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Tiny houses: what's behind them?
Minimalism, environmental friendliness and affordable living options are compactly combined in a tiny house. An extraordinary lifestyle, which, however, is also promised a great deal of freedom in terms of rigid conventions. But how sustainable is the concept of the ecologically lightweight mini house really? For whom is it suitable and who should rather reconsider this concept of life? Which aspects have to be considered and how do the cost factors relate to an apartment or a conventional house? We follow up on questions relating to the subject of "tiny houses".
the essentials in brief
- A tiny house is naturally more suitable for couples or single people
- Tiny houses can adequately replace a small apartment - but never a single-family house
- A tiny house can be designed to be mobile or fixed
- If you build yourself, you can save a lot of money, but you have a lot of work to do - especially if the tiny house is to be completely self-sufficient and on its own land
- Depending on the conception and personal contribution, the costs can be extremely variable
- It should definitely fit in with people in shared flats. The fact is: you will get very close.
Made in USA
The trend towards the tiny house spilled over from the USA to Europe. The Tiny House movement emerged there when the housing shortage was increasing: in the course of the 2007 real estate crisis, many people were forced to limit themselves to minimalist accommodation. Often with a significant amount of do-it-yourself and ingenuity. The results of this work soon found more and more imitators, so that a real trend emerged from it. Aspects such as material abandonment, pragmatic minimalist prudence and environmental friendliness, which are both made possible and embodied by the tiny house, acted as motivation.
In the USA, the tiny house is now an officially recognized building concept - but that's not where it is in this country: Although the term "tiny house" has established itself in our linguistic usage, there are no official guidelines as to when, for example, a house should be used Tiny house or whether owning a tiny house would bring any tax advantages. Despite this, the demand for tiny houses continues to grow in Germany as well.
Who is the tiny house concept suitable for?
The average size of a tiny house is around 40 square meters - but this is not a binding guideline. There is still plenty of room for maneuver, both upwards and downwards. However, as the name suggests, a tiny house is considerably smaller than a conventional house. This results in some clear advantages and disadvantages that one should be aware of before choosing this unconventional and radical form of living.
If you are one of those people who see a great deal of freedom in material minimalism, who consciously want to live environmentally friendly and are also prepared to make significant compromises, then a tiny house may even be an unexpectedly fulfilling concept. If you have to restrict yourself to the essentials in terms of space, you will only hold on to what is really important to you - and what is essential, of course. What many others would perceive as an intolerable restriction may even be liberating for some others! For those who recognize themselves in it and possibly have a partner at their side who shares this vision, the tiny house can be a great piece of happiness in life. But be careful! In that case, the relationship must also be on a no less solid foundation than the later Tiny House - because you can only get out of the way in it to a limited extent.
Who is the tiny house not suitable for?
Of course, the tiny house is not for everyone, after all, for many it quickly comes up against spatial and thus also practical limits. Although some of this can be caught again with sophisticated organizational aids and you will certainly have a lot less cleaning, it will be rather difficult for a family with children in a real Tiny House.
In this respect, a tiny house is something that has to fit both your own self-concept and life planning. Anyone who values their own space as a place of retreat or simply needs a certain living space will probably not be happy here. It is therefore extremely important that a decision is well thought out and not based solely on overzealous idealism. Appropriate holiday offers can help with the decision, because Tiny Houses can also be rented. Such a stay can give you a feeling for the feeling of space - but you shouldn't make the mistake of transferring a pleasant holiday situation to everyday life later on.
Conclusion - feasible but not easy
It is definitely a way of living that you have to be made for. Whether and to what extent a large cost saving can be achieved with this is extremely variable. Because the building site is not getting cheaper in this country just because you want to build a particularly small house on it. And some forms of taxation and homely necessities (kitchen, electricity, etc.) also do not.
Even if you set it low, you will still have to pay around 50,000 euros for a fixed tiny house. Ready-to-move-in tiny houses are even significantly more expensive per square meter than normal houses - the price here can well go into the six-figure range.
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- © MLP Finanzberatung SE, 2021
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