What’s smaller — a micro home or a tiny house? The size of each classification varies, but tiny houses are smaller. A structure is considered a tiny house when it is less than 400 sq. ft., but legally meets the minimum dwelling size set by the International Building Code (IBC): 200 square feet.
Most people who are new to the tiny or micro living movement have to take a step back and understand what a micro home is before they can compare these dwellings to tiny houses and other miniature floor plans.
What is a micro home?
We answer that question and explore the benefits of micro living in this post.
To talk to a modular building expert about micro home design and construction, reach out to VESTA Modular today.
While tiny houses have been around for decades, the concept of micro homes is new and exact definitions can be a bit difficult to pin down on a Google search.
Micro homes are the “next step up” from tiny houses; they range from 400 to approximately 800 sq. ft. and must encompass an independent kitchen, bathroom, and at least one window. These dwellings can be modular, pre-fabricated, or custom builds, and use materials and finishes comparable to traditional homes. They are spatially-evolved from apartment living with no shared walls, ceilings, or floors and each unit has an independent outdoor living area such as a porch or piece of land.
Even with less space, micro homes pack all of the basic living essentials of a standard home and come fully equipped with the same level of electric, water and sewer access as standard homes.
Now that you understand what a micro home is, you may be wondering why people would choose to live micro. Let’s take a look!
Now that we’ve answered the question, “What is a micro home?”, we can look to the many benefits of micro homes. Micro living has become a lifestyle and a movement for having less and doing more. Residents are also loving these smaller, minimalist spaces for their eco friendliness and low-cost utilities.
Here are five benefits of micro living.
Depending on location and material quality, the average cost per square foot to build a standard home ranges from $125 to $300. The cost per square foot to build a micro home is actually on the higher end of that spectrum.
While the cost per square foot to build or buy a micro home might be higher than the cost per square foot to build a traditional home, the savings come from having significantly less square feet of total home space. If you have a truly efficient and fully equipped micro home that suits your most prominent needs, you don’t need the extra square footage of a traditional home.
Saving on the square footage will give you extra wiggle room in your budget, allowing you to choose from higher-end appliances and furnishings. If you only have to purchase a couple of windows, why not spring for the double-paned sliding window with custom blinds? If you only need one couch, you could opt for that down-filled style from the high-end retailer you’ve been dreaming about.
It takes a lot less energy to heat and cool a small space than it does to heat and cool a large space. That’s a fact. Add to this the fact that it also takes a lot fewer resources and less gas- hogging construction equipment to build a micro home, and you have a recipe for greener living.
Micro homes take the principles of the tiny home movement to the next level. People are turning away from waste and excess and focusing more on what matters. And with more people living alone than ever before, who needs all the extra space of a traditional home, anyway.
When you are ready to build a new home, you’re naturally excited and anxious. You probably want to get it finished as quickly as possible. Micro homes are hard to beat in terms of construction time. Professional home builders can construct a micro home in as little as 2-3 weeks. Meanwhile, the average traditional home takes seven to twelve months to build.
Modular construction occurs off-site in warehouse conditions. It involves building repeatable modules while using the same materials and level of quality as traditional, on-site construction. It’s perfect for micro homes.
Because micro homes are so small, they lend themselves to easy transport from warehouses to their final destinations making the process even faster.
Casata is working with the modular construction experts at VESTA Modular to develop advanced micro home communities in cities across the United States. Their independent micro homes provide the best of both worlds: residents get the privacy and solitude of an independent home as well as easy access to like-minded neighbors and community amenities like co-working spaces, fitness centers, pools and exercise trails.
Learn more about the Casata project and how micro homes are being used to build better communities.
What is a micro home, really? It might just be the solution to fulfilling your development needs.
VESTA Modular specializes in modular construction and contractor services. We put a premium on cost-saving modular construction strategies and custom solutions, and can build your micro homes or apartment buildings efficiently. To speak with a modular micro home expert on the VESTA Modular team, give us a call at (817) MODULAR or contact us online.