NewsOur Colorado


Tiny homes are attracting people young and old from all walks of life

'Our Colorado' explores another way of living
Posted at 3:58 PM, Jun 23, 2018
and last updated 2018-07-02 16:46:53-04

Editor's Note: 'Our Colorado' stories help natives and newcomers navigate the challenges related to our rapidly growing state, including real estate and development, homelessness, transportation and more. To comment on this or other 'Our Colorado' stories, email us at OurCO@TheDenverChannel.comSee more 'Our Colorado' stories here.

ADAMS COUNTY, Colo. -- The Colorado Tiny House Festival returned to Brighton for a second year. This time around, it was (ironically) bigger - with more homes for visitors to see.

In our Colorado, there's an effort to make homes more affordable for the average person who calls this state home. Tiny houses seem to be the growing trend as residents work to navigate the challenges of Colorado's growing popularity.

There's also no guidelines to who buys them. Denver7 talked to two people on completely different sides of the spectrum: A baby boomer and a married mom with twins. Both live in tiny houses.

"At this point in my life, going tiny was the best solution moving forward," said Ferrar, the baby boomer who explained how it was mainly a financial decision for her. "Do I buy medication or do I pay the utility bill?" she asked. "By going tiny the expenses get minimalized."

In Colorado's expensive housing market, finances seem to be the driver for most people looking to go tiny.

That's where the married mom with twins comes in. Ally Shaay has been living with her husband and twins in their tiny house for six months.

"We're a family of four, we both have Master's degrees. We chose this life," she said.

For Shaay, it was also money that prompted the decision to live in a tiny house. Now she wants it to become standard in all states. She wants governmental roadblocks to disappear so tiny houses can have permanent places to stay.

"I hope everyone does it who wants to do it so states are forced to create places to live legally with our tiny homes," she said.

Denver7 asked three local cities for their rules on tiny houses. In Aurora, a tiny house is like any other small, single-family home. It has to be put on a lot, meet city requirements and have city water and sewer.

In Lakewood, tiny house are treated the same way as RV's so you can only live in one spot for two weeks. 

In Castle Rock, tiny houses are like any other residential structure. They must meet the same planning and zoning requirements and comply with all building codes.