Today’s Wonder of the Day was inspired by mariah. mariah Wonders, “What is a Tiny House?” Thanks for WONDERing with us, mariah!

Do you ever feel completely surrounded by… stuff? Clutter can be overwhelming! Somewhere between Dirty Clothes Mountain and the Leaning Tower of Books, some people have found a solution. For them, minimalism is the answer to clearing out the clutter.

Minimalism means living with less. People who live this lifestyle start by getting rid of things they don’t need. Soon, they find that their pile of stuff has shrunk. Then, they live with only necessities. Often, they don’t need as much living space as they used to. That’s when many minimalists make their next move—into a tiny house!

What makes a house tiny? Well, there’s no exact definition. But most people agree that any house that’s under 400 square feet can be considered tiny. By comparison, the median size of an American home in 2018 was about 2,400 square feet.

Are you WONDERing how a house could be that tiny? It takes some architectural creativity. People who build tiny houses get very inventive about where they put spaces for storage. In a tiny house, you’ll find closets and cabinets in places you wouldn’t expect. It also helps that most bedrooms in tiny houses are lofts. That leaves plenty of room below for the kitchen, bathroom, and living area. 

So where does all the clutter go? A tiny house can’t hold much stuff. For many people, that’s one of the major draws. It pushes them to let go of their clutter. They only keep items that serve a purpose or hold high sentimental value.

Would you like to live in a tiny house? There are plenty of benefits. Besides encouraging a minimalist lifestyle, tiny houses are also more affordable. Most tiny houses cost under $40,000 dollars. That’s far less than the median price of a new house in America in 2019, which is $310,400. Owners of tiny houses pay off their homes in much less time than owners of larger homes. 

Tiny houses are also better for the environment. They use much less electricity and are easier to heat and cool. Many tiny houses also come with compost toilets. These toilets turn waste into usable compost instead of flushing it down to the sewer or septic tank. That really cuts back on water usage. 

Another major benefit of tiny homes is that many of them can be moved around. Tired of living in your city? No problem! With a tiny house on wheels, you can pick up and move to a more rural area. You could even take your house closer to the ocean, mountains, or desert! Tiny living makes it much easier to move around. 

Of course, tiny house living isn’t for everyone. While they take less time to clean, some tiny home owners complain that even a small mess seems much bigger in a tiny house. If you live with other people, it can also be very difficult to find privacy or alone time. Additionally, zoning codes in some places make it difficult to find a place to build a tiny house.

Entertaining is also difficult in a tiny house. There’s not much room for people to move around, and only a few people can fit comfortably in most tiny houses. Some people with tiny houses solve this problem by building outdoor entertainment spaces, like patios or decks.

Would you like to live in a tiny house? For many people, it would require a total change of lifestyle. But some say the minimalism is worth it. Clearing out the clutter and moving to a smaller space makes them feel more organized and less stressed. Does that sound like it’s right up your alley? Then the tiny house life could be a good fit for you!

Standards: CCRA.L.3, CCRA.L.6, CCRA.R.4, CCRA.R.1, CCRA.R.2, CCRA.R.10, CCRA.W.4, CCRA.SL.1, CCRA.SL.2

Wonder What's Next?

Feeling down? The topic of today’s Wonder of the Day could be the cause.