YOUR tiny new home could cost you thousands of dollars in fines — or even eviction — if officials say it was built without a permit.
It’s “of utmost importance” that you comply with all building and zoning codes when building your tiny home, says one expert.
According to Maria Fredgaard, writing for Go Downsize, when building your tiny dream home you need to make sure the whole process is legal.
“Living illegally in your tiny home can come with significant costs and risks.”
She warns that these pitfalls could get you hit with whopping fines of “over $750 a day for every day you live in an illegal home.”
Also, this fine will remain in place as long as “you remain in the home after your eviction notice.”
Unfortunately, for homebuilders looking to downsize and save money, many states in the US “don’t have specific and consistent rules that apply to small homes,” Fredgaard adds.
To make matters worse, some areas even ban micro-apartments “because of the difficulties with regulation and zoning,” she warns.
And while dealing with local bureaucracy can be confusing, you “need to ask questions and get advice from your local government offices to make sure you’re doing everything right.
“This will help prevent a catastrophe later.”
Every state, city and county will have its own set of consequences for those living illegally in their tiny home.
Authorities may order you to move your tiny home – which will cause major headaches if it’s built on permanent foundations.
So, to avoid potentially hefty fines – or being evicted from your home – Fredgaard recommends a few simple steps:
- Check how your tiny home is categorized by your local laws
- Some states associate them more closely with an RV or RV, but most consider them hunting lodges or vacation homes
- Check out the rules whether it will be built either on a permanent foundation or on wheels to allow for travel
- A permanent home tiny home often requires the same permits and procedures as a traditional wooden home
- Those that are built on wheels “may have more lenient standards,” she says
- It’s also worth checking the laws governing the overall size of your tiny home, as some counties — Florida, for example — require a minimum square footage
- Make sure your area is designated for a tiny dwelling – before you start building
- Talking to the local planning office is an ideal place to start before applying for permits
“It’s paramount that you comply with all building and zoning codes when building your tiny home,” says Fredgaard.
Tiny homes are growing in popularity as Americans look for more ways to make their dollar work.
However, more stories are emerging about people displaced due to coding issues with the state government.
For example, Massachusetts’ regulations when it comes to parking and building tiny homes are known today as some of the strictest in the county.
They also require builders to follow certain rules when it comes to spacing and the dimensions of the home.