Getting Your Tiny Home Approved By Building Inspectors

Tiny houses are all the rage right now because they offer people an inexpensive and concentrated living experience. However, building codes and real estate laws often make it hard for people to place their tiny home. Read on to understand how you can get your home ready to go.

The Basics Of Tiny Houses And Building Codes

There are a variety of building codes that impact the building and placement of tiny houses. For example, many states and cities have a minimum living area that a home can legally possess. While some tiny homes may meet that standard (due to their concentrated living area), many do not.

For example, most areas require certain building restrictions, such as:

  • Minimum of 1,000 square feet
  • Ceiling height of seven feet
  • One room of at least 120 square feet
  • Connection to water, electric, and plumbing systems

Most tiny house owners get around that by building their home directly on a trailer and classifying it as an RV. As a result, you need to get your home inspected by the Recreational Vehicle Industry Association so they can give it a proper identification number. This will make it more likely to pass building codes.

Real Estate Options For Placing Your Tiny House

When buying a tiny home, you're going to run into a problem with finding a property that will accept a tiny house. Most residential property is subject to the types of building codes mentioned above. The problem you're going to run into consistently is the small living area of the home.

However, there are a variety of real estate options to consider that will allow your tiny house. Some of the most popular of these include the following:

  • Many people simply camp on their own land with their tiny houses, due to their RV status. You may even be able to camp in a friend's backyard, if they allow it.
  • Multi-family zoned land often doesn't require a minimum unit size, making it a useful investment for a tiny home living area.
  • Purchase an empty lot at a trailer park that doesn't have restrictions on the type of buildings they accept.
  • Rural areas are often more open to alternative living situations because they want more people to move to the area. Migrant housing property is often an option here.

You May Have Issues With Building Permits

Some tiny house owners carefully go through this entire process and follow the laws perfectly, but still find their home is not approved. One family was told multiple times that their house wasn't approved, often for technical reasons, such as a lack of inspection by a third party.

Talk to your local government about this issue and have them print you out a full list of building code guidelines. Make sure to also get the guidelines for RV placement, as well as laws regarding camping. Discuss these with a building inspector and do what you have to do to get your home approved.

This may require a variety of processes, such as:

  • Adding electrical access to your property
  • Purchasing more land
  • Installing plumbing
  • Expanding the size of your tiny home

If you run into problems like this when placing your tiny house, don't hesitate to call a professional building code consultant today. They can help you sort through these issues and get your tiny house approved. 

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After my business started to struggle, I knew that I was in hot water. We had a few balloon payments coming due, and I knew that we didn't have the money that we needed to make them. I thought long and hard about how to resolve the situation, and I decided that it might make sense to work with a professional consulting company. I contacted them, and they came out to talk with me about my business. They made suggestions the first day that completely turned things around. Check out this blog to learn how a consultant could help you.