Sunday, January 24, 2016

Fresno Passes Groundbreaking ‘Tiny House’ Rules

It may seem surprising that Fresno, better known for sprawling new developments, is paving the way when it comes to rules for eco-conscious tiny houses.

“We are the first city in the nation to actually write into its development code authorization for ‘tiny homes,’ ” says Mayor Ashley Swearingen. 
Fresno’s new rules specifically pertain to tiny homes on wheels, which are often treated like RVs in other cities. So that means there are limits on where and how long they can be parked.
“This is an important step forward for the tiny house movement because it sets a precedent for other jurisdictions nationwide,” says Amy Turnbull, one of the directors of the American Tiny House Association. “This ordinance sends a clear message: we need to adapt our codes to accommodate new housing models and we need to do it quickly and decisively.”
“This is a hot new trend in the United States housing market,” says Swearingen. “It attracts people who are drawn to the prospect of a simpler lifestyle with less stuff, and more financial freedom.”

Some of Swearingen’s motivation comes from wanting to support local jobs and manufacturing. A new Fresno company, California Tiny House, is now building these custom homes for people all over the state.
[The home features a] compact fridge, composting toilet and combined washer-dryer [and a tiny  upstairs loft with a built-in bed].
“It does the whole cycle, washes and dries,” Mosley explained. “All the water that you use through the house goes back to the water table. It’s all gray water.”
File:Tiny house, Portland.jpg
Spencer says the fact that new custom-built tiny homes like these start at $45,000 could really be a game-changer, especially in a city that was hit hard during the foreclosure crisis.
By Sasha Khokha
January 19, 2016

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