Tiny homes, big business in NWA

KNWA

Planning Commission approves cluster housing proposal

NORTHWEST ARKANSAS, Ark. (KNWA) — The Rogers Planning Commission approved a cluster housing proposal allowing more diverse housing, including tiny homes.

Individual tiny homes could be built on a common piece of property, acting as in-between of an apartment and a single family home.

“This is more about a single-family version of a condominium business model,” says John McCurdy, Director of Community Development for the City of Rogers.

He explains, “this change to our code would allow for other business models that would support tiny homes to come into town.”

McCurdy says it’s developer-driven.

“In a busy intersection, you may have a couple of convenience stores surrounded by more compact single family, multi-family houses… transitioning into more of a traditional neighborhood,” McCurdy said.

The Rogers City Council will have to approve the cluster housing code for it to go into effect.

It’s not just Rogers that has developers looking at different housing options.

Tiny homes are nothing new in northwest Arkansas.

You can find them in south Fayetteville.

Fayetteville tiny home featured on Tiny House Nation

Asha Mevlana, a musician with Trans-Siberian Orchestra, lives in a 400 square foot tiny home.

It was built in five weeks for the TV show, Tiny House Nation.

Just steps away is a 160 square foot music studio on a trailer.

Asha Mevlana and Stefan Vickery

“I love the idea of living minimally with things that bring you joy and happiness.”

Asha Mevlana, lives in Fayetteville tiny home

“I wanted tall ceiling, lots of light, windows. If it was going to be a small space, I really wanted it to feel open,” Mevlana said.

As a traveling musician, Mevlana calls her living space the perfect size.

“I have events on my deck all the time…I had 150 people out here in my house and outside and it actually felt fine, which is crazy,” she said. “It was such a nice way to actually meet people because people are like, ‘what is this?’ It looks like am amplifier…I actually ended up meeting so many neighbors through building this house. That was kind of the goal moving here.”

The price point for a tiny home depends on the quality of materials used.

Just down the road on College Avenue and Ninth Street, tiny homes sold quickly for $155,000 each.

The developer, Zara Niederman, says there are all different homeowners, from young singles to older couples who want to downsize.

That’s $287 per square foot.

“These are manageable, energy efficient, and kind of fun to live in, really,” says Stefan Vickery, the builder of Mevlana’s home.

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