The home purchase costs have exploded since the pandemic. The average selling price in the country is $507,800, hitting an all-time high. With mortgage rates having practically doubled since the beginning of the year, the cost of buying a new home continues to become more unaffordable. As a result, more and more home buyers are considering buying small homes. Tiny homes are growing in popularity as more people embrace a minimalist lifestyle and seek out more affordable housing.
How much does a tiny house cost?
The size of the average single-family home in the United States has increased since 2000. The maximum peak was 2,467 square feet in 2015 and it has currently fallen to 2,261 square feet. However, tiny homes are between 100 and 400 square feet, a fraction of a typical home.
The national average cost of a tiny home is $300 per square foot, double that of a traditional home at $150 per square foot. But smaller houses are always cheaper to build. The average cost of a tiny home is $45,000, ranging from $30,000 to $60,000.
Cost factors for a small house
Costs for a tiny house can be as low as $8,000 and as high as $150,000. The wide price range is based on a number of factors.
- House size: Tiny homes are generally under 400 square feet and can be as small as 60 square feet.
- House foundation: Foundations for a small house can range from $5,000 to $8,000. Tiny houses built on wheels generally do not require a foundation.
- Type of building materials: Materials for a range of tiny homes range from around $14,050 to $54,800. Many tiny homes are conversions of vans, buses, or shipping containers.
- Building permit fees: A tiny house on a trailer generally does not need a permit, as it is considered personal property and not real estate. A small house built on a foundation will require a permit, which costs an average of $1,350.
- Access to utilities: If your tiny house is in a rural area, you may need to install pre-existing power lines which cost between $250 and $5,000.
- Type of amenities: More expensive tiny homes usually have more luxurious amenities, such as granite countertops, stainless steel appliances, and other high-end appliances.
Hidden Costs of a Tiny House
There are other costs associated with a tiny home that can add up quickly. Here are other costs that many homeowners may overlook.
- Zoning laws: Zoning laws are based on where you live and may incur additional costs.
- Contractors and other professionals: Depending on where you live and what work you want done, contractors charge different rates.
- Storage: If your tiny house doesn’t hold all of your belongings, you may need a storage unit.
- Mortgages: Traditional lenders generally don’t mortgage small houses. Some tiny home builders partner with finance companies to offer financing.
- Insurance: Getting a little home insurance can be difficult and expensive.
- Homeowners Association Fee: Tiny home owners may be in a community that charges for one.
- Value of tiny houses: The resale value is not the same as that of a traditional house. Tiny homes can be harder to sell later and in some cases can depreciate.
Tiny houses not only cost a fraction of a traditional house, but offer other financial benefits. Utility costs are lower since you don’t have to spend as much to cool and heat a smaller space. Property taxes are also lower. A minimalist lifestyle can also be mentally beneficial. Less physical clutter can lead to a less stressful life. Before jumping into a Tiny House, make sure you know the costs.
The Best Mortgage Lender in Ascent in 2022
Mortgage rates are rising – and fast. But they are still relatively low by historical standards. So if you want to take advantage of rates before they get too high, you’ll want to find a lender who can help you get the best rate possible.
This is where Best Mortgage Between.
You can get pre-approved in as little as 3 minutes, without a credit check, and lock in your rate at any time. Another plus? They do not charge origination or lender fees (which can reach 2% of the loan amount for some lenders).
We are firm believers in the Golden Rule, which is why editorial opinions are our own and have not been previously reviewed, approved or endorsed by the advertisers included. The Ascent does not cover all offers on the market. The editorial content of The Ascent is separate from the editorial content of The Motley Fool and is created by a different team of analysts. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.
The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.