Is the ‘Tiny Home’ movement finally catching on in Britain?

Guest Blog Post by David Blackhurst

For those who don’t know what it’s all about… There is a global trend which is growing in popularity around the world. The UK is now catching up! The basic premise is around minimalism, what do you actually ‘need’ to live and be comfortable?

When you start to strip away the shiny baubles, what we actually need/use on a regular basis surprises most people. I lived on a narrowboat for three years, but soon had to adapt to the ‘limited space’. At first I had things in storage, but over time I came to realise that (after six months) I hadn’t actually needed anything which was in the storage unit I was paying for.

After a while I realised just how liberating it really is to ‘downsize’. My interest in ‘streamlining my belongings’ eventually led me down a path which meant that I discovered the ‘Tiny Home’ movement. A proper house, just with a smaller footprint and clever use of the space inside!

THF Layout 3

After refitting two narrowboats myself, I knew just what was possible inside a small space with just a little bit of clever thinking. It wasn’t long before I realised that using this modular build technology would mean that they would be a wonderful solution to help solve a range of problems.

My interest grew to the point where I decided that I wanted to create something very special to help people. Using this technology to provide genuinely affordable homes for people to rent or buy. But, how to make them ecological too?

Let’s hyphenate that word for a moment; ‘eco-logical’. It makes sense to go the ‘eco’ route, it’s logical. OK, in the short term, some may argue that it’s not always the cheapest option, but if the cost is not in your own pocket, that means (in most cases) that cost is reaped from the planet.

THF Exterior Image

The true cost then could be many times more over time than the few extra % it would have cost to go the ‘eco-logical’ route in the first place. When the founding members of the Tiny Home Foundation management team first sat around a table to brainstorm ideas, ‘green values’ were one of the first things which were discussed.

image courtesy of FML Architects
Image courtesy of FML Architects

We wanted to be able to offer a UK product (modular home) at a genuinely affordable price (without costing the earth). We use ‘UpCycled’ Steel as the core structure for our purpose built Tiny Homes. We then ensure that they are extremely well insulated. We do this for two reasons, firstly comfort, a well insulated home will be cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter. Secondly when the home does require heating the small space and excellent thermal efficiency means that they do not require very much power at all to keep them toasty warm.

One bed & Studio A
THF Pod layouts

Beyond this, we also offer to our customers the option of a solar roof, a ‘green roof’ and even living walls as cladding if they wish. We want to be able to give our customers the option of creating something very special which can blend in with the surroundings.

We each need somewhere to call home, but that doesn’t have to cost the Earth..!

In cooperation with the Tiny Home Foundation, my readers can benefit from a free carpet upgrade if they decide to follow this route!

Tiny Home Foundation Pods
THF Layout 1
Studio B