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The $99 house arrives in the United States

The cheapest home from Jay Shafer's Tumbleweed Tiny House Company is a flat pack to be built by the owner but, if you're not very handy, there are ready made versions from $38,997.

The teeny homes, which start at just 65 square feet are kitted out with fully functioning kitchens,  bathrooms complete with composting toilets and sleeping areas.

Some models even come on wheels and as well as being environmentally friendly the homes are affordable for people on meagre incomes.
As the economy in the US fails to improve Shafer, who lives in one of his houses in Sebastapol, California, says that less can be more. ‘People are starting to understand that excess is not necessarily a luxury. It can be a burden, a liability. People are living in 4,000 and 6,000 square foot debtors’ prisons,’ he said.

‘People spend 30 years or more paying for all this space and stuff that they don't really need.
I grew up in a 4,000 square foot home and my sister and I were in charge of cleaning the house,’ he explained.

But his main reason for building such a little home was nothing so grandiose as saving the world, or so pragmatic as saving money. ‘I simply do not have the time or patience for a large home. I’ve found that, like anything else that’s superfluous, extra space merely gets in the way of my contentment, for it requires maintenance and heating and ultimately demands that I exchange a portion of my life for the money to pay for these luxuries,’ he said.

‘I wanted a place that would maintain my serene lifestyle, not a place that I would spend the rest of my life maintaining. I find nothing demanding about Tumbleweed. Everything’s within arm’s reach and nothing’s in the way,’ he added.

People are buying the houses to stay, as offices and also as added room for guests staying.
In the United States many local authorities do not require planning permission for a building of less than 120 square feet. The company has four models at 99 square feet, two at 107 square feet and three at 117 square feet. There is also a version that can be fitted on the back of a truck.

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