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Old 03-31-2014, 08:22 PM
 
29,215 posts, read 52,028,096 times
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Who needs a big house for one or two people?

With an emphasis on 'Less House. More Life,' Alek Lisefski, the young owner/designer/builder of a lovely wooden abode-on-wheels, does tiny housing right.

Let’s say you’re an Iowan plotting to haul a 240-square-foot tiny house-on-wheels across the country to the West Coast. What would be the most desirable — and logical — final destination? Portland? Olympia? Joshua Tree? Sonoma County?

Mobile tiny house promotes community, connection to nature | MNN - Mother Nature Network
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Old 04-02-2014, 02:19 AM
 
Location: Sector 001
12,355 posts, read 9,324,099 times
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If gas was not so expensive and we had some sort of affordable universal health care that would let a person not hold down a full time job in order to afford it, I might consider living on the road... but road living is actually quite polluting when you consider transportation costs.. and health care in the US is beyond stupid expensive... obamacare is basically catastrophic care only and is very expensive.
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Old 04-02-2014, 05:08 PM
 
Location: Under a bridge
2,422 posts, read 3,519,332 times
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I'm a fan of tiny houses. I've seen some really nice designs on-line with custom storage and shelving. The tiny house design featured in the OP's post above is really nice. Good for him! I could easily live in one of these since I'm single with no kids and I don't own a bunch of items. A tiny house may be something I would build for myself on one of my lots here in CA. A storage container home is more up my alley but a tiny house is interesting.

Cheers.
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Old 04-02-2014, 06:09 PM
 
4,715 posts, read 9,697,605 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stockwiz View Post
If gas was not so expensive and we had some sort of affordable universal health care that would let a person not hold down a full time job in order to afford it, I might consider living on the road... but road living is actually quite polluting when you consider transportation costs.. and health care in the US is beyond stupid expensive... obamacare is basically catastrophic care only and is very expensive.
I had high hopes for Obamacare and those were all dashed. I was hoping to get a national insurance policy that I could use anywhere in the U.S. for one. I like to travel, but I still would have to go to a "home" state to get medical care.

And yes expensive, unless you are very poor. Which means as a member of the middle class I get the short end of the stick again.
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Old 04-04-2014, 11:59 AM
Zot
 
Location: 3rd rock from a nearby star
468 posts, read 636,019 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John1960 View Post
Who needs a big house for one or two people?
Let me tell a slightly fictionalized story, as a device to reference some math and see how it's received ...

Ages ago, when I was slightly younger than today, my math teacher, Isaac Newton or a close friend of his taught me a bit about calculus. At least I think it was Isaac Newtown, it's tough to recall, it was so very long ago.

I learned that volume varies as a function of a cube, but surface varies as a function of a square. Which seems relevant to the discussion here. I learned about rapid oxidation of small particles as an aside elsewhere and thus understood how grain elevators can explode. While the math is the same, the application is slightly different. I also learned about orbits, and how to calculate them, mostly boring sidereal (the rarely used word "sidereal" refers to movements of stars, galaxies, and often in time as relating to planetary motion) stuff to the best of my recollection. So much remembered, but the names are forgotten.

It must have been Newton, I recall apples falling around us one day in class, the moon was out, and Newton began to wonder why the moon never fell to earth ... anyway ... the whole square and cube thing means the energy loss and gain in a small square footage house which is habitable by normal sized humans is likely to be greater than in a large square footage house all things being equal (meaning similar technology used to build the things). This because the surface area of the house is much greater per interior square foot than a larger house.

Larger relative exposure to the outdoors per interior square foot means greater heat loss / gain in a climate controlled home. In short, this mitigates against any claim of a small home being greener unless it can provoke a lifestyle change.

When young, I recall living in small apartments, those where my years at University. The apartments were small, and mess was virtually unavoidable. As a young university student, my housekeeping skills were woefully undeveloped. My kitchen wasn't large enough for a fat person to cook in without catching fire from the gas range cooktop, but fortunately poverty at the time kept me very thin with little to cook.

If we wish to have smaller living areas, my belief is this is best facilitated not with stand alone homes, but with modular apartments which can reduce climate control costs.

One year, near the end of my time at university a seemingly wonderful opportunity to take a trip in a VW bus with some friends presented itself. I wound up quitting the trip after a few days, it turned out a life on the open road while inside a very small and confined space had some unanticipated consequences. After that Newton and I lost contact, or was it Michael Moore? I forget the names, but recall some of the events (likely very poorly) as it was long ago. The bus stank a bit, sanitation didn't exist within our shared space, maybe it was Michael, the bus, me or this guy Roger that Michael kept talking about ... later he'd make a documentary about it, or about Roger ... sigh my memory about the specifics fails yet again.

At that critical point, my life was changed, working for a living, and earning enough to live in a reasonably sized house took on a new importance. Upon graduation, my goal was to begin a career. It may seem strange, but careers and life are far more complex to live and learn than calculus, and not as neatly calculated as planetary orbits. My experience at how to live life has been a wonderful and full of tremendous learning, first as a single man, then a husband and later a father. Unfortunately living life takes time and time takes a toll on life.

With the above in mind, as an older person who has lived a while, and has some experience, my suggestion based on empirical research is not to live in a home or apartment much smaller than 1,200 square foot if it can be avoided. Else you are likely to feel confined, and intra familial dynamics may suffer. It turns out, husbands, wives and children function best as a family when there is an easy opportunity for privacy. Study of family interpersonal dynamics, spacial quality, and quantity isn't taught much in many formal institutions of learning. Trust me, it's VERY important. Hard to believe our Universities of yore missed it. The above based more or less loosely on personal life experience.

Last edited by Zot; 04-04-2014 at 12:16 PM..
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