With the economy taking its toll on the pocket books of many Americans, tiny homes are on the rise. People all over the country are seeking a way to rid themselves of financial hard times by eliminating utility bills, mortgages, taxes and just live off the grid. A tiny home is a perfect solution, however, new laws are making it harder and harder for people to live the self-sustainable life style they choose.
Anything under 500 square feet or less is considered to be a tiny home. It offers shelter and room for the most necessities, letting home owners always get from all the extra and unnecessary expenses of owning and maintaining a large home and enjoy a simple life. However, it seems the government is doing everything possible to restrict off grid living. Zoning laws and regulations may soon require tiny houses to meet the standards of a recreational vehicle, making it impossible to market them for permanent living.
In addition to strict zoning laws, many home owner associations are banning the use of solar panels, a useful resource that many tiny home owners turn to while living off the grid. Texas, California, and Florida are especially strict with these laws because home owners associations reign over the majority of the homes and properties in these states. Homeowners everywhere are being penalized and forced to remove solar panels because they do not comply with the strict guidelines set by the HOA. The solar power industry has become practically obsolete in Nevada after state taxes on solar power customers went up by 40% in January.
COLLECTING RAIN WATER
Another natural resource people turn to while living off the grid is rainwater. Tiny home owners often collect and filter rainwater for personal use, that can be anything from flushing a toilet to watering crops. New laws will restrict the practice of collecting rain water, and many states have already outlawed it completely. The penalties for breaking these laws can be as harsh as jail time.
Even community gardens are under attack from the strict HOA. Community gardens are being shut down, and homeowners are being banned from growing and harvesting their healthy food, simply because it is a threat to the food industry. The government is taking away the freedom to use our natural resources and regulate tiny homes, makes it seem as though they are trying to ban off grid living completely. However, even with the strict laws and regulations, many tiny home owners continue to live self-sustainable life styles.