If You Thought Tiny Houses Were Great, Wait Until You Hear About Tiny-House Villages

It's easy to see why tiny houses have been gaining in popularity in recent years; they're adorable, affordable, often better for the environment, and easy to use move. Kansas State researchers Brandon Irwin and Julia Day are now also saying that they're healthier for the people who live in them. They cite an increased sense of community and greater physical activity as the reasons.

They explained to the Wichita Eagle, "We think (living in a tiny village) does a few things for one's health, including creating a better sense of community, satisfying people's basic needs for relationships, offering affordable housing options and encouraging physical activity through community gardens and walking to urban establishments."

The biggest hurdle to building tiny-house villages is currently where to put them. Zoning laws meant to keep out mobile homes, which are considered undesirable, also apply to these small living structures. Those at Kansas State aren't deterred though. They believe that there's real benefit to tiny houses, both because they provide affordable housing and also because they facilitate a healthier lifestyle, and they're eager to study them more.

Thanks to a grant from the Department of Ecology, researchers will be able to work on tiny-house villages full time starting next September. "We want to immerse ourselves in those places and learn about how things work there," Irwin told the Wichita Eagle.