Add news
Ichigo Tanuki x Angels - Gimme! Gimme! Gimme! (ABBA cover)
Russian.city
March 2010
April 2010
May 2010June 2010July 2010
August 2010
September 2010October 2010
November 2010
December 2010
January 2011
February 2011March 2011April 2011May 2011June 2011July 2011August 2011September 2011October 2011November 2011December 2011January 2012February 2012March 2012April 2012May 2012June 2012July 2012August 2012September 2012October 2012November 2012December 2012January 2013February 2013March 2013April 2013May 2013June 2013July 2013August 2013September 2013October 2013November 2013December 2013January 2014February 2014March 2014April 2014May 2014June 2014July 2014August 2014September 2014October 2014November 2014December 2014January 2015February 2015March 2015April 2015May 2015June 2015July 2015August 2015September 2015October 2015November 2015December 2015January 2016February 2016March 2016April 2016May 2016June 2016July 2016August 2016September 2016October 2016November 2016December 2016January 2017February 2017March 2017April 2017May 2017June 2017July 2017August 2017September 2017October 2017November 2017December 2017January 2018February 2018March 2018April 2018May 2018June 2018July 2018August 2018September 2018October 2018November 2018December 2018January 2019February 2019March 2019April 2019May 2019June 2019July 2019August 2019September 2019October 2019November 2019December 2019January 2020February 2020March 2020April 2020May 2020June 2020July 2020August 2020September 2020October 2020November 2020December 2020January 2021February 2021March 2021April 2021May 2021June 2021
123456789101112
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
27
28
29
30
News Every Day |

A single mom living in a 325-square-foot house shares what it's like to be one of the few Black tiny-home owners she sees

Untitled design   2021 05 20T101350.068

Summary List Placement

Alexis Monkhouse shares a 325-square-foot house with her 2-year-old daughter Nalini in a tiny-home neighborhood in Tampa, Florida.

Monkhouse, 25, chronicles her life as a Black, single mother living in a tiny home on her Instagram page, @thistinyjourney, where she has 1,700 followers.

She told Insider she is one of the few Black tiny-home owners in her neighborhood, and that the majority of people she encounters in the tiny-living movement are white.

"I've gone through #tinyhouse and #tinyhousefamily, and you can scroll for pages and you won't see any people of color," she said.

123292802_124100312587955_1394794720865329955_n

Monkhouse told Insider that being a person of color in the tiny-home world can feel isolating at times but that she tries not to dwell on it. "It is awful because I'm sure that there's more of us out there but we just get drowned out by all the white people living tiny," she said. 

Despite this, Monkhouse said that in her experience the community has been welcoming since she moved in. 

After her mother died, Monkhouse used her mom's life-insurance money to design her tiny home for around $75,000 in January 2018 and moved into the space in June 2019. Tiny living had been on Monkhouse's mind for some time before that; as a graduate student, Monkhouse said she felt stuck in a rent and loan-payment cycle and came across tiny homes on her search for financial freedom.

Now, Monkhouse hopes to encourage more people of color to consider the lifestyle by sharing the unpolished realities that social media often doesn't show about tiny living, from the challenges of her dating life or how a 2-year-old can destroy a clean living room.

Alexis Monkhouse says she wants to lead by example to encourage more people of color to consider tiny living

While living in small spaces isn't new, the tiny-house movement gained popularity in the aftermath of the 2008 housing crash, according to The New York Times. With the rising interest, a design aesthetic followed that enticed influencers — a group that's overwhelmingly white, as Insider's Samantha Grindell previously reported.

Monkhouse told Insider that she worries a lack of representation might discourage other people of color from joining the lifestyle. "If you don't see someone doing something, then you're going to think it's not for me," she said.

The tiny-home owner says she is setting out to be that example for others by sharing videos, images, and captions that showcase real life. For example, one of Monkhouse's posts addresses experiencing nature for the first time and breaking stereotypes associated with the outdoors; "honestly growing up we were told that that was 'white people stuff,'" she wrote in the caption. Other posts highlight how she's embracing being a single mom.

 

"I'm glad that I'm at least showing some people that this is doable and that people who look like us are out here doing it," she said. 

Monkhouse said her experience has been positive because she had her sister for support; when Monkhouse bought her tiny house, her sister purchased a matching home. Today, they're neighbors. Having her sister next door has given her a sense of security, comfort, and a person to share experiences with, she said.

Monkhouse said she is also setting an example for her daughter by giving her a different experience from one that she had as a child. Growing up, Monkhouse said success in her family was often tied to having a large house. She said she's hoping to change that narrative for Nalini.

"I think it will open her eyes more, there's not just one specific way to live," she said about Nalini growing up in a tiny house. "I don't want her being scared of alternative lifestyles because it's mostly white people."

Untitled design   2021 05 20T101758.147

Monkhouse isn't the first to notice the lack of representation in the online tiny-home community

In recent years, groups like the Tiny House Trailblazers and Diversify Vanlife have formed to advocate for more diversity within the space and bring awareness to the challenges of being a minority tiny-home owner.

Jewel Pearson, founder of Tiny House Trailblazers, wrote in a 2016 blog post about some of the issues Black tiny-home owners are more likely to face than their white counterparts, such as the racial wealth gap, housing discrimination, and gentrification, as well as the fact that many parking areas for mobile homes happen to be in rural areas, where, Pearson wrote, "historically black people aren't always welcome or safe because of prejudice and racism."

She also acknowledged how the lifestyle may not appeal to some who "aren't too far removed from having lived in one of the original 'tiny houses' and/or they may have family members still living in the original 'tiny houses', and not so much by choice."

However, Pearson went on to say that she often hears from people of color who say she has inspired them to try the lifestyle, and says on the website's about page that "for many, seeing me was the first time they'd seen a Black person as part of the tiny house movement."

Similarly, Diversify Vanlife, which launched in 2019, urges members to pledge to "actively work to create inclusive, safe space, both outdoor and virtual, for equal-access adventure, exploration, conversation, and community," according to the group's Instagram account, which has 24,000 followers. 

The groups serve to amplify underrepresented voices in the movement as spaces where people can express the challenges they face, like racism in person and online, or join community events and gain access to resources, such as how to affordably build a home or strategies for staying safe on the road.

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: 10 surprising ways sounds are made for movies





Read also

Apple will now let you choose which parts of your phone will update

Cesc Fabregas reveals he left Chelsea because of ‘smart and intelligent’ Jorginho after pulling strings for Italy

Artist uses stain remover to create massive portrait of the Queen on muddy rug





News, articles, comments, with a minute-by-minute update, now on Today24.pro



Today24.pro — latest news 24/7. You can add your news instantly now — here
News Every Day

These are 5 of Kyiv’s best coworking spaces