Tiny homes - case law and determinations

Sections 8-9 Building Act 2004, section 8 Land Transport Act 1998

Tiny Homes are small residential structures, often built on trailers, that have features similar to caravans or recreational vehicles. These structures can be transportable, although this is not always the case. Whether a Tiny Home is subject to the Building Act 2004, or to the Land Transport Act 1998, will depend on the characteristics and features of the structure.

Broadly speaking, if a structure is:
Not a vehicle AND
Immovable AND
Occupied long term.
Then it is subject to the Building Act 2004.

Some of the in-depth questions to consider are:
  • Does the design enable it to be moved/relocated with relative ease?
  • Has it been moved before?
  • Could it be moved in the future?
  • Is it connected to features that would need to be deconstructed if it was to be moved such as foundations, or a deck?
  • Does it rest on wheels alone or is it self-supported?
  • Does it require a WOF?
  • Are there features common to vehicles e.g. suspension, shocks, brakes, turn signals, number plates, etc?
  • Is it connected to on site services such as water, wastewater, or electricity?