A Tale of Zoning Happily Ever After


Groundbreaking Zoning Ordinace for Tiny House Communities

Documenting tiny house movemehistory in the making in Rockledge, Fl

Image from Tiny House Expedition, documenting tiny house movement history in the making in Rockledge, Fl.

Once upon a time in the small, forward-thinking city of Rockledge, Florida, some of the most progressive tiny housing zoning ordinances in the entire US of A were approved, in record time and with great ease. You see, the forward-thinking City Manager had an eye for viable solutions for the needs of his constituents and a knack for facilitating progress. A fair maiden, by the name of René Hardee approached him & the city planners one fine day with a few simple questions. The rest is history…

A little on the cheesy side? Maybe. But after a recent trip to Florida to witness tiny house movement history in the making, I realized maybe fairytales can come true. The city of Rockledge provides an astonishing example of how smooth the process of creating & approving brand-new zoning regulations can be. Of course every city’s approach to zoning is distinct, with many good reasons. The question is why do some cities make the process so complicated and drawn out? Particularly when presented with a viable idea that benefits residents and provides opportunity for economic development. Continue reading

Experience the Tiny House Jamboree

Photo by Tiny House Expedition

Photo by Tiny House Expedition

Tiny House Expedition captures the essence of the Tiny House Jamboree 2015 experience. The tiny house tribe takes over Colorado Springs for an inspiring, epic weekend. Featuring highlights from this historic tiny house community gathering. Over 35,000 attendees flocked from for all 50 states & many countries, to learn, connect & build community during this 3-day extravaganza. There were 28 tiny houses of all kinds on display, creating an energized temporary TH village.

The first of five videos from #TeamTinyX on the THJ 2015- stay tuned!

The Jamboree videos include advice & insights from tiny house community leaders. Plus, full-length presentations from tiny house luminaries Jay Shafer, Andrew Morrison & Zack Giffin.

One video to be released per day over this week!

Wolverton Tiny House

My name is Steve Wolverton and I’m currently working on a tiny house. My house measures 14′ x 14′ with an addition that measures 10 x 8, so I have about 280 square feet of footprint.

I started the house over a year ago, and moved into it only after a month of starting construction. I’m still doing all the finish work – the devil really is in the details.

I built the house myself. I hammered every nail with a hammer (I still haven’t figured out why I didn’t purchase a nail gun – sadist I guess). I framed it, even raised the walls working alone, did the plumbing, electrical, etc. I enjoyed every bit of it, but those 100 degree Texas summer days were brutal. The worst part was the roofing. I’m afraid of heights, and working on a 12/12 roof laying shingles isn’t the best way to spend one’s time. Continue reading

Holly Pond Cottage

Update*** measurements

Back in January of 2009 I covered Gratitude Millworks and builder Kent McCaffrey and his quality Park Model Style home. Kent contacted me recently to share his latest project called the Holly Pond Cottage. Following is his description of this neat little building.

The Holly Pond Cottage is really beautiful inside and out with lots of light and yet a real cozy secure feeling inside. Notice the pressure treated timbers used for the foundation frame. 2X6 exterior stud walls. R19 plus (with extra pocket airspace) in floor, walls, and ceiling.

Full bath with shower and on demand continuous hot water heater. Closet with washer/dryer hookup. Kitchenette with two burner cooktop, sink, under counter refrigerator space, custom cabinets and custom corian type counter. Digitally controlled heat and air conditioning. Built in bookshelf that doubles as a ladder to loft. Loft has a triple window that looks down on the timbered porch.

*** The measurements of the cottage are:
Outside size – 12×24
Porch – 4×8
Great Room – 10×16
Bathroom – 6×6
Loft – Fits a twin mattress
Wall height – 7 ft. 3 inches
Electric hookup – 200 amp

$24,000 plus delivery charge based on mileage. Call 256-339-1478 and mention you heard about it on the Tiny House Blog.

Continue reading

George’s Mini Vardo Update

Back in January George one of my readers shared his vardo project that he was in the process of building. Recently George sent me an update on his completed vardo and shared that he had been using it regularly. Following is an update from George.

This is my home-built trailer using classic and modern building techniques and style. Based on traveler’s and “gypsy” wagons from Britain and France as well as sheep wagons from the western U.S. I am keeping this to the absolute minimum in size and weight. I don’t plan to live in it so it can be thought of a base camp. I have mulled it over for a very long time and was torn between this style and a teardop design. Each have advantages but this just seems to suit me better.

My final design is certainly not perfect but fit within the very tight parameters I set for myself. Small, light, and relatively cheap were important as were ascetics and traditional building techniques. Unlike modern RVs where people may spend large quantities of time inside the structure, I want this to be used more like early pioneer or “Gypsy” wagons where most of the actual living is done “outside”. The teardrop RV community has taken this to heart, often with a very modern and high-tech design, including microwave ovens, television and entertainment centers, and very modern kitchens. Continue reading