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Australian hype: carbon-neutral houses made of recycled materials
The other week, a new Australian project caught our attention. A self-proclaimed feminist architecture studio called Whispering Smith came up with the very first prototype of their brainchild. This House A, as the first of its kind is lovingly called, is built as a hybrid between an apartment and a house. With its 753 square feet, it is definitely making the most of the land on which it is situated. Increasing popularity of small and tiny houses It is only the latest fad on a wave of small and tiny house projects. The obsession with creating small(er) living spaces has swept the globe, with people from Austria to Australia coming up with innovative, cutting-edge designs for their own version of a small home. Not only are they much more sustainable and cost-effective, they also have significantly lower heating and water bills. Another argument for downsizing could be that it forces people to cut back on its possessions and only keep those items that they really need - which should, according to popular theories, allow them to live happier and fuller lives as there is less clutter in their lives holding them down. Apartment-house made of recycled materials As for House A, which was built to accommodate the directors of the architecture studio developing it, a focus on recycling seemed to be the main focus. Its small size is optimised for building on small lots, while using various recycled materials to constructing the house - including whitewashed brick, timber, cabinetry and 65-percent-recycled-slag and concrete tilt-up panels.   A location near Perth, Australia was carefully chosen for this project. The house was built in a neighbourhood that is known for its dedication to sustainability: House A was the first of three carbon-neutral residences that were to be built here. And even though it only measures 70 square meters, it feels remarkably comfortable: its three compact levels include a full-sized garage underground and two living floors.   Simple and basic interior Even the interior fits the mentality of scaling down and recycling. Its palette is monochromatic and industrious in its execution, meaning that small flaws and imperfections are still visible rather than hidden away. At the same time, the building is constructed in an open space kind of setting, with minimal use of walls and doors to separate spaces.   This gives the interior an effortless flow, in which spaces blend together effortlessly. This includes the outdoor space, which can easily be added to the house through moveable walls and sliding doors. Perth normally has a climate that allows for this luxurious blending of indoor and outdoor living, which only adds to the spacious feel of the home.   The appeal of House A and other tiny houses Even though the advantages of living small are obvious, there are quite a few who wonder what the actual appeal of such a lifestyle is. Yet the developers are convinced that this movement in small living is going to make a huge difference in the lives of the new generation: “ House A embodies our desire to build something relevant for our generation. A lot of younger people and downsizers don't have a lot of stuff or are having children much later and we are using our homes for all kinds of things, from starting businesses or hosting a long table dinner for 20. We wanted to build a prototype house that did all of these things, while being affordable, sustainable and made from really beautiful, long lasting materials, and we thought the best way was just to design and build it ourselves. ” Other sustainable measures Apart from mostly using recycled materials for its construction and attention paid to the way in which spaces interact with themselves and the outdoors, more measures have been implemented in House A that serve a greater purpose. For instance, an underground rainwater-collecting tank provides water for most of the house. Solar panels offset the electricity needs, and an indoor clothes-drying line provides a natural way of drying laundry - removing the need for mechanical solutions, such as an actual dryer.   All of these measures add up to a carbon neutral way of living, while the home’s garden might even elevate its status to being carbon negative. The garden space is a sanctuary for native plant species to grown and blossom, allowing local bird species to thrive. This makes it a great outdoor space that respects its environment while being a great space to relax for the human inhabitants. House A is definitely ranking up there with other small and tiny house projects. It is innovative, yet nifty and very sustainable. Plus, it definitely pleases the eye - if you are into bare and minimalistic living, that is.
The other week, a new Australian project caught our attention. A self-proclaimed feminist architecture studio called Whispering Smith came up with the very first prototype of their brainchild. This House A, as the first of its kind is lovingly called, is built as a hybrid between an apartment and a house. With its 753 square feet, it is definitely making the most of the land on which it is situated. Increasing popularity of small and tiny houses It is only the latest fad on a wave of small and tiny house projects. The obsession with creating small(er) living spaces has swept the globe, with people from Austria to Australia coming up with innovative, cutting-edge designs for their own version of a small home. Not only are they much more sustainable and cost-effective, they also have significantly lower heating and water bills. Another argument for downsizing could be that it forces people to cut back on its possessions and only keep those items that they really need - which should, according to popular theories, allow them to live happier and fuller lives as there is less clutter in their lives holding them down. Apartment-house made of recycled materials As for House A, which was built to accommodate the directors of the architecture studio developing it, a focus on recycling seemed to be the main focus. Its small size is optimised for building on small lots, while using various recycled materials to constructing the house - including whitewashed brick, timber, cabinetry and 65-percent-recycled-slag and concrete tilt-up panels.   A location near Perth, Australia was carefully chosen for this project. The house was built in a neighbourhood that is known for its dedication to sustainability: House A was the first of three carbon-neutral residences that were to be built here. And even though it only measures 70 square meters, it feels remarkably comfortable: its three compact levels include a full-sized garage underground and two living floors.   Simple and basic interior Even the interior fits the mentality of scaling down and recycling. Its palette is monochromatic and industrious in its execution, meaning that small flaws and imperfections are still visible rather than hidden away. At the same time, the building is constructed in an open space kind of setting, with minimal use of walls and doors to separate spaces.   This gives the interior an effortless flow, in which spaces blend together effortlessly. This includes the outdoor space, which can easily be added to the house through moveable walls and sliding doors. Perth normally has a climate that allows for this luxurious blending of indoor and outdoor living, which only adds to the spacious feel of the home.   The appeal of House A and other tiny houses Even though the advantages of living small are obvious, there are quite a few who wonder what the actual appeal of such a lifestyle is. Yet the developers are convinced that this movement in small living is going to make a huge difference in the lives of the new generation: “ House A embodies our desire to build something relevant for our generation. A lot of younger people and downsizers don't have a lot of stuff or are having children much later and we are using our homes for all kinds of things, from starting businesses or hosting a long table dinner for 20. We wanted to build a prototype house that did all of these things, while being affordable, sustainable and made from really beautiful, long lasting materials, and we thought the best way was just to design and build it ourselves. ” Other sustainable measures Apart from mostly using recycled materials for its construction and attention paid to the way in which spaces interact with themselves and the outdoors, more measures have been implemented in House A that serve a greater purpose. For instance, an underground rainwater-collecting tank provides water for most of the house. Solar panels offset the electricity needs, and an indoor clothes-drying line provides a natural way of drying laundry - removing the need for mechanical solutions, such as an actual dryer.   All of these measures add up to a carbon neutral way of living, while the home’s garden might even elevate its status to being carbon negative. The garden space is a sanctuary for native plant species to grown and blossom, allowing local bird species to thrive. This makes it a great outdoor space that respects its environment while being a great space to relax for the human inhabitants. House A is definitely ranking up there with other small and tiny house projects. It is innovative, yet nifty and very sustainable. Plus, it definitely pleases the eye - if you are into bare and minimalistic living, that is.
Australian hype: carbon-neutral houses made of recycled materials
Australian hype: carbon-neutral houses made of recycled materials
#Tiny houses in new created forests
Build in 'green' We have to be careful with nature and open space. But it is still possible to build in green, argues Guido Enthoven, founder of the Institute for Social Innovation (the Netherlands). Image: New York Times In the coming years, many additional homes per year are needed to meet the growing demand. In many countries of the European Union there is a plea to increase the building effort. It should also be possible to 'build in the green'. The reactions to this were predictable and partly justified. Is it possible to combine both goals? Many European countries are already densely built. We have to be careful with nature and open space. At the same time it is good to look at this issue with an open mind. Would it be possible to combine both goals, new homes and new nature? Planting a new forest With the expansion of the housing stock, special attention is needed for starters and elderly homes and the sustainability of homes. The share of single-person households is growing and at the same time there are hardly any homes for this group. Tiny house construction in a forest According to many, tiny houses are an interesting addition to the existing housing stock in the light of demographic trends. Tiny houses are relatively easy to move around, are often 100 percent off-grid (grid-independent), natural gas-free and completely self-sufficient and can therefore be easily occupied in places where infrastructure is lacking. Several dozen municipalities are experimenting with such forms. The ecological footprint of these homes is very small. Forest most popular The European Union must take major steps in the area of ​​climate policy in the coming years. Part of the solution is sought in the field of agro and nature. Forest and wood contribute to climate, recreation, water retention and biodiversity. Forests are the lungs of the world and are a form of above-ground CO2 storage. Research by Wageningen University and Research Center WUR (the Netherlands) shows that forest of all landscape types is the most popular among the Dutch. People who give a low score for the landscape around their immediate living environment especially want more forest. Meanwhile, a series of initiatives have been launched around the country aimed at the realization of (food) forests in combination with tiny houses. Provincial and local authorities will have to be able to make function combinations possible in their zoning plans. Governments can certainly make demands in terms of social integration; the new forms of buildings must fit into the desired image of the landscape. Steve Mann, a permaculture designer and Cultivate KC volunteer, gives guided tours of a food forest. Installed and managed by Cultivate KC. Allison Long Incidentally, the developments in the field of tiny houses also show gems of architectural design and architecture that greatly enhance the quality of the landscape. In the Netherlands, the government, provinces, municipalities and water boards currently own more than 400,000 hectares of land outside the built-up area and outside the Nature Network. This land is now largely leased to farmers. A quarter of the agricultural entrepreneurs will terminate their business activities in the next ten years due to a lack of business successors. Photo: Depositphotos.com Stopping farmers would like to keep their land owned. If 5 percent of this land is converted into forest in the coming decades, this will lead to a substantial expansion of the forest area. In combination with forms of (small-scale) occupation, governments, and with that the taxpayer, also become financially wiser. A recent study for the ministries of LNV (Ministry of Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality) and EZK (Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate) shows that in this way alone 20,000 hectares of new forest can be created in the Netherlands in combination with 60,000 tiny houses. In a circle of 15 kilometers around the cities this will provide for a large social need, for living and for green. Cover photo: Finn-Lough Bubble Domes Fermanagh, Norhern Ireland. By: melanie By: uido Enthoven. Image cover: photography Thomas Mayer Archive.
Build in 'green' We have to be careful with nature and open space. But it is still possible to build in green, argues Guido Enthoven, founder of the Institute for Social Innovation (the Netherlands). Image: New York Times In the coming years, many additional homes per year are needed to meet the growing demand. In many countries of the European Union there is a plea to increase the building effort. It should also be possible to 'build in the green'. The reactions to this were predictable and partly justified. Is it possible to combine both goals? Many European countries are already densely built. We have to be careful with nature and open space. At the same time it is good to look at this issue with an open mind. Would it be possible to combine both goals, new homes and new nature? Planting a new forest With the expansion of the housing stock, special attention is needed for starters and elderly homes and the sustainability of homes. The share of single-person households is growing and at the same time there are hardly any homes for this group. Tiny house construction in a forest According to many, tiny houses are an interesting addition to the existing housing stock in the light of demographic trends. Tiny houses are relatively easy to move around, are often 100 percent off-grid (grid-independent), natural gas-free and completely self-sufficient and can therefore be easily occupied in places where infrastructure is lacking. Several dozen municipalities are experimenting with such forms. The ecological footprint of these homes is very small. Forest most popular The European Union must take major steps in the area of ​​climate policy in the coming years. Part of the solution is sought in the field of agro and nature. Forest and wood contribute to climate, recreation, water retention and biodiversity. Forests are the lungs of the world and are a form of above-ground CO2 storage. Research by Wageningen University and Research Center WUR (the Netherlands) shows that forest of all landscape types is the most popular among the Dutch. People who give a low score for the landscape around their immediate living environment especially want more forest. Meanwhile, a series of initiatives have been launched around the country aimed at the realization of (food) forests in combination with tiny houses. Provincial and local authorities will have to be able to make function combinations possible in their zoning plans. Governments can certainly make demands in terms of social integration; the new forms of buildings must fit into the desired image of the landscape. Steve Mann, a permaculture designer and Cultivate KC volunteer, gives guided tours of a food forest. Installed and managed by Cultivate KC. Allison Long Incidentally, the developments in the field of tiny houses also show gems of architectural design and architecture that greatly enhance the quality of the landscape. In the Netherlands, the government, provinces, municipalities and water boards currently own more than 400,000 hectares of land outside the built-up area and outside the Nature Network. This land is now largely leased to farmers. A quarter of the agricultural entrepreneurs will terminate their business activities in the next ten years due to a lack of business successors. Photo: Depositphotos.com Stopping farmers would like to keep their land owned. If 5 percent of this land is converted into forest in the coming decades, this will lead to a substantial expansion of the forest area. In combination with forms of (small-scale) occupation, governments, and with that the taxpayer, also become financially wiser. A recent study for the ministries of LNV (Ministry of Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality) and EZK (Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate) shows that in this way alone 20,000 hectares of new forest can be created in the Netherlands in combination with 60,000 tiny houses. In a circle of 15 kilometers around the cities this will provide for a large social need, for living and for green. Cover photo: Finn-Lough Bubble Domes Fermanagh, Norhern Ireland. By: melanie By: uido Enthoven. Image cover: photography Thomas Mayer Archive.
#Tiny houses in new created forests
#Tiny houses in new created forests
 Live totally #off-grid can be done.
This Engineer Works to Provide Electricity in Rural Africa Using His Solar Batteries. He built a micro home in Canada to prove that to live totally off-grid can be done. Is it really possible to live off the grid, that is, not depending on fossil fuels for electricity? If you ask Caleb Grove, of course it is. That is his reason why he built a micro home that is fully dependent on solar power. The house, which measure only 8 x 12 foot, is Grove’s model for a scalable and cheap power set-up. It is powered by solar 12-volt batteries, about twice the size of an insulated coffee mug, that could store enough power for lights, a fan, and a laptop inside the home. He spent $10,000 on this project in a span of six months. But the electrical engineer’s solar house is only a representation. His real work is in a small island in Africa called Mbissa, where he already installed 40 similar systems. He was raised in that island for almost ten years because his parents were missionary. Until in 2000, they decided to settle there. He was 8 years old then. Grove saw how difficult it is to have electricity in that island of 3,000 people, many of which are farmers and fishers. And when he decided to take electrical engineering from the University of New Brunswick at 17, he knew that after graduating he would work on helping them. For him to make his dream a reality, Grove had to find money. While being an engineering student, he took to UNB funding agencies which were generous to him – he was able to accumulate $30,000 which he used to travel back and forth to Africa and develop solar technology. This Engineer from Africa Transforms Plastic Wastes Into Roofing Material “The people in Cameroon, have, through our technology, a plug and play system,” says Grove. “So someone who wants to put in their solar electricity, it’s extremely simple. They don’t need a background in electrical engineering to come up with this product.” “And so to be able to take that and do that here would be the same idea,” he added. His idea was to make a solar-powered system that was not only cheap, but also made with local materials. Of course it would want it to be easily installed. “I have to make sure that it’s done so that when I leave, if I leave it will continue. So that means is that it is not the white man coming in to do work. That makes it sustainable. It is theirs,” Grove shared. Grove indeed left Mbissa eventually but he was able to train three local men with the solar batteries and installations he made. This was his benchmark in putting up his own startup he calls Mbissa Energy Systems, whose goal is to bring electricity to regions of rural Africa that had never seen power before. Sources: CBC News | ONB Canada, Photo via Caleb Grove 
This Engineer Works to Provide Electricity in Rural Africa Using His Solar Batteries. He built a micro home in Canada to prove that to live totally off-grid can be done. Is it really possible to live off the grid, that is, not depending on fossil fuels for electricity? If you ask Caleb Grove, of course it is. That is his reason why he built a micro home that is fully dependent on solar power. The house, which measure only 8 x 12 foot, is Grove’s model for a scalable and cheap power set-up. It is powered by solar 12-volt batteries, about twice the size of an insulated coffee mug, that could store enough power for lights, a fan, and a laptop inside the home. He spent $10,000 on this project in a span of six months. But the electrical engineer’s solar house is only a representation. His real work is in a small island in Africa called Mbissa, where he already installed 40 similar systems. He was raised in that island for almost ten years because his parents were missionary. Until in 2000, they decided to settle there. He was 8 years old then. Grove saw how difficult it is to have electricity in that island of 3,000 people, many of which are farmers and fishers. And when he decided to take electrical engineering from the University of New Brunswick at 17, he knew that after graduating he would work on helping them. For him to make his dream a reality, Grove had to find money. While being an engineering student, he took to UNB funding agencies which were generous to him – he was able to accumulate $30,000 which he used to travel back and forth to Africa and develop solar technology. This Engineer from Africa Transforms Plastic Wastes Into Roofing Material “The people in Cameroon, have, through our technology, a plug and play system,” says Grove. “So someone who wants to put in their solar electricity, it’s extremely simple. They don’t need a background in electrical engineering to come up with this product.” “And so to be able to take that and do that here would be the same idea,” he added. His idea was to make a solar-powered system that was not only cheap, but also made with local materials. Of course it would want it to be easily installed. “I have to make sure that it’s done so that when I leave, if I leave it will continue. So that means is that it is not the white man coming in to do work. That makes it sustainable. It is theirs,” Grove shared. Grove indeed left Mbissa eventually but he was able to train three local men with the solar batteries and installations he made. This was his benchmark in putting up his own startup he calls Mbissa Energy Systems, whose goal is to bring electricity to regions of rural Africa that had never seen power before. Sources: CBC News | ONB Canada, Photo via Caleb Grove 
 Live totally #off-grid can be done.
Live totally #off-grid can be done.
#Tinyhouse community proposed for Christchurch New Zealand
A group pushing for a tiny house community in Christchurch says the red zone would be the perfect location. Crown-council agency Regenerate Christchurch has already signalled housing could be part of the future use of the 602 hectare space. Members of the Canterbury Tiny House Society believe their affordable, mobile and compact houses are the perfect fit. Canterbury Tiny House Society committee member Kyle Sutherland says the red zone (eathquake area 2011) would be perfect for the compact houses. "The land may not be suitable in 20, 30 or 50 years’ time due to sea level rise, climate change or even future potential earthquakes," committee member Kyle Sutherland said.  "We see our model of housing as perfect for the red zone, because it doesn't require foundations, it's very low impact and it's an affordable option." Sutherland says tiny houses are increasingly attractive as traditional homes become more expensive. The society is developing a proposal to submit to Regenerate Christchurch, which early last month released 10 options for the red zone. Five of these included residential housing as a component, with a feasibility report identifying up to 265ha as suitable for housing. Sutherland said the size of tiny houses, which were generally less than 25sqm, meant little land was required to establish a community. It would be the first of its kind in New Zealand and provide social, ecological and economic benefits, he said. Sutherland built his 17sqm home, constructed of a timber frame on a purpose-built steel trailer, for $85,000 over the summer of 2015/16. He was attracted to the idea after struggling to find affordable options elsewhere in the city. "Because of how unaffordable housing is in New Zealand, Kiwis are finding ways to get around the crisis and find their own solutions," he said. "For the cost of a deposit on a house, people can buy or build a tiny house – which enables so much more in terms of living." The house, which also had a 6sqm loft sleeping space, was powered by four solar panels and featured a compost toilet. A stint travelling convinced Sutherland much of what he owned was superfluous, so he willingly embraced a minimalist living style. He acknowledged tiny houses were not for everyone, but said young people and retirees whose children had left home would find them attractive options. There had been overwhelmingly positive feedback for the idea of a tiny house community in the red zone, Sutherland said. "We're very positive, we feel this definitely needs to be part of the regeneration of Christchurch," he said. Around 7000 homes were cleared from the red zone after the 2011 earthquakes at a cost of $1.5 billion to the Crown, most of which was spent in the Avon River suburbs. Regenerate Christchurch chief executive Ivan Lafeta said while no decisions had been made on the long-term use of the red zone, the agency was open to the possibility of tiny housing. A residential land use assessment for the area found building homes to a better standard did not necessarily mean stronger or more expensive, he said. Instead, it might mean building differently, with Lafeta citing lightweight or off-grid homes as possible examples. "The design of any houses would need to recognise the hazards that could cause significant damage such as earthquakes and flooding," he said. Submissions on the 10 options for the red zone closed on Monday. Regenerate will hold an exhibition of shortlisted options early next year. A draft Regeneration Plan outlining the preferred land use plan for the area would be developed by the end of 2018. This would not necessarily include residential uses. Christchurch Press  
A group pushing for a tiny house community in Christchurch says the red zone would be the perfect location. Crown-council agency Regenerate Christchurch has already signalled housing could be part of the future use of the 602 hectare space. Members of the Canterbury Tiny House Society believe their affordable, mobile and compact houses are the perfect fit. Canterbury Tiny House Society committee member Kyle Sutherland says the red zone (eathquake area 2011) would be perfect for the compact houses. "The land may not be suitable in 20, 30 or 50 years’ time due to sea level rise, climate change or even future potential earthquakes," committee member Kyle Sutherland said.  "We see our model of housing as perfect for the red zone, because it doesn't require foundations, it's very low impact and it's an affordable option." Sutherland says tiny houses are increasingly attractive as traditional homes become more expensive. The society is developing a proposal to submit to Regenerate Christchurch, which early last month released 10 options for the red zone. Five of these included residential housing as a component, with a feasibility report identifying up to 265ha as suitable for housing. Sutherland said the size of tiny houses, which were generally less than 25sqm, meant little land was required to establish a community. It would be the first of its kind in New Zealand and provide social, ecological and economic benefits, he said. Sutherland built his 17sqm home, constructed of a timber frame on a purpose-built steel trailer, for $85,000 over the summer of 2015/16. He was attracted to the idea after struggling to find affordable options elsewhere in the city. "Because of how unaffordable housing is in New Zealand, Kiwis are finding ways to get around the crisis and find their own solutions," he said. "For the cost of a deposit on a house, people can buy or build a tiny house – which enables so much more in terms of living." The house, which also had a 6sqm loft sleeping space, was powered by four solar panels and featured a compost toilet. A stint travelling convinced Sutherland much of what he owned was superfluous, so he willingly embraced a minimalist living style. He acknowledged tiny houses were not for everyone, but said young people and retirees whose children had left home would find them attractive options. There had been overwhelmingly positive feedback for the idea of a tiny house community in the red zone, Sutherland said. "We're very positive, we feel this definitely needs to be part of the regeneration of Christchurch," he said. Around 7000 homes were cleared from the red zone after the 2011 earthquakes at a cost of $1.5 billion to the Crown, most of which was spent in the Avon River suburbs. Regenerate Christchurch chief executive Ivan Lafeta said while no decisions had been made on the long-term use of the red zone, the agency was open to the possibility of tiny housing. A residential land use assessment for the area found building homes to a better standard did not necessarily mean stronger or more expensive, he said. Instead, it might mean building differently, with Lafeta citing lightweight or off-grid homes as possible examples. "The design of any houses would need to recognise the hazards that could cause significant damage such as earthquakes and flooding," he said. Submissions on the 10 options for the red zone closed on Monday. Regenerate will hold an exhibition of shortlisted options early next year. A draft Regeneration Plan outlining the preferred land use plan for the area would be developed by the end of 2018. This would not necessarily include residential uses. Christchurch Press  
#Tinyhouse community proposed for Christchurch New Zealand
#Tinyhouse community proposed for Christchurch New Zealand
Tiny houses revolt by neighbours who say
To developer Kelvin Young, his planned “tiny house” community in northwest Charlotte will create an affordable place for first-time home buyers or for people downsizing. But to neighbours, Young’s Keyo Park West is a threat to their property values. They are asking City Council to stop it. “We have been hanging out there for 60 years in Coulwood,” said Robert Wilson, who lives a half-mile from Young’s planned tiny house neighbourhood off Cathey Road near Paw Creek Elementary. “All of a sudden this little building started coming up and no one knew what it was. Then it started looking like a house.” Young’s Keyo Park West would have 56 tiny houses if built out, with the smallest homes – 500 square feet – selling for $89,000. The median home price in Charlotte is about $190,000. Young is piggy-backing on a national trend of people buying tiny houses, which has been popularized by TV shows such as HGTV’s “Tiny House, Big Living.” In many cases, those homes are truly tiny, with as little as 200 square feet. Keyo Park West would have small homes, but Young’s use of “tiny homes” is in part a marketing strategy. Wilson, who spoke before council members in opposition to the project in September, said Keyo Park West should be regulated like a mobile-home park. “You specifically designate areas for mobile homes, and this is no different,” he said. “We want this stopped. We aren’t against (zoning that allows three homes per acre). We are just talking about these types. It will greatly diminish our property values.” The nearby neighbourhood was built in the 1950s. Though only 8 miles from uptown, it’s still a mostly rural area. Homes are appraised at between $175,000 and $250,000. But Young said neighbours don’t understand his project. While TV shows often celebrate tiny homes on wheels, the Keyo Park tiny homes are built on concrete foundations. He said they are no different than a single-family home, only smaller. The city of Charlotte said that’s correct. Ed McKinney, the interim planning director, said the tiny home that’s been built qualifies as a single-family home. The city doesn’t require that single-family homes be a certain size. “To be clear, they are only tiny houses in the marketing name only,” McKinney said. “Many of the tiny houses that people are familiar with (from TV) are on wheels. And the only place you can do that now is in an RV park, and you have to have a site zoned for that.” “We have the most coolest, most eclectic group of people on earth,” Young said about people who have inquired about the homes. “We have 22-year-olds to 72-year-olds. People are moving from uptown, Ballantyne and Pineville. A lot of people think it’s a bunch of young people. But they are people who say, ‘I don’t need all of this.’ ” Young has so far built one 500-square-foot tiny house on Cathey Road. He has sold it for $89,000 – $69,000 for the house and $20,000 for the land. The house has a small bedroom in the back with a bathroom. The front room is a combination kitchen and living room. He has two other lots nearby that Young said are under contract. One is for a two-bedroom house that costs $138,000. The other is for a three-bedroom house with a garage for $170,000. The city isn’t sure whether Young will be able to build-out his community on the rest of the 19-acre parcel. The council’s Transportation and Planning committee discussed Keyo Park West last month and plans to review the tiny homes again in November. Young, a former self-described house-flipper, doesn’t own most of the land. It’s owned by Sackville Currie and Malvina Currie, who have a Fort Lauderdale address. Young said he owns the piece of land where the first tiny home was built and recently acquired the other two parcels. He said he will buy the others when contracts are signed. The Keyo Park West website says prospective buyers must pay a $4,000 non-refundable deposit to reserve a lot. McKinney said Young has not submitted any plans for his neighbourhood, which must comply with city rules on setbacks, streets and sidewalks. “That would still go through all of our technical review,” he said. “It’s hard to know if all this is for real.” Young’s tiny home proposal comes as the city is trying to quickly build more affordable housing. After the Keith Scott protests, council members pledged to build 5,000 new housing units in three years, instead of the previous goal of 5,000 units in five years. Kim Skobba, an assistant professor of family planning, housing and consumer economics at the University of Georgia, has taught a class on tiny houses. She said the popularity of TV shows such as “Tiny House, Big Living” shows people are interested in the idea of owning a tiny house. “However, having an interest in tiny houses might not translate to community acceptance,” she said. “Opposition to affordable housing, regardless of the form, is common, so I guess I am not too surprised to see pushback on tiny homes.” There are no income requirements for Keyo Park West, so it’s possible a $100,000 affordable tiny home could be bought by someone earning $80,000 who just wants a simple life. Chris Galusha of the American Tiny House Association said the Keyo Park West homes are not true tiny houses because they have large lots and the houses themselves are comparatively large. He said he doesn’t think they would affect the property values of older single-family homes nearby. “People are afraid their property values will drop,” he said. “But a 400- to 600-square-foot home will never be appraised with people across the street. Because of the size, those tiny homes will never be in the same appraisal.” Wilson doesn’t agree. “The laws are so loose and ambiguous,” he said. “It doesn’t take into consideration this is a new genre. Just because the land is zoned for (three houses per acre) doesn’t make it right.” @Sharrison_Obs  
To developer Kelvin Young, his planned “tiny house” community in northwest Charlotte will create an affordable place for first-time home buyers or for people downsizing. But to neighbours, Young’s Keyo Park West is a threat to their property values. They are asking City Council to stop it. “We have been hanging out there for 60 years in Coulwood,” said Robert Wilson, who lives a half-mile from Young’s planned tiny house neighbourhood off Cathey Road near Paw Creek Elementary. “All of a sudden this little building started coming up and no one knew what it was. Then it started looking like a house.” Young’s Keyo Park West would have 56 tiny houses if built out, with the smallest homes – 500 square feet – selling for $89,000. The median home price in Charlotte is about $190,000. Young is piggy-backing on a national trend of people buying tiny houses, which has been popularized by TV shows such as HGTV’s “Tiny House, Big Living.” In many cases, those homes are truly tiny, with as little as 200 square feet. Keyo Park West would have small homes, but Young’s use of “tiny homes” is in part a marketing strategy. Wilson, who spoke before council members in opposition to the project in September, said Keyo Park West should be regulated like a mobile-home park. “You specifically designate areas for mobile homes, and this is no different,” he said. “We want this stopped. We aren’t against (zoning that allows three homes per acre). We are just talking about these types. It will greatly diminish our property values.” The nearby neighbourhood was built in the 1950s. Though only 8 miles from uptown, it’s still a mostly rural area. Homes are appraised at between $175,000 and $250,000. But Young said neighbours don’t understand his project. While TV shows often celebrate tiny homes on wheels, the Keyo Park tiny homes are built on concrete foundations. He said they are no different than a single-family home, only smaller. The city of Charlotte said that’s correct. Ed McKinney, the interim planning director, said the tiny home that’s been built qualifies as a single-family home. The city doesn’t require that single-family homes be a certain size. “To be clear, they are only tiny houses in the marketing name only,” McKinney said. “Many of the tiny houses that people are familiar with (from TV) are on wheels. And the only place you can do that now is in an RV park, and you have to have a site zoned for that.” “We have the most coolest, most eclectic group of people on earth,” Young said about people who have inquired about the homes. “We have 22-year-olds to 72-year-olds. People are moving from uptown, Ballantyne and Pineville. A lot of people think it’s a bunch of young people. But they are people who say, ‘I don’t need all of this.’ ” Young has so far built one 500-square-foot tiny house on Cathey Road. He has sold it for $89,000 – $69,000 for the house and $20,000 for the land. The house has a small bedroom in the back with a bathroom. The front room is a combination kitchen and living room. He has two other lots nearby that Young said are under contract. One is for a two-bedroom house that costs $138,000. The other is for a three-bedroom house with a garage for $170,000. The city isn’t sure whether Young will be able to build-out his community on the rest of the 19-acre parcel. The council’s Transportation and Planning committee discussed Keyo Park West last month and plans to review the tiny homes again in November. Young, a former self-described house-flipper, doesn’t own most of the land. It’s owned by Sackville Currie and Malvina Currie, who have a Fort Lauderdale address. Young said he owns the piece of land where the first tiny home was built and recently acquired the other two parcels. He said he will buy the others when contracts are signed. The Keyo Park West website says prospective buyers must pay a $4,000 non-refundable deposit to reserve a lot. McKinney said Young has not submitted any plans for his neighbourhood, which must comply with city rules on setbacks, streets and sidewalks. “That would still go through all of our technical review,” he said. “It’s hard to know if all this is for real.” Young’s tiny home proposal comes as the city is trying to quickly build more affordable housing. After the Keith Scott protests, council members pledged to build 5,000 new housing units in three years, instead of the previous goal of 5,000 units in five years. Kim Skobba, an assistant professor of family planning, housing and consumer economics at the University of Georgia, has taught a class on tiny houses. She said the popularity of TV shows such as “Tiny House, Big Living” shows people are interested in the idea of owning a tiny house. “However, having an interest in tiny houses might not translate to community acceptance,” she said. “Opposition to affordable housing, regardless of the form, is common, so I guess I am not too surprised to see pushback on tiny homes.” There are no income requirements for Keyo Park West, so it’s possible a $100,000 affordable tiny home could be bought by someone earning $80,000 who just wants a simple life. Chris Galusha of the American Tiny House Association said the Keyo Park West homes are not true tiny houses because they have large lots and the houses themselves are comparatively large. He said he doesn’t think they would affect the property values of older single-family homes nearby. “People are afraid their property values will drop,” he said. “But a 400- to 600-square-foot home will never be appraised with people across the street. Because of the size, those tiny homes will never be in the same appraisal.” Wilson doesn’t agree. “The laws are so loose and ambiguous,” he said. “It doesn’t take into consideration this is a new genre. Just because the land is zoned for (three houses per acre) doesn’t make it right.” @Sharrison_Obs  
Tiny houses revolt by neighbours who say
Tiny houses revolt by neighbours who say 'they' will destroy their property values?
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