The Santa Barbara is one of six gorgeous little 400-square-foot houses in the California Collection created by The Homestead Partners. Each house has a full kitchen and bathroom, private bedroom with space for at least a queen-size bed, living/dining/kitchen that opens to an outdoor dining patio or terrace, and plenty of storage. Big enough to have a friend over. Just make sure you're in love with them first. Have your time machine plop you down wherever and whenever in Spanish California and you'll find magnificent adobe ranch houses, with or without Zorro and Sergeant Garcia. The style persisted for centuries, and then post-World War I developers transformed it into ubiquitous urban and suburban middle-class housing that still dots the southwest.
Ours is both smaller and nicer than those, Spanish Colonial distilled so perfectly you'll expect Leo Carrillo to walk through the French doors from the patio with martini in hand. Interior Features 398 square feet Open living/dining room and full kitchen, with French doors opening to raised side patio, and entry door opening to raised front patio Cathedral ceilings with exposed rafters throughout Full bathroom Space for compact washer/dryer Bedroom sized for a king or queen bed, with built-in desk, storage, closet, and French doors opening to side patio Exterior Features 441 square feet Raised open-air patio at entry Raised side patio covered with open rafters Total Footprint 839 square feet.
In the United States the average size of new single family homes grew from 1,780 square feet (165 m2) in 1978 to 2,479 square feet (230.3 m2) in 2007, and to 2,662 square feet (247.3 m2) in 2013, despite a decrease in the size of the average family. Reasons for this include increased material wealth and prestige.
The small house movement is a return to houses of less than 1,000 square feet (93 m2). Frequently the distinction is made between small (between 400 square feet (37 m2) and 1,000 square feet (93 m2)), and tiny houses (less than 400 square feet (37 m2)), with some as small as 80 square feet (7.4 m2). Sarah Susanka has been credited with starting the recent countermovement toward smaller houses when she published The Not So Big House (1997). Earlier pioneers include Lloyd Kahn, author of Shelter (1973) and Lester Walker, author of ″Tiny Houses″ (1987). Henry David Thoreau, and the publication of his book "Walden" is also quoted as early inspiration.
To be a legal residence, a structure must be built in accordance with local building codes. Most states have adopted the International Residential Code for One- and Two- Family Dwellings. However, there is great diversity in the specific versions. Scroll down to see the US map. In addition to the IRC, a state, county or city may have additional codes that must be followed. Rare exceptions do exist. The book, No Building Codes, written in 2010 by Terry Herb, provides information on areas where building codes are absent or rarely enforced.
If a tiny home on its own land isn't possible, explore building your tiny house as an Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU) or granny flat in the backyard of an existing home. Be sure to check zoning in your neighborhood as only some areas allow ADUs.
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