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    Building codes and storage

    Looking for any insight on codes and ordinances while in the building phase. I live in Montana, and have struggled to find good resources. I have considered calling the county I live in to question them on rv ordinances in driveways in town. Seems everyone has one parked on the street or in their driveway.
    ​​​​​What about tiny homes in construction? Any advice? Is is best to call and risk making them aware? Or ask for forgiveness later? I have read in other resources that calling local authorities to ask about tiny homes can often times raise red flags and put you on their "radar".
    Any advice or thoughts would be helpful. Thanks!
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    #2
    While you are building, you are probably simply a load on a trailer. Are you allowed to park a trailer with, say, a backhoe on it? Or a boat? Then why not a house under construction. Even once built, as long as your trailer is registered with the MVD, you are probably still just a load on a trailer. If you wish to live in it, well, you can deal with that when the time comes.

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      #3
      Hi HaleyS Montana is one of 5 states I haven't been to, but anecdotally I can tell you that dealing with the government is awful. You can have the trailer on your property, but evidence of any habitation is where you can get in trouble. Stealth and/or cool neighbors is the only way to live in one.

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        #4
        CasitaiiTiny and Doug
        ​​​​​​​Thanks for the reply! Not planning on living in the tiny home right away. I would ideally sell my current house and move the tiny home to a new location. Was just wondering if there would be issues building it in the view of my neighbors. I hadn't thought of it as a simply a trailer carrying something (ie a boat) before. Seems like a fair argument. Thanks for the help!

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          #5
          Haley, Was wondering after you sell your home are you planning on purchasing a piece of property with the proceeds? If so I would look for a area where there is not much zoning restrictions. It seems that a lot of state and local municipalities want to have their piece of the pie on everything we do. Believe me the further you are out from the City the less restrictions you have. However there are some Counties that can be just as strict too, but if you went the next county over it can be totally different. I would check with the local authority having the jurisdiction in the area that you are interested in first before I make the purchase of the land and if you are planning on going completely off grid that would making it even less stressful in dealing with these Government entity.

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            #6
            Jim Thanks for the advice! Eventually I would look at buying property out of town, but hoping to take it on the road for a little bit. I know the zoning can be tricky. I would love to be off grid entirely, but have to say it might be tricky out here in Montana in the winter time. Thanks again for the feedback, and I will definitely be diligent about looking into zoning before I purchase any property.

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              #7
              Here in Arizona (and probably a lot of places), we have two very distinct situations ... incorporated city land and unincorporated county property. The city lots are governing tightly by local zoning boards and building departments. More and more cities are trying to figure out how to handle tiny houses, but we are still a long way away from general acceptance. Unincorporated county land is a whole 'nother thing and this is where you might have some success. You could buy 10 acres of land outside of city boundaries in a million places here in Arizona for under $10k, set down a tiny house and no one would know or care. Coconino county is the size of New Jersey and has maybe two building inspectors. Can't imagine they have time or care about your tiny house over looking a spectacular canyon out there. Best guess ... Montana is the same as Arizona. Finding a big lot, outside city limits, but not too far from civilization for a modest price is still something that should be do-able.
              Last edited by ThinHaus; 09-17-2019, 08:50 AM.

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