11 Ingenious Tiny Homes That Rocked Our World

skoolie house

Each year in the United States, the number of people choosing to live in small spaces continues to grow. What is driving their decision? For many, it is one big reason: economic freedom.

Here is a list of the most popular compact dwellings we featured in 2015. Each one exemplifies the money-saving benefits associated with tiny house living.

  • 01 of 11

    This Tiny Castle Will Let You Love Off-the-Grid

    The Transforming Truck Castle
    Living Big in a Tiny House

    The Transforming Truck Castle took some mighty creative thinking to design. When parked it unfurls into an off-the-grid fortress. When it is time to hit the pavement, it folds back into a street-legal vehicle.

    The tiny abode is loaded with money savings ideas like energy-generating solar panels that kick electricity bills to the curb. Our favorite built-in feature is the working bathtub on the rooftop patio. 

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  • 02 of 11

    A Prefab That Can Withstand Wicked Weather

    Sturdy home by Cubicco

    Home insurance deductibles on weather and natural disaster-related claims are no joke. They can cost homeowners thousands of dollars. But that would not be much of a concern if you lived in this sturdy little house by Cubicco. It was designed to withstand hurricanes, blizzards, and even earthquakes. 

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  • 03 of 11

    You Can Live in a Midcentury Grain Silo

    Grain silo home exterior

    Are your heating and cooling costs too damn high? We got three words for you: Spray foam insulation. That's the secret ingredient that whittles down the power bills for this modern tiny house that was made using a midcentury grain silo.

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  • 04 of 11

    Skoolies Rule

    Skoolie home

    School bus conversions are not a new thing. But their popularity is indeed growing among tiny house enthusiasts looking to DIY an abode on the cheap. If you're interested in learning more about the skoolie lifestyle, you can read how to transform a standard 66-seater into a home.

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  • 05 of 11

    You Can Live in an Egg Shaped Pod


    There are a gazillion "concept" houses online that never get built. We are glad to report that the Ecocapsule is not one of them. In fact, you can preorder the "exclusive series" version of this portable off-the-grid home right now, or you can wait until the "affordable series" is available. 

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  • 06 of 11

    The Cheapest Airbnb Rental Ever

    pocket sized home
    Image courtesy of Airbnb

    A tiny house like the One SQM House located in Berlin, Germany can make your next vacation way more affordable. This pocket-sized adobe can be all yours for less than two dollars per night.

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  • 07 of 11

    Live Rent Free and Off The Grid

    Wohnwagen exterior

    The Wohnwagen is a self-sufficient mobile home loaded with features that make living off the grid no biggie. Our favorite is the green roof that harvests both rain and greywater.

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  • 08 of 11

    Tiny Houses are Great for Families

    Tiny house mini motives

    We all know that raising kids isn't cheap. But you may not know that your largest child care expense is housing. The Mini Motives house cost only $12,000 to build, and it is allowing one family to live blissfully mortgage free.

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  • 09 of 11

    You Can Build This Hobbit Home in Three Days

    Green Magic "Hobbit" homes
    Green Magic Homes

    Earth shelter homes (aka Hobbit houses) are constructed underground, so they stay warm in the winter and cool in the summer. However, buried buildings like these when done right are expensive because they require a lot of extra work to make them mold and water resistant. One innovated building company solved this problem, and now they are offering an affordable Tolkien-esque abode you can build with a couple of friends in three days.

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  • 10 of 11

    Tiny House Living Makes Homeownership a Reality

    Tiny Family House
    Tiny Family House

    Hari and Karl Berzins were hit hard by the recession. In 2008, they lost not only their business but also their house. Living in a compact dwelling rent-free for several years made it possible for them to rebuild their lives. They created a new business that helps others build tiny houses, and they were able to save enough money to construct a larger dwelling that's both clutter and mortgage free. 

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  • 11 of 11

    A Tiny House You Can Almost Build

    tiny home you can build
    Monarch Tiny Homes

    Building a teeny house from scratch yourself can save you a bundle, but it is not an option that is on the table for most people. Monarch Tiny Homes gets that so they created a dwelling called Half/Half House that splits the difference.