Tiny Homes On Wheels: Fear Of A New Type Of Gypsy?

What made me come up with the title of this blog? The answer is that a good number of people fear property values will go down with the presence of tiny homes on wheels within a community. The presence of wheels beneath a tiny house though originally put there to bypass some building codes can be seen as an easy way to allow a tiny house owner to run away and escape responsibilities at any time, such as the payment of bills. The owner become a thief capable of stealing in the middle of the night.

horses and caravan
Horses and caravans

Gypsies have long been associated with caravans, an earlier type of house on wheels. Indeed Jay Shafer, who build the first tiny house in America as we know them today has said he was not doing anything new. Tiny houses have been with humans for a very long time, if not necessarily on wheels. The problem is that the nomadic way of living in first world countries has for the most part stopped and if it has not been stopped by a minority of people it is viewed as suspect by the majority.

It may appear on the surface that a lifestyle that belongs in the past is clashing with a modern present way of living. You only need to hear the term “trailer park trash” to know how some people feel about people choosing to live in trailer homes, homes that are also on wheels. It is a fear based on that of unpredictability and criminality. Gypsies have often been associated with these fears. The Gypsies also keep to themselves and are clouded by mystery.

fancy gypsy
Gypsy Woman

When you dig deeper you will find that tiny home on wheels living is in actual fact a more modern way to live responsibly with the environment. Tiny home on wheel owners are attempting to draw people into a possible futuristic way of living that is sustainable. They are actually open to working with different members of society to reassure them they are not up to any type of criminality.

Still some common ground with the Gypsies do exist.

The Traditional Definition of A Gypsy.

gypsy guy
Gypsy man

According to the documentaries I have watched that are available on Youtube, the dark-skinned Gypsy origins have been traced back to North-West India. Possibly they were the descendants of the warrior caste or of dancers and singers that were expelled out of India. At one time highly regarded for their skills with dance, music, fortune telling, metals, and even sought as slaves for this knowledge they were eventually rejected for not learning new working skills for changing times and becoming sedentary people.

They got their name when they were once confused with Egyptians and did not bother to make the correction. Gypsy became a short term word for Egyptian. Today the term Gypsy can also include fair skin nomadic tribes that also that come from such countries as Scandinavia.

Gypsies do prefer the nomadic life yet when they are not moving they do like to create communities out of their mobile homes. They can create a yard out of their homes by placing them in a square or circular shape. They may even have a garden for a couple of months if that is the duration of their stay in one place.

They reuse old objects, metal in particular. They may go too far with this idea out of ignorance. A documentary I found on youtube about Gypsies in Bulgaria had them taking apart new computers given to them for their benefit out of ignorance for their electronic parts. They also burned up tires, an environmental hazard for the metal inside.

Along with that, they will reuse old toys and clothes found in dumpsters which is not bad as long as they are cleaned out properly. They will recycle bottles and cans which is good for the environment.

On the negative side, depending on the country they are in traditional Gypsies are associated with low scholarity, adolescent marriages, thievery, exploitation of children into criminality and lazy people who don’t want to work for long periods of time. Of course you cannot generalize all of them. Some of them do not fit this stereotype but they often keep quiet about their family origins to protect themselves.

The Legitimate Tiny Home On Wheels Owner lifestyle.

Gypsy Woman

We already know that one of the reasons people choose to live in tiny houses is to reduce the debt load of having to buy a regular size house or to be able to save for one. Mobility is not always the first priority. The wheels are there to get pass building codes that will not allow you to live in a small house permanently unless it is not a permanent fixture. If the need arises you can move away with it.

Many tiny home on wheels owners do like the idea of a tiny house community consisting of about twelve houses and creating a yard with them where they can gather and have their children play. They will most of the time work with municipal leaders to make this happen.

In my blog on tiny homes on wheels in Florida I mentioned that in order to prevent tiny house owners from moving away in the middle of the night, front and back porches attached to the homes where made a condition for a tiny house community to exist.

Tiny homeowners also negotiated what could be put in their houses. In some places, they could not put in a big stove or oven but upon asking were allowed to use a hot plate and a small conventional countertop oven. They found this information out by cooperating with municipal leaders. Sticking to themselves and remaining a mystery was not an option.

Many tiny homeowners like the idea of a garden. This is why tiny homes on wheels and permaculture go together. The land that is worked on is rented or bought.

Tiny home on wheel owners do like to recycle with up to date information. Burning old tires for metal is not likely to happen. Many times they will use materials found at deconstruction sights or a dumpster. As they tend to live as minimalists, they want clothes and toys that are still good to be used as long as possible.

Tiny home on wheels owners tend to come from a lower middle-class and up background. Wither they construct their tiny house themselves or have professional builders build it for them they need a high enough amount of money to fund it. Remember that present banks will not help fiance the construction of a tiny home on wheels.

These owners at a minimum will at least have a high school degree. They will have the capacity for employment. If they move around much it is because their carreer demands it. Stealing or making children steal is likely not a high risk.

The Tiny Home On Wheels Owner On Illegitimate Ground.

I feel the need to mention the tiny house owner who has installed his or her home on illegitimate places. As I know so far this tends to happen in the country but does in fact happen in the city. Why? Sometimes it is hard to find a legal place to install a tiny house. Sometimes people are waiting for laws to change which are doing so slowly.

How do you regard a tiny house owner under this circumstance? Does this technically automatically make them dangerous people? Not really but I will admit as a fellow tiny house lover I would still be careful about them myself though I would not jump right away to sick the cops on them.

Tiny Home On Wheels Owner: A Modern Gypsy?

gypsy rebel

Is a tiny home on wheels owner a new type of Gypsy coming into being? As much as tiny owners can be cooperative with others and obey laws if they get tired of living in one place they can “say the heck with it” and leave. Sure they will inform the proper authorities to do so legitimately but they can still do it. Their home like a caravan is on wheels.

Permaculture which goes well with tiny houses will reintroduce people to living on the land, although with more research than previously known. That is an older way to live. Gypsies live with older values. Yet with modern ones, it will still be a mixture of old and new.

Sometimes tiny houses are built to enable students to attend post-high school institutions. It allows them to save on dorm fees.

As minimalist they recycle as much as possible not because they are necessarily poor as the older version of the Gypsy would indicate, but because it is a better environmental choice.

If all the above are the case we could now be facing a Gypsy who is out of the shadow, obeying laws, connecting with outsiders, educated and an environmentalist.

Pictures taken from Pixaboy.

If you have any questions or comments please leave them below and I will get back to you as soon as I can.

Marina one

Marina Tidbury



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10 thoughts on “Tiny Homes On Wheels: Fear Of A New Type Of Gypsy?”

  1. I absolutely love this insightful article because it is full of great information. This is fascinating and intriguing to me. You did an excellent job of providing education and resources; The article was well written and easy to understand

    I am just getting to know about this new type of gypsy&nbsp, and I must tell you its an eye-opener for me.

  2. HI, could you provide a link to your tiny home Florida article? I think I would like to experience the freedom of possibly being able to move from my current suburban life and look more seriously into the tiny home movement in my local area. This way we could one day enjoy the dream of living without so many burdened responsibilities. 

  3. These tiny houses are funny and I am surprised They are not found in every part of the world. I think this tiny house is found in some parts of the world but I don’t yet understand properly what it is all about. I didn’t actually comprehend well as I read through. Is it for cattle rearers? Or is it for people who don’t have money. 

    1. Tiny homes on wheels or tiny houses on wheels could be for cattle rearers but not for them alone.  Tiny houses are mostly for people who do not want to spend a large sum of money on a house but are not necessarily poor.  They have wheels to bypass certain building codes found with non-mobile housing.  

  4. Hi Marina,

    Your post is a nice answer to the  current housing problems. Owing to various reasons like afforfability, scarcity of housing and unstable jobs the tiny house living is on the rise. 

    Also on the other hand there are people who just don’t want to be a part of the mortgage cycle and prefer to rather spend the same money on better things at life like travelling and tiny housing can be a perfect solution to this. Also I feel that with increase in the number of people going for tiny housing new laws will be introduced which will surely and steadily help growth of tiny housing.

  5. Hi Marina! 🙂

    Thank you very much for this very interesting read. There where many things I didn’t know about Gypsies. I didn’t know they were initially confounded with Egyptians and that was the origin of their name. In Southamerica Gypsy’s are not commonly seen on the streets. In fact, I have never seen a Gypsy in all my life. But I have heard stories related to them such as The Hunchback of Notre-Dame. And I’ve heard a bit of their nomadic lifestyle and the social problems involved.

    The tiny homes on wheels enable people that are highly responsible for obeying laws to benefit from the mobility involved in this type of houses. Thank you very much for this great post.

  6. A while back, I was sitting in the car waiting for my friend and I saw several of these pass by on the Interstate.  Then, Michael and I saw a program on TV about the tiny homes. They’re really quite interesting. 

    Your article was very well written and quite interesting.  I wouldn’t mind living in one of these and traveling if I could.

  7. Hello Marina

    I enjoyed your rendition of a true gypsy. The way we were and the way we are now. Yes we sometimes get a bad rap. I am sure all types of people have their bad ones. Living the gypsy life today is more of an environmental savior if you will and I wish more would take on this lifestyle. Thank you for bringing this out for people to see.

  8. Wow, what information is read from this awesome article. I love history examples because it gives me a vision going back to the past to relate to the event. Additionally, tiny houses are the best way to save lots of money in the long-term. Especially if you are single. I love that you mention the modern Gypsy because I always wanted to know how they would look in today’s modern day.

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