Will Your Town Allow a Tiny House? Find the Best Places in America to go Tiny
Most towns or subdivisions have zoning regulations and building codes that limit the minimum size of a home that can be constructed.
Due to different zoning laws, a tiny house may not be legal for full-time residence in most towns in America.
Be sure to check with your local municipality before starting construction or purchasing a tiny home. Even if you own some land in the middle of nowhere, local zoning and building codes may prohibit a tiny house.
Even though the IRC and local zoning regulations are in place, a citizen can still apply for a variance through the local planning commission to build outside the existing codes. The states listed below have most progressive building codes, or they are home to the most interesting tiny house projects.
A great resource for all Tiny home enthusiast is the American Tiny House Association.
We encourage you to check their website and consider becoming a member.
The American Tiny House Association has great info on zoning and building regulations around the country.
We will share some of that info here but please check American Tiny House Association website for more complete information.
Tiny House Friendly States:
California is one of the best states to be a tiny house enthusiast. The best counties are Alameda, Contra Costa, Lake, Mendocino, Napa, Sacramento, and Sonoma.
The town of Walsenburg, in southern Colorado. The city changed its zoning rules specifically to allow tiny homes to be built on residential lots. The houses do need to be permanently constructed on foundations, not on trailers, and they must hook up to city utilities.
Durango is also Tiny Friendly.
Rockledge, Florida has changed its zoning laws making this town very tiny friendly.
Today, both tiny houses on wheels and foundation are legal inside the city limits within two zoning districts that include community use. The Rockledge Tiny House Community will be a Pocket Neighborhood with homes ranging 150 to 700 square feet around shared park space.
Sarasota County is also very tiny friendly.
Nantucket, MA voters approve tiny houses on wheels on private property.
Voters approved by voice vote Isaiah Stover’s citizen’s petition to allow “tiny houses” in most residential zoning districts on the island. The new dwellings will be subject to all applicable building, zoning and regulatory requirements of their zoning districts, but built on trailers for ease of movement around the island. Title of the structure will also remain with the owner of the building, not the land on which it rests. Read more – http://www.ack.net/TownMeetingSaturday040216.html
Portland Oregon may be one of the best cities for tiny houses, as well as Salem, Ashland, and Eugene.
In July 2014, in northwest Texas, the tiny town of Spur became the first “tiny house friendly” town in America, with no minimum size requirement for homes on foundations. Tiny houses on wheels are welcome if the wheels are removed and the house is tied down. See their FAQ page. Scroll to down to the question, “Are tiny houses on wheels (aka Tiny House Trailers) welcome in Spur?” Read about one man’s tiny house journey to Spur.
Read the details: http://www.spurfreedom.org/city-proclamation/
The following places have no minimum size for houses:
- Sarasota County, FL
- Union Mills, NC
- Newfield, NY
- Philadelphia, PA
- Spur, TX
However, be aware that there may be minimum size restrictions imposed by a Homeowners Association, if the lot is in a development.
Note that houses must still meet building codes.
Remember to also check with local governments before buying or building a tiny house.