10 Great Tiny Homes for Retirees

For retirees looking to undergo extreme downsizing, a tiny home might be the answer.

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For retirees looking to undergo extreme downsizing, a tiny home might be the answer. The average tiny home measures 186 square feet. That's a fraction of the size of a traditional house. But limited space offers unique benefits, including lower utility bills and easier upkeep. Retirees are taking notice. Nearly 30% of tiny home residents are between the ages of 51 and 70, according to a 2015 survey conducted by TheTinyLife.com, a tiny home website.

Cost makes tiny homes particularly appealing to retirees living on fixed incomes. The average price to build a tiny home yourself is just $23,000, according to TheTinyLife.com. You'll pay more to have someone build it for you -- the 10 tiny homes for retirees we feature start at $45,000 -- but the price tag will still be far less than what you'd pay for a full-size home. In 2015, the median sale price of a new traditional house was $296,200, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. As for mortgages, 68% of tiny home owners don't have them, while just 29% of all U.S. homeowners are living mortgage-free.

If you're intrigued by the prospect of retiring to a tiny home, be sure to find one designed to suit the needs of retirement-age owners. Look for safety features such as slip-resistant floors, and avoid sleeping lofts with ladders. Also weigh the pros and cons of a mobile tiny home that can be moved around on a trailer versus one placed on a permanent foundation on land you own.

Take a look at 10 great tiny homes for retirees.


Pricing can vary and does not include the cost of land for homes set on a foundation or rental costs for homes set on a mobile trailer.

Andrea Browne Taylor
Contributing Editor

Browne Taylor joined Kiplinger in 2011 and was a channel editor for Kiplinger.com covering living and family finance topics. She previously worked at the Washington Post as a Web producer in the Style section and prior to that covered the Jobs, Cars and Real Estate sections. She earned a BA in journalism from Howard University in Washington, D.C. She is Director of Member Services, at the National Association of Home Builders.