Can I Put A Tiny House On My Property? – Answered for 2021

If you are wondering what the legalities if you can I put a tiny house on my property? We have written tons about brilliant tiny homes articles our readers have come to love.

During the course of our research, some of the questions asked by readers relate to the rules about living in and owning a tiny home. Some of these questions include whether tiny home users can put multiple tiny homes on one property. As for those asking questions like,

Well, the simple answer is yes. That said, you may have to make special changes to your home design, so it complies with local rules and regulations. And just so you know, these building codes and zoning regulations vary from state to state.

The building codes, zoning rules, and regulations vary according to the area you plan to build your home and based on the type of home you’re planning to construct. Typically, you’ll experience some challenges if your home is the only structure on your property. Most of the difficulties you’ll face will come from local government officials and your neighbors.

Primary residence vs. secondary structure

A primary residence, in terms of tiny homes, refers to any structure built on land that doesn’t currently have any other house. On the flip side, a tiny home is considered a secondary structure if it is built on land that already features a home on it.

For homeowners who plan to build a tiny home as a secondary structure, you’ll have a soft landing with the law. Unfortunately, if your structure is going to be the sole structure on the land you plan to build, you may have a torrid time with the authorities.

While there are no specific reasons for this, we suspect that local government authorities frown at tiny homes being the primary residence because they will end up collecting a meager tax. In most cases, larger homes attract more revenue.

If an individual builds a tiny home with just one bedroom and a single bathroom, authorities can’t charge them as much tax as they would charge homeowners with properties that measure between 2,000 square feet and more.

Also, when you build your tiny home as a primary residence, you may run into issues with your neighbors who may feel threatened by your structure, especially since many people believe that having a smaller home will lower the value of other properties around the area.

Building a tiny home structure on a foundation, especially on a property that already has a primary home, is pretty easy. Plus, it tends to increase the home’s value while increasing the general property tax rates. And sure enough, your neighbors will be happy about the structure, likewise, government officials who still get to collect bigger checks for taxes.

Basic tiny home rules and regulations

Before you kick off your tiny home building project, you’ll need to familiarise yourself with the rules and regulations guiding tiny homes. Trust us when we say you don’t want to be on the bad side of the authorities. That said, here are some basic tiny home building codes, zoning rules, and regulations you should know.

In terms of building code requirements, your tiny home structure should have:

  • At most, one bathroom with a ceiling height that measures between 6 ft and 4 inches.
  • If your tiny home is designed to have a loft, then it must have a ladder or stairs
  • Every tiny home is expected to have at least one window that will be used as an emergency exit.
  • Tiny home ceilings are expected to come in at 6 feet and 8 inches.
  • The essential requirement is that your home has to strictly comply with the requirements outlined by the International Residential Code (IRC). Also, it must meet the guidelines as outlined by the International Building Code (IBC) requirements.

Like we mentioned right from the get-go, these are just basic requirements. Plus, they aren’t universal. To this end, you’ll need to read more about state-specific requirements before kicking off your building project.

Frequently asked questions

Can I rent a tiny house on my property?

Can I rent a tiny house on my property? This is one of the popular questions we get asked by our teeming readers, and today, we want to set the record straight. If you have a tiny home that is a secondary structure on your property, there is every likelihood that you can rent it out.

However, before you lease it out, we suggest reaching out to local authorities to see if there are any reservations about renting your tiny home. Unfortunately, if your tiny home structure is a primary residence, you may have difficulty leasing it out.

We love the concept of rent to own because it helps people get into tiny living easier with little to no money down.

Can I have multiple tiny homes on one property?

It’s already difficult to have a tiny home on your property, so you should expect some difficulties if you plan to have multiple homes on one property. But like we always say, make sure you speak to the authorities before starting any building projects. Who knows, you may be lucky enough to get special permits that let you build multiple tiny homes on one property.

We are sorry to disappoint those asking whether they can get free land for a tiny house as there is nothing like that. And just so you know, getting land to buy or lease for your tiny home project is already tricky. So finding free land for your project will be almost impossible.

Can I put a tiny house in my backyard?

If your tiny house is going to be a secondary structure, there is nothing stopping you from putting it in your backyard. Plus, the laws regarding that are pretty straightforward.

Conclusion

Because the tiny home industry isn’t yet a full-fledged sector, the rules and regulations guiding this space are pretty limited and not as robust as those for traditional properties. More so, there are many grey areas to look out for when it comes to the rules and regulations in the tiny home space. Before you kick off any tiny home project, it’s always a smart move to speak to the relevant authorities.