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Interview with Try It Tiny Founder Maggie Daniels

The global phenomenon that is tiny houses has caught the business savvy interest of many a folk across North America. So much so Maggie Daniels quit her portfolio management job to work on a startup she hopes will capitalize on this multi-million dollar industry.

Jump right into the interview:

The Airbnb for tiny homes and property renting, Try it Tiny connects tiny home and vacant land owners with people looking to rent them out in the United States.What started out as needing a tiny house to tend to her seasonal livestock while she rented out her own property, turned into one of Daniel’s true passions and a flourishing business.

“They tiny house movement has been a big thing for a while now, stating originally when settlers claimed land across the continent, living in nothing larger than 400 sq ft. and having the ability to move around whenever they please,” Maggie says.

Going tiny happens for two reasons: 1) financial flexibility and 2) geographic mobility. While buying a tiny house achieves the need to have an affordable place to live, people often don’t have a spot to put their tiny home, nor are they interested in purchasing a bunch of land, which ends up being counterintuitive to living a minimal live.

Peer-to-peer borrowing, lending and renting has also fuelled this market. Over the years the sharing economy has boomed, seeing site after site pop up being the next “Airbnb” of “fill in the blank.”

Tiny homes range from 100-400 sq.ft. and some of the homes on Try it Tiny are remarkable and well equipped ranging from classic farm houses to chic modern homes to Airstreams. Land rental’s are typically on farms and we found some as inexpensive as $10 per night to rent, which is quite remarkable considering even the most lack-lustre of campgrounds are well over $25 per night.

What’s interesting and more and more appealing is this alternative stay servicing, allowing campers the choice between a campground, private piece of land or something even more extravagant such as a winery, farm, luscious orchard or near beachfront property.

We are thrilled to see this becoming more popular as tastes for travel change over time and RVers continually look for unique and secluded spots to set up camp.

Try it Tiny is US based with, at the time, 500 listings in over 40 stats including Hawaii. Daniels is particularly excited to build the community of home-owners and land-owners, and visit the first 100 listings within the first year, a daunting task if you ask us.

On the admin side of things, the platform is free for any host to sign up and create a listing but there is a 9.5% service fee charged to the guest, which is how Try it Tiny makes their money, and not an unreasonable ask. Most tiny homes come equipped with a bedroom, living room, kitchen and bathroom; just enough space to really enjoy a weekend or week away from the every day hustle and bustle of your hometown life.

In our podcast, which you’ll find below, we explore how and why Daniels started Try it Tiny, the tiny house movement, and keys to being a good host and good guests. She reveals some of her favourite homes so far and the new “dream it tiny” design resource, which is now live on the website. We can certainly see this taking off in the near future. Keep in mind this was recorded about 6 months ago and some some of the events Daniels mentions have already happened. Enjoy!

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