Where Are Tiny Houses Legal in Maine

Seth Good­win, who tea­ches small house con­s­truc­tion at Edward Litt­le High School in Aub­urn, sees many bene­fits from the new legis­la­ti­on. Small non-whee­led hou­ses — a small finis­hed house that is built off-site and trans­por­ted to the site for per­ma­nent instal­la­ti­on. As a gene­ral rule, the­se struc­tures must fol­low the same rules as abo­ve when used as living space. Curr­ent­ly, most cities do not accept tiny hou­ses built and inspec­ted in other cities, but we are working on it, so stay tun­ed 🙂 Accor­ding to the bill‘s defi­ni­ti­on, a “small house” can­not exceed 400 squa­re met­res and is con­side­red a dwel­ling if it is built on a stan­dard foun­da­ti­on or wheel plat­form that can be pul­led by a vehic­le. Semi-trai­lers, cara­vans, recrea­tio­nal vehic­les or manu­fac­tu­red homes are not eli­gi­ble. The public hea­ring comes after homeow­ners ran into a road­block last year when the DMV stop­ped regis­tering tiny homes as RVs. It affects peo­p­le who are try­ing to get fun­ding for them. In July, Gover­nor Janet Mills signed L.D. 1530. This defi­nes what a small house is and gives the­se apart­ments the same sta­tus as a sin­gle-fami­ly home.

When the law comes into effect in the fall, homeow­ners will have a dif­fe­rent choice when choo­sing the type of home they want to live in. On Thurs­day, Febru­ary 6, the Trans­por­ta­ti­on Com­mit­tee of the Legis­la­ti­ve Assem­bly unani­mously appro­ved the 1981 GL 1981, “A Bill to Regu­la­te Small Homes,” by Sena­tor Mike Car­pen­ter, D‑Houlton, which defi­nes tiny homes in Maine law and allows them to be titled by the Bureau of Motor Vehic­les. With the new legis­la­ti­on, Maine joins a gro­wing list of sta­tes, inclu­ding Texas, Cali­for­nia, New York, Colo­ra­do, Mas­sa­chu­setts, Michi­gan, Flo­ri­da and Ore­gon, that allow tiny homes as pri­ma­ry resi­den­ces. As socie­ty moves away from the pan­de­mic life­style, the appeal of a tiny home seems obvious for one main reason: its afforda­bili­ty com­pared to lar­ger homes. 3. Muni­ci­pal inspec­tion. A tiny home can be pla­ced on land for 180 days wit­hout inspec­tion accor­ding to this sub­sec­tion. A small house can be used as an apart­ment. A small home may or may not be con­nec­ted to a uti­li­ty com­pa­ny, inclu­ding an out­let, water ser­vice or, if the tiny home is con­nec­ted to a water ser­vice, a sewer or sewer sys­tem of an adja­cent struc­tu­re. A church may inspect the fol­lo­wing for a small house: “They are tiny! They are 400 squa­re meters.

The who­le house 20 times 20 I mean, it will reach 400 squa­re feet or less. “From our expe­ri­ence working with cli­ents, it‘s not just that we have pre-pan­de­mic and post-pan­de­mic demo­gra­phics. It‘s very dif­fe­rent now. Pre­vious­ly, it was sin­gle women aged 50 and 60 who wan­ted to down­si­ze. Now that‘s it. They are young cou­ples. They are seni­ors. The­se are the peo­p­le who use the­se (small hou­ses) just for. Airbn­bs for ren­tal inco­me. They are small busi­ness owners. They are mas­sa­ge the­ra­pists,” she said.

Tiny House Alli­ance USA Edi­tor The future of Tiny is now! Janet Thome Foun­der and Pre­si­dent janet@tinyhouseallianceusa.org 509–345-2013 Foun­der of Tiny Por­ta­ble Cedar Cab­ins Alan Plum­mer, Maine‘s repre­sen­ta­ti­ve to the Ame­ri­can Tiny House Asso­cia­ti­on, who said he lives in a “litt­le house in a small town” out­side the Lewis­ton-Aub­urn area, said he cele­bra­tes the legis­la­ti­on and belie­ves it will be much easier. Own a small house as soon as this law beco­mes legal in the fall. One of the attrac­tions of small hou­ses is the abili­ty to place the small struc­tures on a whee­led trai­ler, crea­ting a mobi­le — or por­ta­ble — apart­ment. This gives occu­pants the oppor­tu­ni­ty to move when­ever the mood hits them. Plans for the small house Jonah Cro­well built in his par­ents‘ back­yard had to be adjus­ted to accom­mo­da­te a lar­ger trai­ler. Cro­well also added dor­mers on the roof. And­ree Kehn/Sun Jour­nal LD 1981 ensu­res tiny homes can be built and sold in Maine, repe­al­ing an ear­lier June 2019 Secre­ta­ry of Sta­te man­da­te pro­hi­bi­ting the issu­an­ce of titles and regis­tra­ti­ons for tiny homes. “This gives muni­ci­pa­li­ties per­mis­si­on to allow tiny hou­ses as pri­ma­ry or secon­da­ry resi­den­ces.” This bill sets stan­dards that muni­ci­pa­li­ties must fol­low with respect to tiny homes, which are struc­tures no lar­ger than 400 squa­re met­res, built on a frame or frame and desi­gned as per­ma­nent living spaces. The bill allows muni­ci­pa­li­ties to set rules for tiny homes that are less rest­ric­ti­ve than sta­te law, allows tiny homes on unde­ve­lo­ped and deve­lo­ped resi­den­ti­al lots, allows muni­ci­pal inspec­tion of cer­tain fea­tures of tiny homes, and pro­vi­des that tiny homes are asses­sed for pro­per­ty tax pur­po­ses after 180 days in cer­tain circumstances.

Natio­nal­ly, the tiny home indus­try is gro­wing in popu­la­ri­ty in demo­gra­phics, said Dani­el Fitz­pa­trick, pre­si­dent of the Tiny Home Indus­try Asso­cia­ti­on, who cal­led it a “boo­ming.” The reason this small house legis­la­ti­on is a game-chan­ger is that it‘s not legal to build tiny homes in many sta­tes. Many local govern­ments have mini­mum sizes for homes that pre­vent the use of a tiny home as a pri­ma­ry resi­dence. “The­re are only a handful of cities across the coun­try that direct­ly use tiny hou­ses,” says Alexis Ste­phens, natio­nal coor­di­na­tor for the Tiny House Asso­cia­ti­on. “There‘s a lot of inte­rest, but peo­p­le are con­fu­sed by zoning codes and bylaws and feel inti­mi­da­ted into going to the city govern­ment.” Maine – A bill regu­la­ting tiny homes “LD 1981”, spon­so­red by Sena­tor Micha­el Car­pen­ter, was signed into law by Gover­nor Janet T. Mills Brown on March 18, 2020. This bill pro­po­ses to defi­ne what a small house is and to allow title to a tiny house such as a trai­ler or sto­rage trai­ler. A law regu­la­ting the emer­gen­cy pre­am­ble of tiny hou­ses. Whee­led tiny homes are clas­si­fied as recrea­tio­nal vehic­les and must meet all appli­ca­ble RV stan­dards. If the tiny home has been occu­p­ied for more than 6 months, it is clas­si­fied as a per­ma­nent dwel­ling and must meet the lot and faça­de requi­re­ments appli­ca­ble to a resi­den­ti­al unit. “Under the recent­ly signed sta­te law, we allow peo­p­le to place a small home any­whe­re a sin­gle-fami­ly home is allo­wed,” said Jim­my Buz­zell, land use plan­ner for the City of Lewiston.

“Any pie­ce of land whe­re you are allo­wed to set up a fami­ly home, you can set up a small house. They must meet sin­gle-fami­ly home stan­dards and Maine sta­te law requi­re­ments. “The tiny house move­ment has gai­ned trac­tion over the past deca­de. With housing shorta­ges, rising housing cos­ts, and the move toward sus­taina­bi­li­ty, tiny homes make per­fect sen­se. Now, Maine has pas­sed a law that will make owning a small home much easier. “My opi­ni­on on this bill, par­ti­cu­lar­ly at the local level whe­re they‘re ope­ning up to smal­ler buil­dings on lots, is that we‘re going to have an easier time,” Good­win said. “It‘s a plus for peo­p­le on a bud­get. I think if they are well built, attrac­ti­ve and in the right place, that‘s a plus.

In anti­ci­pa­ti­on of this new law, THIA Pre­si­dent Dan Fitz­pa­trick work­ed clo­se­ly with Cor­ri­ne Wat­son when she was shut down becau­se the sta­te no lon­ger wan­ted to aut­ho­ri­ze her pro­duct. For­t­u­na­te­ly, we were able to appro­ve a 1981 bill that defi­nes mobi­le homes and pro­vi­des for the abili­ty to move them on public roads, be titled, cer­ti­fied and used as habi­ta­ble units. “All of our buil­ders nati­on­wi­de are very busy buil­ding homes, and more and more sta­tes and muni­ci­pa­li­ties are beco­ming small house fri­end­ly,” Fitz­pa­trick said. “Con­su­mers buy them and install them in cities and ham­lets across the U.S. and do it very well.” “The Per­mis­si­on to Pro­vi­de Afforda­ble Housing in tiny homes Act will make life easier for peo­p­le in tiny homes and help cla­ri­fy how com­mu­ni­ties can allow tiny homes in their communities.