Alexis Stephens and Christian Parsons are traveling with a purpose: to document tiny home dwellers and the legal obstacles they face. So far, they’ve dragged their quaint little tiny home 25,000 miles, interviewed countless people, and put together a series of documentaries on YouTube called, “Living Tiny Legally.” Their project is called Tiny House Expedition, which you can follow on Instagram here.
Alexis thinks more and more cities are on the way to legalizing tiny homes, which are normally considered RVs, or can’t seem to pass all the various codes associated with home-building.
“There’s a positive ripple effect that’s happening,” she said. “Very few cities want to put their neck on the line, but once the precedent is set, it’s much easier to start the conversation in other cities. Believe it or not, Los Angeles is strongly considering legalizing tiny houses as accessory dwelling units. That would be historic for a major city like that.”
She said interesting things are happening in the small town of Spur, Texas, which has declared itself “tiny home friendly.” In that town, tiny home dwellers are allowed to buy a lot and put their tiny home there, as long as they take off the wheels and the axel. So far, the city has sold 30 lots, with ten tiny house residents now.
“It’s a dying town, and this is part of a revitalization effort to attract more residents,” Alexis said. “The city has the infrastructure for 3,000 people, but have just under 1,000 people currently living there. I’m really interested to watch them grow because it would be feasible for tiny house residents to be a majority there, which would be funny.”
Alexis has lived in a tiny home for years now, and hopes eventually, there’s a nationwide shift in the conversation.
“The living tiny legally series is a passion project,” she said. “We sincerely believe that legal acceptance is necessary to give more people the opportunity to live tiny safely and without the fear of eviction. This is crucial for housing in America. More options are needed, so this is our public service. The funny thing is, there’s so much talk about affordable housing, or attainable housing as I call it, but there’s very little action to make something happen. We want to empower people into action. There’s a real housing crisis across the country and its going to take some creative thinking to solve it.”
Check out the documentaries Alexis and Christian have put together so far: