PITTSBORO, N.C. (WNCN) – A decade-long journey to build over a dozen tiny homes finally came to fruition in Chatham County.
They sit on UNC’s Farm at Penny Lane, serving as a therapeutic space for those with mental illness.
“Most folks also have a disability check coming in and it’s not a lot and so they need affordable housing,” Farm Program Manager Matt Ballard said. “Unfortunately, we’re just not seeing enough of affordable housing.”
That’s why Cross Disability Services and the UNC School of Social Work completed the Tiny Homes Village in Pittsboro.
The 15 houses are for veterans and patients with mental illness on a fixed income.
“It may be a very small drop in the bucket,” Tiny Homes Village Co-Director Thava Mahadevan said. “It’s not going to solve all the housing issues. But we wanted to come up with something that can help people have a small home that they can call their own.”
Each tiny home is just over 400 square feet, costing nearly $50,000 each to build with mostly private funds.
Those living there will pay about $300 a month.
“They have another good chunk of the money — $600 or $700 dollars left – to buy medicine, buy food, all the other things,” Mahadevan said. “Because right now, their whole check is gone to pay for the room right now.”
The village is also set to add a clubhouse, walking trails and a pavilion.
“The Tiny Home Village is meant to be a home and a place to belong,” Ballard said.
The UNC School of Medicine and Department of Psychiatry also took part in the project and a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Thursday. Right now, organizers are getting the applications ready so that people can move in as soon as possible.