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Oxford Native Hopes ‘Tiny Homes’ Help Housing Need in Lafayette County

By Alyssa Schnugg

News editor

alyssa.schnugg@hottytoddy.com

Two ‘tiny houses’ were placed on property off CR 217 by Josh McGlawn recently. They will be rental units. Photo provided by Josh McGlawn

When Josh McGlawn ran for a seat on the Lafayette County Board of Supervisors in 2019, one issue he felt needed more attention was the lack of affordable housing in the area.

While he didn’t win in that election, the Oxford-native still cares about affordable housing and is currently building two space-efficient homes on property he owns off County Road 217 that will soon be up for rent.

“One of the main cries from the community is affordable housing and it doesn’t seem like much is being done about it,” McGlawn told Hotty Toddy News Tuesday. “I started doing some research and learned more about the ‘tiny house’ movement.”

While the term ‘tiny house’ has become the catchphrase for small, studio-like structures, McGlawn said he prefers to call them space-efficient homes.

“The term ‘Tiny House’ often has a negative connotation to it,” McGlawn told Hotty Toddy News Tuesday. “Some people think they’re pop-up campers and something you attack to a truck or something. It’s basically like a studio apartment.”

McGlawn received approval to place two homes on the property from the Lafayette County Planning Commission and the Board of Supervisors. The structures must meet Lafayette County building codes and be strapped down like other modular or mobile homes.

“They are very safe,” he said. “Some of these structures even exceed the building codes in some aspects. They’re perfect for a grad student, a single person or even a couple.”

The free-standing houses are about 300 square feet in size. Designed like a studio, the living room, bedroom and kitchen are in one area with the bathroom being the only other room in the unit.

McGlawn said he hopes to have them ready and available to rent out by August.

“I’m doing some renovations and I plan on making these look as nice as any development in Oxford but they’ll be way more affordable,” he said.

McGlawn works for his family’s construction business, McGlawn Services and produces the podcast, Real Talk Unlimited, which focuses on mental health issues. He also creates short films and he and his wife have an investment property business.

As of now, McGlawn only plans on building the two space-efficient homes on the CR 217 property but hasn’t ruled out future plans if they catch on and he hopes other developers will start thinking out of the box to provide more affordable homes, whether rentals or homes people can purchase.

“I can’t say it’s in my immediate plans to build more, but it’s definitely a dream of mine to give this community something it needs. Houses around here are just so expensive now.”

McGlawn said people who are interested in learning more or having conversations about space-efficient homes are welcome to email him at qualatinvestments@gmail.com.


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