Recently, I stumbled across an article from The U.S. Sun that talked about a village of tiny homes that has popped up in Detroit.
The village is comprised of 25 different homes that have all been made using repurposed materials. With funding from different organizations and individuals, people are able to live in these homes for a mere $250 to $400 a month.
Who Are These Homes For?
Low-income workers, senior citizens, those who have aged out of the foster care system, formerly homeless, and formerly incarcerated. And, yes, building low-income housing is a practice more and more cities are taking part in. But, these houses stand apart.
First, each one is different. Since they're made with repurposed materials, each one has a unique style. Second, they have porches and backyards. Luxuries that might be deemed "unnecessary" in similar situations. Third, residents receive free, mandatory financial literary lessons which teach lessons about debt management and beyond.
Finally, and this is a big one, after 7 years of renting, residents will be given the deed to the house mortgage free. Read more here.
Would This Work in the Kalamazoo Area?
Let's hope so!
Back in 2021, a plan was put into place to utilize PODS, an acronym for A Place of Dignity. Rather than tiny homes, these PODS are meant to be transitional housing as people look for permanent homes.
The project, which you can read about here, is meant to act as a kind of solution for homelessness. Obviously, with only 50 PODS, the entire population of homeless individuals in Kalamazoo won't be served at once. But, at least it's something.
Since 2021, there have been a few delays in acquiring a site on which to place the PODs. Find the latest update from February of 2023 here.
But, what about an actual tiny home village? Would that work in this area? To that I say, why not? If it works in Detroit certainly other cities can find a way to utilize unused land to build affordable homes for community members who need them.
From what I can find, there is currently no plan for a tiny home village in this area. But, fingers crossed for the future.