Zack Giffin on Skiing, Tiny Houses, & Big Solutions (Ep.275)

Skier Zack Giffin (host of the TV series, Tiny House Nation & co-host of the podcast, Tiny House Tales) makes a compelling case for how smaller living spaces can be a significant part of the solution to affordable housing; homelessness; climate issues, energy consumption, and creating more socio-economically diverse communities — which is a fancy way of saying, real, actual communities. Today’s conversation is another important addition to our conversations on mountain town economics & affordable housing solutions.

Zack Giffin, Skier (4:39)
Best Ski Trip Story & Moving to Baker (6:46)
How Zack got into Tiny Houses (12:59)
Building his first Tiny House (18:08)
The Launch of “Tiny House Nation” (26:23)
Regulations & Tiny Houses (31:56)
Average Size of New Houses (45:35)
Rules & Laws Against Tiny Houses (48:52)
What Can Individuals Do to Help? (58:42)
What Counts as “Tiny House” (1:11:09)
Price Ranges (1:15:45)
CRAFTED pod + Functioning in Smaller Spaces (1:17:54)
Zack’s Other Projects (1:21:43)
Veterans’ Non-profit, Operation Tiny Home (1:24:33)
Zack’s podcast, Tiny House Tales (1:30:47)
Where to Learn More (1:34:47)

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3 comments on “Zack Giffin on Skiing, Tiny Houses, & Big Solutions (Ep.275)”

  1. Tiny houses still present a density issue. Yes, you can fit 4-6 tiny homes on a lot, but you can easily double or triple the density by building up into an apartment building. We need to get over the idea of a detached home in these resort towns. there is too much demand and not enough land.

    I’d argue that resort jurisdictions should require 1-2 basement apartments for long term leases for each house built, or implement the Aspen Property Transfer Tax

  2. What a great discussion, frequently podcasts and interviews are vague when it comes to the details due to the brevity of the format but Zack’s background and knowledge really come through. There is not any single solution to remedy the lack of available housing in mountain towns and local zoning laws should allow enough flexibility to allow potential solutions like Tiny Houses in residential areas.

  3. One of the best podcast episodes of any podcast I’ve listened to in some time. For the past five years, I’ve lived in a mountain town in the Interior West. The median home price is now $1,800,000.00. The median rental price is $3,725.00. Over a five year period, I paid my landlord $97,000.00 in rent. During the five years that I rented my home, the value of the home went from $300,000.00 to $1,000,000.00. I am a teacher, ski guide and ski coach. The day my landlord told me I had 45 days to vacate the property so that he could sell the house, I realized that was it. I no longer could live in this mountain town in the Interior West, and one may think any mountain town in the Interior West. My Daughter and I had to leave our community, school, ski team, clients, friends. I don’t think I’ll ever go back to that mountain town. I’m encouraged by Zack’s thoughtful approach, both qualitatively and quantitatively, in approaching the economics of housing, the impact on ongoing climate change, and the impact of both on migration patterns. Great episode.

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