Are Tiny Houses Legal in Washington?

Tiny houses are a popular housing trend, but are they legal in Washington? The answer is not as simple as you might think. There are no statewide regulations governing tiny houses in Washington.

That means each city and county has its own rules about what types of dwellings are allowed and where they can be located. In some areas, tiny houses are treated like RVs and must be parked in an RV park or other designated area. Other jurisdictions allow them to be built on standard residential lots as long as they meet certain size and setback requirements.

There’s no denying that the tiny house movement is gaining in popularity across the country. And for good reason! These pint-sized homes offer a more sustainable and affordable way of living that appeals to many people.

But what about here in Washington state? Are tiny houses legal? The short answer is: it depends.

There are no specific laws or code regulations regarding tiny houses in Washington state, so it really varies from city to city and county to county. In some areas, you may be able to park your tiny house on your property just like an RV or trailer. However, other jurisdictions view them as dwellings and require them to meet all the same building codes as a regular home, which can be quite costly and difficult to do.

So if you’re thinking of going tiny in Washington state, your best bet is to do your research beforehand and find out what the rules are in your particular area. You might also want to consider joining a localtiny house community or group, as they can provide valuable resources and support throughout the process.

Here are a Few Frequently Asked Questions About Tiny Houses in Washington: 1

What is a Tiny House? A Tiny House is a house that is typically under 500 square feet. The houses are often built on trailers so they can be moved and are usually more sustainable and efficient than traditional homes.

2. How do I get started with building a Tiny House in Washington? There are many ways to get started with building a Tiny House in Washington. You could buy a pre-made tiny house, hire someone to build one for you, or build one yourself.

If you choose to build your own, there are many online resources and books available to help you through the process.

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3. What type of permits do I need in order to build my Tiny House in Washington? The type of permits you will need will depend on the county and city where you plan to build your tiny house as well as the size of your house.

It is recommended that you contact your local planning department to find out what permits are required before beginning construction.

What is the Definition of a Tiny House in Washington

The definition of a tiny house in Washington is a dwelling that is 400 square feet or less in total floor area. This includes both the living area and any additional space, such as lofts, porches, and decks. Tiny houses must be built on permanent foundations and must meet all the requirements of the International Residential Code (IRC).

Are Tiny Houses Legal in Washington

Yes, tiny houses are legal in Washington. There is no state law that specifically prohibits or regulates tiny houses. However, local zoning ordinances may dictate wheretiny houses can be located and how they must be built.

For example, some jurisdictions require thattiny houses be placed on a foundation, while others allow them to be built on wheels. Additionally, some areas have minimum size requirements for homes, so it’s important to check with your local zoning office before beginning any construction.

How Do Zoning And Building Code Requirements Apply to Tiny Houses in Washington

There are a few things to consider when discussing zoning and building code requirements for tiny houses in Washington. First, it’s important to note that there is no statewide definition for “tiny houses” in Washington. This can make it difficult to know how local zoning and building codes will apply to these types of structures.

However, there are some general guidelines that can be followed when determining if your tiny house project is compliant with local regulations. In general, most local jurisdictions in Washington require that structures meet minimum size requirements set forth in the International Residential Code (IRC). The IRC generally requires dwelling units to have a minimum ground floor area of 120 square feet, however this requirement may be increased based on the number of occupants or other factors.

Additionally, most localities also have height restrictions for structures which typically range from 12-16 feet depending on the jurisdiction.

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When it comes to siting your tiny house on a property, most jurisdictions have setback requirements which dictate how close a structure can be built to property lines. These setback requirements vary based on the type of zone the property is located in but typically range from 5-25 feet depending on the jurisdiction.

In some cases, variances or waivers may be available if you can demonstrate that meeting the setback requirement would create an undue hardship on your ability to develop the property. Ultimately, it’s important to consult with your local planning and building department prior to beginning any construction projects related to tiny houses in Washington state. They will be able to provide you with specific information regarding applicable zoning and building code requirements for your particular project.

What are the Minimum Size Requirements for a Tiny House in Washington

There is no minimum size requirement for a tiny house in Washington. However, there are minimum requirements for houses in general. The International Residential Code (IRC), which has been adopted by the state of Washington, requires that a dwelling have at least one room that is 120 square feet or more and 7 feet or more in any horizontal dimension.

Additionally, every dwelling must have at least two means of egress, such as doors or windows.

Can I Live in a Tiny House Full-Time in Washington

Yes, you can live in a tiny house full-time in Washington! There are no statewide regulations governing how small a dwelling can be, so long as it meets minimum size requirements for health and safety. Local zoning ordinances may have additional restrictions, but in general, living in a tiny house on wheels (THOW) is allowed throughout the state.

One popular option for THOW living in Washington is to camp on BLM land. The Bureau of Land Management manages over 13 million acres of public lands across the state, providing ample opportunities for dispersed camping. With a little research, you should be able to find a spot that suits your needs.

Keep in mind that you’ll need to follow all Leave No Trace principles to minimize your impact on the land. If you’re interested in staying put for a while, there are also several RV parks and campgrounds around Washington that welcome Tiny House dwellers. These tend to be more expensive than dry camping on BLM land, but they offer amenities like water and electrical hookups that can make life a bit easier.

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living in certified RV tiny home legally Washington, King County, Pierce County


If you’re considering downsizing to a tiny house in Washington, you may be wondering if they’re legal. The good news is that yes, tiny houses are legal in Washington! However, there are a few things to keep in mind when it comes to building and living in a tiny house in the state.

First, all homes in Washington must meet certain size requirements set by the International Residential Code (IRC). A typical minimum size for a dwelling unit is 120 square feet of livable space per person. This means that your tiny house must have at least 120 square feet of space for every person who will be living there.

Second, you’ll need to make sure your tiny house is built on a foundation that meets the IRC’s requirements. This typically means either pouring a concrete slab or anchoring your home to an existing foundation with bolts or straps. Finally, you’ll need to get a permit from your local building department before you can build your tiny house.

Once you have all of these things taken care of, you’ll be able to enjoy all the benefits of living in a cozy little home without having to worry about whether or not it’s legal!

This is Anthony Thompson, chief editor and the founder of this site, Tinyhousegarage. I'm a home architect. Basically, I've created this site to help people build tiny houses with a limited budget and land space or people who are homeless. As a home architect, I became very disheartened when I saw homeless people around me, which influenced me to create this site to help people build beautiful tiny houses.

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