24 Oct 2016

Hey, Tiny House Enthusiasts!

You’ve probably noticed that the national political candidates are not the only ones urging you to vote! This past Friday was the last day to collect signatures for the IRC Tiny Home Appendix, and thankfully the goal for 5,000 signatures was met and surpassed! On Sunday, key players in the tiny house & construction world came together at an International Code Council (ICC) hearing to present the Appendix, and it was approved for consideration! Now, regional ICC leaders across the country will vote on its acceptance. More info below on how we can voice our support to these leaders.

 Macy Miller speaking at the ICC hearing this past weekend.

 Macy Miller speaking at the ICC hearing this past weekend.

Locally, your support is needed in order to win the LA2050 challenge grant!!!!

his grant will be used to support LATCH Collective – a workshop space to co-build tiny homes, and for Makes A Village to buy land to start a tiny house village. There are TWO MORE DAYS to vote in the LA2050 challenge. We need to be in the top 10 to be considered, and are currently just outside of the top 10 (out of 70 in our category). If you have not already done so, –>  VOTE RIGHT NOW <– !!!. Also, make sure to COMMENT beneath our project on the LA2050 page, as well as hit “recommend.” You can share the word on Facebook & Twitter! Tell your friends and family, and re-post these social media links to your own account or to tiny home groups!

Also….Let me take a moment re-introduce myself. My name is Teresa Baker – most call me Tessa, and I am now your new ATHA California State Chapter Leader for Los Angeles! The American Tiny House Association (ATHA) is a resource for tiny house enthusiasts, especially focused on advocating for increased options for living tiny. Dan Fitzpatrick, out of Fresno, and I will be representing California during monthly calls between all State Chapter leaders, learning about what’s happening across the country so we can bring this information to you. If you aren’t already a member of ATHA – consider joining. It is $10 a year, with proceeds going to national tiny house advocacy efforts. IF you are a member, there is an annual members meeting this Thursday, October 27th. Email bonnielee.cuevas@americantinyhouseassociation.org for information on how to get connected to the call.

This weekend some of us enjoyed an amazing Panel Discussion on Intentional Communities, as well as a productive Tiny Advocacy Network meeting. Welcome to our new friends from the discussion! Here are some notes from our TAN meeting…

  • We will be creating a SLACK page to encourage communication among LA Tiny House enthusiasts and advocates, with Sean Marquez as our I.T. guy! Keep your eyes on your email for its release.
  • In order to voice our support for the Tiny House Appendix to the IRC, we need to email the ICC regional leaders. ATHA has created an email template you can use for simplicity. Here are emails to  regional leaders you can contact:
  • We will use funds raised from the Design Share to organize a networking event. Further input and planning needed!
  • You, as network members, are encouraged to suggest and/or lead events for Tiny House enthusiasts in LA! Please be empowered to let your leadership shine – we will all support you in succeeding! Post to our Facebook Page or email LAtinyhousescommunity@gmail.com if you have an event idea.

A few more things…

That’s all for now! Cheers and here’s to enjoying the little things in life!

Tessa Baker
Tiny Advocacy Network
LATCH Collective Co-founder
ATHA State Chapter Leader

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13 Oct 2016

Hello, Tiny House Enthusiasts! 

Fall has been a full month! Thank you to everyone who came out to the Design Share on October 6th! It was fun to share our dream homes and see some creative designs. There were many new faces as well – welcome to our network! Funds raised from the event will support this network’s advocacy efforts! Come out to the next Tiny Advocacy Network meeting on October 22nd at 4pm, Arts District Brewery, to be part of the discussion on what we can do with these funds.  

This Saturday, Sacramento is hosting a Tiny House Design Share contest. If you’re considering a road trip or flight up, introduce yourselves to others around LA going on this meetup event. Be sure to take pictures and notes to share with us, and say hello to Dan Fitzpatrick (American Tiny House Association California Chapter Leader) and Alexis & Christian from Tiny House Expedition!  

If you’ve ever considered living in a Tiny House Community, dreamed up what your ideal intentional community would be like, or have already started organizing for this type of development, you should most definitely join us for a Panel Discussion on Intentional Communities on October 22nd, 2pm – 4pm. Share your ideas and connect with those of others, and form a better idea of what it would take to start this type of community. Get your $5 tickets for admission here.  

If you’re a part of the Facebook world, and you love tiny homes, chances are you’re one of the 30,000+ people in the “Tiny House People” group, and know of Macy Miller. Macy, who’s been living with her family in her tiny home in Boise, Idaho for many years. A few days ago, Macy received a notice of code violation from her city (who investigated due to a complaint from a neighbor) and has been given 20 days to remove her tiny home. This is an important reality check for how important Tiny House Advocacy work is, as living under the radar (i.e. living illegally because of limited legal options for tiny living) is not the best option for many who don’t want to deal with a stressful eviction situation like Macy’s. To understand how to live within Los Angeles’ legal boundaries, you can check out LATCH Collective’s resource for legally living tiny in LA, which is also on our Advocacy page. 

Here are 3 things you can do this week to advocate for better tiny living options in Los Angeles!  

  1. Sign the petition to support changes to the International Residency Code to include an appendix for tiny houses that will create tiny friendly codes for ceiling heights, sleeping lofts, egress and more, making a legitimate code at this higher level which municipalities could easily adopt. You can listen to Andrew Morrison explain more about this change on Tiny House Expedition radio.  Sign the petition now!  
  2. Start the Conversation with your municipality! Send an inquisitive email to your municipal leader and urban planner and share with them your goals for living tiny. Ricky Brown did just this, and has the interest of Santa Clarita staff who will meet with her in the next week. I’ll be attending the meeting for support, and can support you as well! On our TAN spreadsheet, there’s a new tab with a guide on how to approach city staff. Be sure to check out this step-by-step, and make notes on communication outcomes within the spreadsheet under your municipality’s tab.  
  3. VOTE for the Patrick McCaffrey Foundation in the LA2050 contest if you want to see tiny house villages AND a workshop space for co-building tiny homes right here in LA County! Makes a Village and LATCH Collective have collaborated on a proposal for using $100,000 for tiny living in LA County! Having concrete spaces for building and for living in tiny homes will have a huge impact on public awareness and leadership support. LATCH Collective will act as a hub for Tiny House Advocacy. Plus, these spaces will help you to achieve your own tiny dreams! Winners are chosen by the public – that means YOU and anyone in the USA! View the submission and vote here starting October 18th.  

With the big November 8th election coming up, we encourage you to find a reason to vote beyond the never-ending scandals bubbling out of our presidential candidates. Remember that your ballot will be full of local measures that will directly affect your life in LA! Get informed on what’s what on this ballot. Many in our network endorse Measure M – a game-changing transit initiative affecting LA County that will improve free-way efficiency, add many new rail lines, and grant funds to municipalities to improve their local transit initiatives like bike lanes, bus lines, and of course those nasty potholes, all in exchange for a tiny increase in local sales tax. Share this information with your friends and family so they can also be informed.  

A few more things… 

  • Want to make sure you’re not missing out on news from previous newsletters? You can now view them here.  
  • Remember to review your personal information on our Tiny Advocacy Network spreadsheet to confirm it is complete/correct!  
  • If you have any updates on tiny house advocacy related information and don’t feel like navigating the spreadsheet, email LAtinyhousescommunity@gmail.com!  

That’s all for now! Thanks for reading and enjoy the many moments to come.  

Tessa Baker
Tiny Advocacy Network  
LATCH Collective Co-founder
American Tiny House Association State Chapter Leader 

5 Oct 2016

Hello, beautiful tiny house enthusiasts!

This will be the first newsletter for many, as we have a bunch of new additions to our Tiny Advocacy Network! 

Welcome newbies, feel free to introduce yourselves on our Facebook group , or better yet, come to one of our events and gain inspiration and knowledge from others in person! Speaking of events, have you got your tickets for tomorrow’s Design Share yet??

 

Thursday, October 6th  7pm @ Impact Hub LA

Thursday, October 6th  7pm @ Impact Hub LA

 

This will an awesome night of snacks, sharing, inspiration, and community building! All ticket proceeds go into a new Tiny Advocacy Network fund set up by LATCH Collective, so this group is able to better advocate for more opportunities for tiny living in LA.  It’s also a great chance to promote a positive image of tiny homes to the wider public, but we need the public to know about our event in order for this to happen, so please share this event on your Facebook, Twitter, and email lists!!

There’s still time to sign up to share your design! This could be a verbal explanation, scanned sketch, 3D rendering, or just a print out. Let me know by noon on Thursday if you have a design to share. 

If you weren’t aware, LATCH Community memberships are now open for the taking! A monthly membership (only $10) allows you free access to LATCH related events, including the Design Share. You will also have access to the digital Tiny House Central Library, an online resource LATCH is curating as a community resource, which grows as you research! Community members can also feel great knowing they are helping to fund the first Tiny House Makers Space right here in their County

If membership costs are an issue, contact shainatessalivetiny@gmail.com for opportunities to pay through volunteering instead of by dollar!

 

 

Southern California has been BUZZING with tiny house activity this past week…

  • Impact HUB LA has agreed to partner with us so we can have a space for meetings and events, and they are an amazing resource, connected to people working with the idea of tiny homes in this City! Thank you Impact Hub! More on the work they’ve been up to soon!
  • Ventura hosted a workshop for municipal staff on the topic of tiny homes this past Friday, and had the folks at Tiny Lab, Tiny House Expedition, as well as Dan Fitzpatrick to promote the benefits of tiny houses within municipalities. The crowd was engaged and asking great questions. We can safely bet that this will catalyze change in the Ventura area, and that this change has potential to get things rolling in the LA area!
  • An awesome conversation took place between Eli Lipman and city planning staff the City of LA, on minimum size requirements for primary dwelling units in the city. Basically, there are none! As long as the code requirements for room size are followed, there are no minimums on square footage for dwelling units. There is a minimum at the County level of 800 square feet which affects unincorporated areas and likely is adopted by many municipalities. We encourage you to #starttheconversation with your city planner(s) to find out the minimums in your municipality!
  • Tiny Enthusiast Ricky Brown started the conversation with planners and municipal staff in Santa Clarita, great work, Ricky! Their City Manager has contacted us and let us know that they are organizing a staff meeting to talk about tiny homes, and want to meet with us to talk more, and considering the possibility of tiny home communities in Santa Clarita if they can understand better the requirements for making it work! If this doesn’t encourage you to#starttheconversation, you’ve gotta let me know why not!
  • Tumbleweed Tiny Homes put on a workshop in Culver City this past weekend which was very well attended, and I was able to make an appearance and get new tiny enthusiasts connected to our network who didn’t know about our social media groups previously. Hello to everyone who attended this workshop and is now on our mailing list! Make sure to invite tiny house enthusiasts you meet to join our social media pages, and encourage them to sign up for this newsletter. 
  • Governor Jerry Brown signed on September 27th to reduce barriers when developing an accessory dwelling unit in California, which will take place in January. This Senate Bill 1069 eases regulatory burdens by eliminating all setbacks for existing units as long as the building is deemed safe, eliminated, covered parking requirements for the primary structure as long as some parking is provided for secondary unit, and limits fees for connecting the second unit to water and sewer lines!
  • We had Alexis & Christian from Tiny House Expedition here all week, and they even did some filming. Hopefully we can keep promoting options for legally living tiny and can be a success story for part 2or 3 of their documentary! #tinyhousegoals If you haven’t already done so, donate to their cause – their passion project is really helping us create opportunities for legally living tiny!!

And, a call to action to our network! Last week, Impact Hub LA hosted a co-creation talk on homelessness, challenging organizations across the City do something for National Hunger & Homeless Awareness Week, November 12-20th. I will bring this challenge to our network –  What can WE do to bring light to issues of housing affordability and homelessness in LA? Think up some ideas, and share them by email or at our next Tiny Advocacy Network meeting,  October 22nd at 4 pm. This date (Oct 22nd) will also be the date of a Panel Discussion on Intentional Communities. We will have the dreamers and do-ers who are working to start tiny home communities share their ideas, struggles, and successes, and encourage anyone who has considered or dreamed of living in an intentional tiny house community to attend, share their ideas, and ask questions!

 

 

ONE MORE THING – did you know that a children’s book on tiny houses is ALMOST about to be published? You can pre-order a copy of The Big Adventures of Tiny House so that they meet their $$ requirement for publishing! It’s an AWESOME, interactive book.

Remember to share your research and findings on our Tiny Advocacy Network Spreadsheet. For our newcomers, please add your name and details to this spreadsheet, and remember this is a live document. Check out the tabs and the bottom and find your municipality.

 Thank you for reading and hope to see you soon!

Tessa Baker
Tiny Advocacy Network  
LATCH Collective Co-founder
American Tiny House Association State Chapter Leader

19 Sep 2016

Hello Tiny House Enthusiasts!

We’ve had a great few weeks at the LA County Fair hanging at the Makes A Village booth, reaching new people interested in Tiny living in LA, informing them of the perks but also barriers to living Tiny legally, and have received a HUGE number of people signed up to get involved in our advocacy efforts. Way to go to the volunteers who’ve helped in these efforts!

Image from Rosalyn Hisle & Laviona Lampkin, volunteers at the fair. 

Image from Rosalyn Hisle & Laviona Lampkin, volunteers at the fair. 

There are a LOT of great things going on this week, including Tiny Home tours, documentary screenings, workshops on legally living tiny, opportunities for political change and influence, and applying for FUNDING money for affordable housing advocacy efforts. 

This Saturday, September 24th, the workshop series, Legally Living Tiny in LA, will continue from 1 pm – 3 pm in Culver City (exact venue to be announced soon). SPECIAL GUESTS: Alexis & Christian from Tiny House Expedition! They are in the process of producing the Living Tiny Legally documentary series, but will be attending the event and be available for Q&A! Our next Tiny Advocacy Network meeting will follow the workshop event, 3 pm – 4 pm on Saturday, September 24th. Please do all you can to come out!

Follow their journey on Instagram: @tiny_house_expedition

Follow their journey on Instagram: @tiny_house_expedition

If you cannot make it to Saturday’s workshop, there is another chance to meet Alexis and Christian (and you really should meet them, they are awesome!). On Sunday, September 25th, we will be hosted by Netty Chow to watch the screening of Living Tiny Legally in her home theater in Buena Park (near Knott’s Berry Farm). And guess what? They are bringing their home for a Tiny House tour! You won’t want to miss this unique opportunity to learn and connect with support networks to make change happen.

(Note – both events on the 24th and 25th may be filmed by Alexis & Christian for their upcoming documentaries). 

We have a major opportunity to secure funding for Tiny House advocacy efforts, for opening up a Tiny House co-building workspace, and for purchasing land for developing Tiny House communities through the LA2050 grant! LATCH Collective & Makes a Village need your help creating a promotional video that can be used for a grant application. Please take 10 minutes of your time to pull up your iPhones video recorder, put that iPhone down on a stable location and using the front camera, record yourself saying why you think tiny homes are needed in LA, why you want to live tiny, and/or why you want to build your own tiny home. Recordings should be no more than 30 seconds. Send the video to shainatessalivetiny@gmail.com by Friday September 24th .

ast we heard, LA City Council was discussing the new second unit ordinance during their meeting on the 13th. Well, Council was still undecided on the 13th and are once more going to propose changes to the new second unit ordinance tomorrow, September 20th. Once again, we have the chance to get involved in the conversation with our elected officials and show our SUPPORT for affordable housing options like second dwelling units. We want to ask them to keep coming up with solutions like this, and to consider Tiny Homes on Wheels as secondary dwelling units.  We need to find out which council members are open to/interested in the idea of Tiny Homes.There will be a policy maker workshop for elected officials and municipal staff on September 30th in Ventura – “Rebuilding the American Dream: The Changing Focus of Housing Needs” where they will present Tiny House communities as a way to increase affordable housing needs. We would really benefit from having LA representatives there! Email the name of any interested councilor, planner or other municipal staff member to Vina Lustado – vina@solhausdesign.com who will send them an invitation.

The City Council meeting is tomorrow at 10 am if you can attend. If you cannot attend, please reach out to an elected official by email. Here is a list of council people and their emails.  
To figure out which elected district of the city you’re located in, click here.

Even if you don’t live in the City of LA, start the second dwelling unit/tiny home conversation with your elected official. We can spread the word to them about the Policy Makers workshop!

Thank you for reading! Hope to see you soon!

27 Sep 2016

Hello Tiny House Enthusiasts!

It was great to see many of you out at our Legally Living Tiny in LA workshop as well as our Documentary Screening & Tiny House Tour event! It was such a treat to have Alexis & Christian from Tiny House Expedition to share their knowledge with us.

If you haven’t seen their documentary yet, please do give it a watch! It’s a great source of knowledge and inspiration for how WE can actually make change doing what we are doing – advocating for more options for living tiny! If you would like to see the film and talk more with Alexis & Christian, head up to Ojai on October 1st for another screening and a panel discussion.

Also, remember that there is an important workshop on Friday, September 30th in Ventura County for municipal staff of SoCal (mainly elected officials and planners) interested in learning more about tiny homes in relation to municipal needs. Send the contact information of any municipal staff who you’ve started a conversation about tiny living with, or who you know might be interested in learning more about tiny houses, to Tracy.McAulay@ventura.org so that they can receive an invitation to the workshop

A huge part of making change is public support – we are striving to promote positive public perception of tiny living. We have an opportunity to just this on October 6th… Spread the word and invite your friends ….  to the Tiny House Design Share!

We will be partnering with Impact Hub LA to put on this event! Tickets can be purchased -> here <-  and admission is free for LATCH Collective members, so consider becoming a member with LATCH (you’d be paying the same price, so why not get the extra membership bonuses and support LATCH in opening its doors?) Please invite your friends, co-workers, neighbors, and family. Consider putting up a poster. You don’t have to want to live in a tiny home to appreciate the fun creativity that goes into a design! Also, please email me ASAP if you would like to present your design ideas! 

In the email version of this newsletter, there was a letter for asking for prize donations from businesses – help in seeking out prizes would be greatly appreciated! The funds from this event will go to helping US – the Tiny Advocacy Network! Profits will be put into LATCH Collective’s pool for affordable housing advocacy efforts.

Impact Hub LA is hosting an event this Wednesday, September 28th at 6:30 pm focusing on affordable housing initiatives in LA: Co-Creating the Future of Our Cities: Homeless to Homebound. Tiny Homes will be represented in the conversation, and if anyone would like to come, please join!

Hopefully you’re all inspired by the Living Tiny Legally documentary to make some real change in our communities. Remember to keep everyone in the loop about the conversations happening around the county by filling in notes under your municipality’s tab in this Tiny Advocacy Network spreadsheet. If anyone does not feel comfortable entering in information to the spreadsheet, reply to this email with any information/updates/ideas  you have and they will be added to the spreadsheet for you.  

That’s it for now!

-Tessa 

PS: There were two attachments on the email version of the newsletter. 
1) Poster for design share you can print and/or post online to spread the word
2) Letter for donations