How the Tiny House Movement is Saving the Town of Spur, Texas

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Tony Maples Photography


West Texas holds a little piece of paradise for those looking to downsize everything. Spur, Texas, has become the first self-proclaimed ‘tiny’ house-friendly town in the nation, and people are paying attention.

Spur is located about an hour and ten minutes east of Lubbock. In 2014, the town had a vision for what life could become in their community, and those with tiny house plans were more than welcome. The plan for this town of just over 1,000 residents is slowly taking shape. They welcome minimalists and those of the miniature house movement to settle in their midst. They welcome those of creative innovation, self-sufficiency, and sustainability through practical means. In particular, they feel that this percentage of the population values community and lifestyle over busyness and the rat race of being an over-worked city-dweller.

How the Tiny House Movement is Saving the Town of Spur, Texas

Photo: Facebook/Tiny House Listings

Aside from the small homes and small atmosphere, there are a few small restaurants in Spur, along with two gas stations (one which is open 24 hours), a good school system offering Pre-K through grade 12 (with a student-to-teacher ratio of less than 9:1,) a library, a city swimming pool, and a 9-hole golf course. Not only that, but the cost of living in Spur has been identified as being very low, and land is said to be affordable.

The plan for a tiny house community in Spur came as a result of a dramatic population drain to the larger Texas urban centers over the years. At one time a town with a population in the thousands, Spur continues to have the infrastructure that’s necessary for a good life of small means. City utilities, high-speed internet through fiber-optic lines and paved roads are all part of the package in a town which is now home to approximately 1,200 people. With literally hundreds of vacant lots, a number of vacant commercial establishments, and several abandoned buildings, Spur is redefining itself as the perfect place for the next generation of homesteaders of sorts. A revolution in the housing market and the burgeoning tiny house movement is being pioneered here. The town welcomes those “…with an open mindset to come and create something amazing while realizing their own aspirations.”

How the Tiny House Movement is Saving the Town of Spur, Texas

Photo: Facebook/Matchbox Mansions

By offering an affordable way of life in a community where it’s safe to “put down roots,” Spur, Texas, has become the poster child for those fighting today’s cost-of-living. They’re working toward developing a community from the remains of an old mindset, and it’s working. “I love it here, I love it,”  Carol Haefner told The Texas Bucket List. “I came here to build a tiny house. I had no idea I’d actually fall in love with Texas and Spur.” Haefner moved to Spur from California and now resides in a home which is 12 by 18 in square footage. And she’s not alone. Danny Schallenberg, a tiny home builder in Spur, has said that the average miniature home there normally costs between 35K and 45K. The smallest he’s seen has a total of 83 square feet! “Spur is still the first to do it and has done it and it’s paid off big time for them,” he told The Texas Bucket List. “People are downsizing their life, they’re downsizing their possessions, they’re downsizing their car, they’re downsizing their house, they’re downsizing their taxes, and it’s working.” He’s succinct. Just like the town he’s proud to make a life in. Welcome to Spur, Texas, where the American dream still holds true, in miniature form, and for less than half the price!