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Legal Requirements for Tiny Houses

It is important to note that each council nationwide has slightly different requirements / laws around Tiny Houses.

We have made a considerable effort to make our chalets comply with these rules, however depending on your location it would be prudent to make some enquiries before purchasing a chalet.

 

Below is a list of some of the requirements we have considered in the design on our Elite Chalets.

Mountain Ridge

Road transportation

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NZTA outline the requirements for transport of 'Tiny Homes' on the road under the subsection 'Light Trailers' on their website.

 

The maximum legal width of a trailer in NZ is 2550mm.

However a "load" on a trailer "which is readily removable" may be up to 3100mm wide as long as wide-load flags are attached to all four corners of the trailer.

Elite Chalets are fixed to the trailer so the maximum width at the eaves of the iron roof is 2550mm, however being that the folding deck and veranda are "readily removable" (attached on gate type hinges with securing pins) they are considered a "load". The folded width is 2650mm which falls well within the requirements, provided the flags are attached. 

  

The maximum legal height on the road is 4.3m and the Chalets are only 3.8m high.  

The maximum 'on road weight' for a tandem axle trailer with one braked axle is 2500kgs, which is the weight of the EC580 Chalet.

 

The maximum 'on road weight' for a tandem or tri-axle trailer with two braked axles and an automatic break-away braking system is 3500kgs.  The final weight of the EC700 is yet to be determined however it will be less than 3500kgs.

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Setup on your property

There is no requirement for a council permit for the Elite Chalets as they are legally categorized as 'vehicles' not 'buildings'.

A number of councils have previously challenged this in court, with regard to some very large 'Tiny Homes', and in each case the court ruled that they were exempt from the building consent requirements because legally they are classified as 'vehicles' and not a 'building'.

 

It is likely most initial setups will require the work of both an electrician (to install a caravan plug on your house) and a plumber (for water and waste).

However, legally it is important to remain 'disconnectable' without the need to again engage the services of an electrician or plumber.

With the Elite Chalet system this is easily achieved.   

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