Tiny House Movement

Land for our Tiny House

We are almost 1 month away from (hopefully) moving into our tiny house!

Before that, there are some important things that need to be addressed. One BIG thing is where we are going to put (park) the house.

We live in San Francisco, so I already know it will be impossible to find anywhere in the city to park the house. However, we are still planning on staying in the Bay Area and there are opportunities of this sort available to us north/east/south of San Francisco. We are open to anywhere that is about a 45 minute drive to the city.

Besides reaching out to people on this website, Jay has created a Facebook page to reach out to our network of friends. Our hope is to find someone in the area that has land to rent for us to park our tiny house. Word of mouth is key. We have also created a Craigslist want ad that will hopefully generate some responses.

We will be needing the land by the end of September, beginning of October. We are looking to pay around $300-$500/month rent for the land.

NO RV PARKS. But we are open to anywhere “green” as long as it is within 45 minutes of San Francisco area.

What’s best about our tiny house is that it is completely self sufficient and will require NO hookups. We just need the land to park it on. Since we will be off the grid, move in will be easy peasy and we will be the perfect tenants, requiring nothing but the land under our wheels.

Some features of our tiny house include:

  • Solar Panels (for our electricity needs)
  • Rainwater Catchment (for watering plants, yard upkeep)
  • Propane Gas (for stove/oven, on demand hot water heater)
  • Wood Stove (for heat)
  • Composting Toilet (urine diverting, no water or electricity needed)
  • Compost Tumbler (for food/paper scrap trash)
  • Freshwater Tanks (for showering, hand/dishwashing)
  • Branched Drain Grey Water System (for used water from shower/sinks to water basins of plants/trees outside)

Our design for the house was inspired by the Tall Man’s Tiny House. So even though our house is still in-progress, this might give you an idea of what it will look like when it’s finished.


49 thoughts on “Land for our Tiny House

    • hi josh. we prefer not to be in an RV park because we will have medium sized very active dog and would like her to have a yard to run around in. That is just our preference for the lifestyle we would like. πŸ™‚

  1. I’m a huge fan of Tallman’s Tiny House– it’s one of the best designs I’ve seen; so great that you’re using it as a template! I’ll be curious to hear how the FB & CL routes work for finding a location as I’ll be tackling that task in four or five months (without the benefit of being completely off the grid at first– kudos on accomplishing that)!

    • So far, we are getting a lot of traffic through the FB routes but no leads and some bites on CL. From the interest we have received and sought out, there were promising leads but it was more of an issue with work commutes being too long especially when taking traffic into consideration during rush hour times. Unfortunately, that leaves us in a situation where location-wise we have to be picky. If it weren’t for how picky we need to be, we would have more options. We also put postcards and fliers up in areas where we wish to live and that has gotten us a lead or two as well. I wish you luck in finding a location in the future! πŸ™‚

  2. Hi –
    The tiny home is beautiful and a great idea. I just moved to the Bay Area from Chicago and am planning on doing exactly what you guys did. Have you found some land to park? That will be my biggest obstacle because I too will want to be close to the city.

    • I wonder if its possible to go into a pot like purchase on a piece of land in the city and we basically park our houses there along with 3-4 other tiny houses. Micro RV park pretty much.

  3. It would be cool to go in on a plot of land near the city with 3-4 other small house owners/ or soon to be small house owners. I would be interested in creating micro small house communities with zero footprint.

  4. Hi there,
    My husband and I are new to SF and we’re currently in the planning stages of our tiny home.

    Our needs list looks identical to yours! We also have a herding dog [mix] and want some space for her to roam, we’re looking to spend between $300-$500 per month, and we’re looking into systems to run completely off grid as well!

    Did you find land in the Bay? We’re hoping to find somewhere close to a Bart line so we can still work in the city.

    Also, have you done any writing on the details of your systems? I’m really interested in how everything is running with water and electricity!

    Thanks for any info you have to share!

    • Hi Vyana. We did find land in the Bay. It takes a bit of work to find the right spot especially if you are specific about where (i.e. close to bart, etc). We had someone help us with the plumbing/electric so we wouldnt do it wrong as it is an important part of the house. We have installed the solar panels on our roof but still need to install the rest of the system to get it running. As for water, it will be a while before we can do a rainwater catchment system. We are utilizing a mulch basin for our greywater runoff. Good luck on your tiny house!!

      • Did you guys end up north? The photos look like Marin. How did you end up finding your spot? Sorry for all of the questions. It’s just so exciting to see somebody doing exactly what we imagine!

  5. Lovely looking house! Would love to see the inside! Any luck finding a space? I too live in SF & have thought about a Tiny House, but placement seems to be the main issue….

    • Yes we did find a space. It was more difficult finding something for us because we were pretty specific with where we wanted to relocate to. We did get many offers from people interested in renting us land but we did a lot of leg work for it. However, finding a spot in SF is probably not feasible but a spot in the bay area is more doable.

      • I live in Berkeley and very badly want to purchase a tiny home, but don’t know if I’ll be able to find a spot to park it in the berkeley/oakland/el cerrito area. Any suggestions on how to find a spot or meet-up with other prospective tiny home owners to form a community?

      • We posted fliers, postcards in areas we were interested in parking our house as well as posting religiously on craigslist. If you are more flexible with the area you want to live in, the easier it is to find a place.

  6. Hi Best to you:) I’m just now going through some of the same things with my tiny home. I finally found land for it and now have to take on the task of moving it from Los Gatos to Fairfield. My question for you is: Did you hire someone to move it for you or did you just rent a truck and move it yourself? Any guidance is greatly appreciated. Laura

    • Hi Laura. We hired someone with experience in moving this type of thing. We figured that you can never be too careful and didnt want to take the risk of doing it ourselves. I hope your move went well!

      • Thanks I did end up hiring someone who knew a lot about moving RV’s and had the right size truck. Move was uneventful and I am on my land. I am interested in connecting with folks who want to buy land together if you find yourself in that situation. Keep in touch. Laura

      • I too am interested in going in on a parcel of land with others. Safer and more cheerful to live in small communities rather than alone. We can look out for one another that way while still maintaining privacy. Am interested in something ideal and near the city, but still within nature, possibly with views/water nearby? Maybe we should create a group on Facebook to keep one another updated. I am moving to the bay area soon, and am also looking into Seattle as well, since global warming seems to be making the city warmer every year.

      • Please feel free to keep in touch by email. I also joined a few meetups in the east bay and farther east where my Tiny Home is now parked. culturedsfatgmail.com

    • I would start by posting on places like craigslist and also posting fliers/putting postcards in coffee shops, public notice boards, etc of areas you wish to live in. It takes some patience this way but it worked for us and we are very happy with where we ended up. Good luck!!

  7. Hello! Clearly you are quite a bit farther along with your project than I am, but I have quickly figured out the limitations of alternative living options in the Bay Area. However, after many discussions, a friend and I have decided to invite all to explore the issues via Facebook. It would be a gift to us if you would join our (very new) discussion by posting your experience!

  8. It’s been awhile since you have posted. Can you give us all an update? I’m so happy for you. It gives me a great feeling when I see people actually making this work.

    • life has been busy but we are still working on finishing the tiny house. just posted a new update though. it has been difficult because we do not have internet connection at the house so we havent been able to post much. more posts to come hopefully. (:

  9. Pingback: USGBC Green Living Member Circle Green Home Tours « Green Cincinnati Education Advocacy

  10. Hello Jay and Jen!

    My name is Addison Ball and I am a Junior at Tamalpais High School in Mill Valley, California. I am a part of the AIM film program (Academy of Integrated Humanities and New Media) at Tam High. For this program, my group and I are making a documentary about The Tiny House Movement. We are intrigued by your investment in this movement, especially on the local level. We would love to get in contact with you learn more about your involvement with Tiny Houses and potentially interview you!

    Let me know if you would be interested. Or if there is anyone else you could refer us to we would greatly appreciate it.

    Feel free to respond back to this email or you can contact me by phone at (415)226-8577.

    Thank you!

    Addison Ball

  11. My husband and I are travel nurses and are coming to San Fran soon! We are also in the process of ordering our tiny home (the lazy way out, I know). I was wondering if you had an input on how you found land for your tiny home? We as well would prefer private land and not an RV Park! Thank you so much and I love your blog!


    • We posted an ad on craigslist to rent a piece of land and got great leads that way. I would recommend trying that and seeing how it pans out for you. Thank you for your kind words!

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