Last week I wrote about the myriad legal challenges of living in a super small house, the crux being where to put it. In particular, I noted that the main reason that so many houses are on wheels is not for the mobility but to skirt zoning laws that prohibit dwellings on foundations from having less than X square feet. Well, it turns out at least one forward-thinking city in America has obliterated these laws, opening its doors to tiny-house community developments and individuals alike.
Want to live in your own 500-square-foot house? Move to Walsenburg, Colorado.
This Denver Post article explains how the mayor of Walsenburg was skeptical at first, but he made the bold move as a means of attracting more homeowners to a ragged city and increasing its tax base. Instead of zoning a single subdivision to attract downsizers, Walsenburg now allows a house of any size to be built on any lot in town. It will be fascinating to see how the city develops in the coming years, and whether the change ushers in an economic recovery.
Don’t expect a lot of cities to follow suit right away – folks concerned with declining land value would scream bloody murder. But Walsenburg is definitely an example to watch.
Thanks to my western associate, Brett Silverstein.