look at the maximum dimensions you can do if you plan to move your tiny house on roads.
How tall and wide can I build a tiny house?
The length of the house can stretch to 65 feet long including the towing vehicle. However, many tiny houses are built no taller than 14 feet and no wider than 9 feet to make them easier to move on the road.
While it may not seem like a very comfortable way to live, you would be surprised by what these tiny houses can offer.
Best of all, constructing your own tiny home is a great way to showcase creativity while customizing it to your exact needs. There are many unseen factors that go into designing your perfect tiny home.
Here is everything you need to know about keeping it authentic when converting to a smaller scale lifestyle.
What Factors go into the Dimensions of Tiny Houses?
While it may seem like constructing and designing a tiny home can have liberties, the dimensions always tend to be the same. There are many different factors to consider when planning out the perfect construction.
Here are some things to keep in mind:
Transportation (on the road)
Tiny houses are not always built where they stand. Due to the delicate style of design, most homes are built off-site which means that will need to be transported on the roads. The specific dimensions of a tiny home were created so that these houses can be moved with the use of semi-trailer.
The reason why the length of tiny homes seems so off-scale is that you need to factor in the length of the towing vehicle itself.
A major perk to owning a tiny home is that you won’t need to conform to traditional home lot sizes. However, there will be certain rules to follow.
Typically, you will find tiny houses located on lots ranging from .5 to 1.5 acres.
The larger the lot, the more opportunities for outdoor living space as well as amenities like gardens or farm life.
One major thing to factor in when scaling your tine home is what type of zoning permits you will need to file. This will vary depending on where you live.
According to Curbed Magazine, less than a dozen cities actual cite tiny homes in regulation handbooks. This means that unless you live in these areas, you will have to construct your plan in accordance with local law.
Perhaps the most important thing to consider when planning the dimensions for your tiny home is how that home will work for you. This will all depend on the size of your family as well as what the family needs to gain from a tiny home. While some people opt for a larger kitchen space, others prefer a rollaway kitchen which will lead to more gathering space.
Understanding your individual living needs will factor greatly in your design.
What to Consider When Calculating Dimensions of your Tiny House
Now that you know the size your tiny house should be, you need to consider what lifestyle factors are most important to you. This will make all the difference when it comes to finalizing your design and will also ensure that space will be livable.
Here are some things to keep in mind:
How many people your tiny home will need to house will be the biggest factor in design. This will directly determine the amount of “free” space versus the amount of “living” space you will need.
Depending on the plot size, tiny homes can be properly designed to hold up to a family of five.
There are many ways to get creative when it comes to designing your tiny home. However, sacrifices will need to be made. While a large functioning kitchen may be on your dream list, you should consider the space it will take up.
Also, having multiple common areas like dining areas and living spaces may not always be conducive to your tiny home.
While fitting a family into a time home is an obvious struggle, it can become even more difficult when you factor in your stuff. Tiny houses are not an ideal move for families who tend to hold onto a great deal of clutter.
Cherished memories should be included in the planning of your tiny home; however, you should still be comfortable with letting certain extra baggage go.
Get Creative with your Space
Don’t let the average size of a tiny house discourage you from your dream of smaller living. Instead, view it as an opportunity to have complete creative freedom.
The best part about the tiny houses you see around the country is that each has its own individual personality that can be seen once you step instead.
From home interiors that reflect the green nature around them, to homes that ingeniously seem to unfold to reveal hidden treasures.
Once you are certain about what aspects of your lifestyle are most important to showcase through your tiny house, you will be able to flex your creative muscles.
When it comes to working within the dimensions of a tiny home, it is imperative that you think big while imagining small. Sounds confusing?
Here are some ways to get everything you need in a smaller package:
Utilize the Vertical Space
With the average height of a tiny house being 14 feet, there is plenty of room to work upwards. While this isn’t enough space for an entire second level, there are ways to use the height to your advantage. Loft style rooms offer out of the way sleeping arrangements that can easily double as workspaces.
It is also important to work with the height of the tiny home when looking for creative storage solutions.
Furnish with Purpose
Finding the right furniture is imperative when designing your tiny house. Couches can double as dining spaces while Murphy style desks and beds can be hidden away to optimize living spaces.
Even showers can be downsized to a single shower head that can be moved out of sight to make room for a larger bathing space. When it comes to furnishing your home, the more use you can get out of one piece, the better use of space you will have.
Include the Outdoor Space
Since tiny homes are often set on larger properties, you have an opportunity to expand your living area into nature. Depending on the climate of your town, you can easily use outdoor space as an extension of your home.
Outdoor seating as well as dining areas will not only allow you to have more space inside your home but will also give entertaining a rustic and comfortable feeling.
Know Your Limits!
The proper size and dimension of your tiny home will not be the limit that you will have when it comes to planning and design. One of the most important things to remember is that your home will have to follow a direct set of rules and instructions based on your local laws.
According to specific construction codes, a tiny home should be no larger than 400 square feet.
However, this does not include any areas that you build upwards like lofts or storage spaces. You also need to remember the road limits if you plan on moving the thing.
Specific permits will need to be filed in order to move or start construction on your tiny house. Depending on where you live, this may be followed by visits from zoning board members to ensure your house can be built. Also, it is important to know whether or not your home will be listed as “moveable” or not. If you are planning on designing your house with wheels, it may be considered more of an RV and less of a “tiny home”.
Lastly, you need to work within the dimensions of the average tiny home while still ensuring that your home will be permitted as safe to live in. Some points of safety to consider when planning the dimensions of your home are:
- Fire exits
- Distance from sleeping space to the kitchen
- Stairs or ladders
- Window and door access
- The overall height of the interior
While some of these planning aspects are fairly standard for any home, with tiny houses, they can make or break your design.
The average size of a tiny home is the perfect jumping off point for anyone planning on making the change to smaller living.
While working within such specifics dimensions may seem like an impossible task, the end result has the potential to be magical. It will be key to have a bulletproof plan in place before beginning construction on your tiny house.
This way you will be able to answer questions about specific dimensions as well as obtain correct permits without missing a step.
Even though the process may seem daunting, in the long run, the joy of having a de-clutter home as well as the satisfaction of knowing that you are decreasing your carbon footprint will make the journey more than worth it.
Want to see the best tiny houses we have found? We have filmed a ton of homes, check out these great tiny house video tours.
Morten is the founder of GoDownsize. He has filmed and interviewed people living in tiny houses and RVs since 2011. He grew up on the coast where his dad took him boating from a young age. He has completely rebuilt two RVs in which he travels with his family for months at the time. Read more about Morten here.