Building a Tiny House In New York

Building a Tiny House In New York

A tiny house on wheels (aka “houses on wheels”) are structures you can tow behind a motor vehicle and use as temporary housing (usually for over 30 days). A typical tiny house would measure less than 600 square feet and weigh less than 15,000 pounds.

A tiny house must be a single dwelling unit and cannot have secondary living spaces such as rooms, storage, etc. You must also follow all applicable local, state, and federal codes.

Building a Tiny House in New York? Here’s What You Need to Know

The Tiny House Movement is here to stay!

In the past decade, tiny houses have exploded in popularity. Some estimates say that there are over 100,000 of them across the country (that’s a lot of small places!).

People are even moving into tiny houses in New York State! So it’s only natural that you might wonder if you can build a small house in New York.

And the answer is… maybe!

In fact, some people are building them successfully. Here’s what you need to know about building a tiny house in New York:

You Must Have a Permit to Build a Tiny House in New York

To build a tiny house in New York, you must have the proper permits and inspections. First, you will need a building permit from your local city or town.

You must also have a New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) permit for all on-site waste management and solid waste disposal practices. You can apply for these permits on the DEC website.

Building inspectors may also inspect your tiny house during construction if they see any design or construction process problems.

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If they find anything wrong, they can issue an order requiring that you change your plans before continuing with construction or demolition work. They can also give an order prohibiting further work on your project until all issues are resolved.

If there are code violations, the inspectors can issue orders requiring that certain items be fixed before you can open the building. However, this can be expensive and time-consuming.

And if your tiny house doesn’t meet all the requirements, you may have to tear it down and start over. So make sure that you get everything right before you build!

What Kind of Tiny House Can You Build in New York?

As we mentioned above, tiny houses are most commonly made from various materials such as wood, steel, aluminum, or a combination.

Some people choose to build tiny houses from various materials to add character and individuality to their homes (or to recycle old materials). Others use an existing house on wheels as the base for their tiny house (so they don’t have to worry about finding a place for it when they move).

Whatever the case may be, you must follow all applicable local codes and regulations to build a tiny house in New York.


Building a tiny house in New York is a great way to start your homesteading adventure. You can enjoy the unique experience of living in a small space with all the benefits of modern technology.

However, you must know all the regulations and codes before beginning. And if you’re thinking about building a tiny house in New York, check out the various online resources.

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