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Tiny home generates big interest in Regina

Click to play video: 'Tiny home drawing crowds, movement just taking root in Regina'
Tiny home drawing crowds, movement just taking root in Regina
Tiny home drawing crowds, movement just taking root in Regina – Mar 18, 2016

REGINA – The Spring Home Show is full of eye-catching displays, but it’s a tiny display that is generating so much interest people lined up to see it.

Robinson Residentials is showcasing their first tiny home, The Dragonfly. It features a loft bed, drawbridge-like decks, and ample windows to make the 160 square foot space feel larger.

Company co-owner John Robinson said designing the home was a lesson in efficiently using space and examining different building styles.

He said that the minimalist home only allows for minimal possessions.

“If you’re going to want to live in a tiny home you’re going to have to go through everything you own, and find out how much you love it,” Robinson said.

“Because there simply isn’t room for a lot of stuff.”

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Kits to build Robinson tiny homes start at $25,000, but if you’re looking to build in Regina you’ll have to find somewhere else. Current zoning laws don’t allow tiny homes.

“Currently within our regulations we require a certain size for a residential home, of course tiny homes are smaller than that,” explained the city’s director of development services Louise Folk.

Regina has a minimum standard for main lot homes being 800 square feet. Tiny homes are also too small to be considered for the city’s laneway and garden suite pilot project. Most tiny home utility hook-ups, which are usually similar to an RV’s, also pose a challenge.

The majority of tiny homes are under 200 square feet, but seacan retailer Big Steel Box is working around this. The company, which has a branch in White City, is working on releasing pre-fabricated shipping container homes that will fit most municipality’s zoning laws.

However, for most locals who were checking out The Dragon Fly this isn’t an issue. They didn’t see it as a place to live full time, but more as a recreation destination.

“It’s something you’d probably take to a lake as a cottage versus building it yourself,” Dave Kramer said.

“If you have any thoughts to camping it’s like ‘glamping’, but beyond that. I think it’s a great option if you want to build something for the summer,” Kavita Patel said.

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In a departure from those seeking a summer getaway, a marketing strategist from the University of Regina’s faculty of business administration believes tiny homes could take off with millennials who are looking for a cheaper housing option.

“It’s more about style of life and more about freedom,” Dwight Heinrichs said.

“They don’t want to be saddled with a massive mortgage and working to live.”

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