September 4, 2020

Page 24

g i B e v i L IN A TINY HOME


“There is no compromise when it comes to your personal safety and the performance of your home”

igger isn’t always better as evidenced by the growing tiny home revolution.

Offering less debt, more personal leisure time and the freedom to relocate without the stress or financial burden of selling a home, tiny homes are presenting an opportunity for a better quality home [higher end finishes, upgraded insulation, exteriors], a lower carbon footprint, and financial freedom. Utilility bills do not typically exceed $100 a month including electrical, water and gas. Tiny homes use minimal amounts of each due to their compact size and excellent energy efficiency. Scott Smythe of Treehugger Tiny Homes adds that tiny homes can easily be built off-grid with solar panels and composting or incinerating toilets eliminating utility bills all together. Founding his business in 2019, with over 25 years in the residential and commercial construction industry, Smythe brings with him a passion for the movement, knowledge of environmentally conscious building practices, and a history of high standards and attention to detail. Smythe warns those considering a tiny home lifestyle to be cautious of online information touting the ability to DIY when building. “Like any structure, elements like framing, plumbing, insulation, electrical and roofing should only be done by professionals. Poor workmanship can not only compromise the structure of your tiny home, but also the safety of yourself and others when transporting, and in the long run end up costing the homeowner more.”


Summer/Fall 2020

P rairie Living

While most people may assume the revolution is being driven by a young group of environmentalists, in reality it’s a very diverse group of people that choose to live in tiny homes for a variety of reasons. “I’ve actually seen the largest response from the 60+ population and snowbirds.“ Smythe comments. This is not a surprise considering how many retiring couples downsize and transition to RV living and travelling. The tiny home, built on a road-safe trailer, is a great alternative to living in your vehicle, and enhances the lifestyle of retirement offering the ability to move around, but still have a home. The other portion of this group are looking strictly to downsize their permanet residence or are wanting to place it on family property so they can have their own space while still having the assistance they may need from their family. With limitless opportunities to customize your home, they can be used as primary residences, temporary residences, in-law suites or rentals. They are also growing in popularity for retail and food trailers based on the flexibility to pop-up anywhere, and save costly store-front leases. Scott also adds that the ability to customize is limitless. You can go as high end as you like or as off-grid as you like. The homes can be tailor-built to suit your lifestyle exactly. He has the ability to custom build and ship anywhere in Western Canada. “We can also do shell packages so if homeowners want to do some the work themselves and put their own touch on it, they have that option.”

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