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Tiny House Math

Okay, don’t start hyperventilating. I am not talking about Math math, but rather following logic to come to a decision. This is often what I use to make decisions and sometimes it’s so lightening fast (and often stupid) that I have to track my steps after the fact to make sense of the Super Human Speed with which I came to a conclusion. I even made pretty charts for you to follow along, although truth be told I only really made them because I have been trying to find an excuse to test out Scapple by Literature and Latte. I could have made them prettier but when I got around to putting cute icons in I ran out of oomph, so you’ll have to burn them into your mind and add your own graphics in your head to really made them pop. PS: Unicorns made everything more engaging.

When considering moving to Santa Rosa to be closer to my parents and family, I started to get a lot of anxiety looking at apartments. I mentioned the rents jumped within a few months and suddenly when I added rent, deposit, utilities and pet deposits I was looking at $1200-1500 per month for small (300-500 square feet) apartments sporting depressing gray industrial carpet and the type of appliances you are never quite sure of. Then there’s the whole “neighbor from hell” potential. It’s been far too long since I lived in an apartment, and the last one I did live in sported a thief and an unstable man next door who had a habit of yelling with a gun in his hand during fights with his girlfriend. Granted, she was deaf, but did she really need to see the gun? Yelling doesn’t do much if the person you are yelling at is deaf, does it? Was the gun punctuation? It would just be a matter of time before a stray bullet would careen through the wall and hit someone in my unit.

Flow Chart Interlude

Tiny House Math Decision Flow Chart

Next I thought about buying a condo. Price range started at a reasonable $90-120k for a small unit. This means I would have to finance quite a bit of the purchase, pay utilities and Homeowner’s Association (HOA) fees each month. In the right situation, with a very low HOA fee, this might be possible but then I asked around. I’ve never lived in a condo before so I was unaware of how an HOA worked or that if something needed upgrading or fixing in the community it would be up to the homeowners to pay for it. Again, the neighbor issue (see apartment). I could get an upstairs unit which at least would cut down issues from an upstairs neighbor walking loudly, but if I am struggling with health climbing stairs with groceries might become an issue. Mostly I wondered if I really wanted to spend that much money on a place I didn’t really love?

Next, I thought about townhouses. See apartments and condos.

A manufactured home would land me in the same place I am now. I own the equity in my house but can only get to it via selling it because it is difficult to get loans without owning land or having a foundation. Also I still would need to pay lot space which seemed to hover around the $900 mark for non-senior parks – about the same as what I pay now. While I enjoy living on the Columbia River, the quality of the park has gone down by far, we get fewer services in our contract than ever before and the lot space (aka rent for the land your house sits on) keeps going up and up. I am not totally ruling it out, but not crazy about it either.

An RV or 5th Wheel or Trailer might be an option. The cons being the toxic materials and off gassing. I am already health challenged and have become chemically more sensitive to many things. An Airstream style conversion would rock. Potentially a long Toy Hauler with the back area converted into my office area is intriguing (go back to toxic materials). This doesn’t quite have the homey charm of a Tiny House and customization for small space living can be tricky.

Bus Conversions intrigues me – the biggest drawback being it’s a bus and the insulation can be wanting. Did I mention it’s a bus? I wonder if I live in a bus and I am in my 40’s does that mean I have to burn incense and wear hippie moo moos while braiding my graying hair?

Tiny House. YAY!


Maybe this simplified flow chart will clear it up for you.

Tiny House Decision Flow Chart Simplified

I’ll cover the rest of my fuzzy logic…. Sometime…. Maybe… Ummm… Or not…




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