This is a common sense matter of property rights. As a private land owner, you should be able to enjoy your land and live on it in whatever structure you like as long as it poses no harm to the public. Instead, a heinous conflict of interest occurs. Predatory municipal corporations get involved which have a vested interest in using zoning as a tool for profit, plunder, and discrimination. They target landowners who do not maximize their land taxes by choosing to live in a tiny home rather than a mandatory mansion. A city municipality has the authority to set the building codes, city ordinances, and permitting requirements by an implied contract when you accept their municipal services. What happens if a city refuses to provide municipal services in discrimination of your lifestyle choice because of the way you live?
"Tiny Homes" are becoming increasingly popular for many reasons.
1.) Cost less than a traditional house.
The demand for tiny homes is high since the post baby boomer generation, straddled with crippling student loan debt, is less willing to get a home mortgage.
2.) Less environmental impact.
Less building materials needed. Less energy usage.
The portability of a tiny home is attractive as it offers an alternative to either an apartment or mobile home in today's economy. A job may change every 1-3 yrs, and living in the same place for a 15 or 30 year home mortage is unrealistic.
Unfortunately, many wishing to live in a tiny home are not able to so without extensive litigation, as we have found, because of prohibitive City Ordinances. Many who do live in "Tiny Homes," often for economic reasons, do so in fear either putting their tiny home on wheels or hiding it as an accessory structure to a main building.
Examples of prohibitive City Ordinances:
1.) Minimum Square Footage. (My tiny home is 160 sq ft whereas zoning requires 1200 sq ft min!)
2.) Required % of masonry. (Zoning requires 60% masonry wheras my tiny home is all wood!)
3.) Required to be tied to the electrical grid. (My tiny home uses completely off the grid solar!)
4.) Required to use a licensed builder/inspectors. (Requires creative solutions)
5.) Regulations limiting septic systems et al. (Requires creative solutions)
Prohibitive city ordinances violate several rights:
1.) Basic land right of usage.
2.) Right of persuit of happiness.
3.) Right to provide for one's family by foraging for food.
I'm starting this petition because my husband & I have been continually harassed by the City of Sansom Park, TX (a sub-corporation of Fort Worth, TX) concerning our tiny home. We want to raise awareness of this critical issue affecting all people interested in living in a tiny home. Persuant to the record, the City has refused to provide municipal services. Furthermore, persuant to the record the City has falsely arrested my husband repeatedly over alleged municipal violations related to the tiny home. Additionally, I believe we are being targeted and being maliciously prosecuted by the City of Sansom Park. Is it for our audacity to live on our own land in our own tiny home free and clear of a mortgage? We are living in peace without any harm to ourselves or the public. Is it a crime to cost the City money by not living in a mansion to maximize property taxes?
Whatever the reason, incompetence, nepotism or conspiracy, we have decided to fight back and on or about 5/20/2014 the case of Aron Benjamin Goins vs. The City of Sansom Park et al. was submitted to the Federal Court. Don't worry citizen's of Sansom Park, the city officials being sued don't even live in this city! Why care about pesky little things like property rights, tiny domiciles or due process when you have no vested interest other than corporate piracy?
Please sign this petition to remove troublesome ordinances and corrupt government officials in Sansom Park but more importantly sign this petition in solidarity with tiny home rights in general. We fight not only for our own property rights, but for everyone's land rights. If you don't want to live in an America where you wake up and find your private land treated like a public park, then for goodness sakes please sign this petition. Although many people rent, I believe that owning your own home on your own piece of land is still the American dream. I believe this dream is still alive even if smaller than in prior generations. The denial of the American Dream by municipal corporations is inevitably a losing battle on their part as it cannot be stopped.
Read more about our case at www.tinyhomesolutions.org