27 Oct 2014

Tiny homes, big movement

From Labour Day, 10:38 am on 27 October 2014

Andrew Morrison s tiny home
Andrew Morrison's tiny home.

The dream of owning your own home is increasingly becoming out of reach for many.

The national median house price is $420,000, but you can buy a three bedroom property in either Ohai in the South Island and Murupara in the North Island for $39,000. But that's still out of reach for some and instead of dreaming of big homes, many people are just adapting, by going small... tiny even.

Tiny homes is a growing global movement. They're often built on trailers and can be portable, often getting a ound building regulations and rents. They can cost as little as $22,000 to build, even less if you're using recycled materials like Christchurch student Stefan Cook.

On tinyhousemap.com hundreds pop up in the States, a small few in England and even some in Japan, including a family who are using a tiny home as temporary accommodation following the 2011 tsunami. In New Zealand only a small handful pop up.

In Auckland, Brett Sutherland who appeared on Campbell Live a few weeks ago built his own tiny home, and parked it on his friend's seven acre lot. But the council says he's breaching the density code and have asked him to move on.

Andrew Morrison from Tiny House Build decided to chase his American dream by downsizing to a tiny home. He designed and built his eight foot six wide, 13 foot five tall, 28 foot long, tiny home, that comes with two loft areas, a composting toilet and full sized kitchen. It's completely transportable and cost less than a deposit on a New Zealand house.

He and his wife Gabriella got rid of 90 percent of their belongings and now live in the tiny house on a section of land in Southern Oregon.

Gallery: Andrew and Gabriella's tiny home

Morrison isn't a "claustrophile". Rather he's chosen this lifestyle to minimise their footprint on the world.

He spoke to Colin Peacock on Labour Day. Colin started by asking whether he feels for his Kiwi counterpart who is battling with the council.

Watch a tour of Andrew and Gabriella's house.