What Counties in South Dakota Allow Tiny Houses – Rules & Regulations You Need To Consider

South Dakota

The state of South Dakota is home to significant rural regions, a varied housing stock, and tiny home sales. Since no state laws govern tiny houses, each county and municipality is free to establish its regulations.

The need for licenses, zoning regulations, and building code requirements are the elements that influence whether tiny houses are lawful.

You encounter distinct chances and obstacles depending on whether your small house is on wheels or a solid foundation.

Keep reading to the end to discover what counties in South Dakota allow tiny homes, and what regulations and rules you need to know before moving in.

Tiny House Prices in South Dakota 

Before you embark on your tiny house adventure, you should determine how much you can pay and what affordable alternatives are available for tiny homes.

Good news! We offer a solution that satisfies all requirements and financial limitations so you may begin the construction of your house. Check out the South Dakota tiny house for sale!

What Counties in South Dakota Allow Tiny Houses?

Several counties in South Dakota allow tiny houses, including Minnehaha County, Pennington County, and Lincoln County. These counties have either amended their zoning regulations or have no specific requirements prohibiting tiny houses. As the popularity of tiny houses continues to grow, more counties may consider allowing them in the future.

Pennington County

Pennington County is in the western portion of South Dakota and is well-known for its natural beauty and plenty of outdoor leisure options. Tiny homes are welcome in Pennington County, making them a good choice for anybody wishing to live in the country but yet have access to tiny homes.

Pennington County demands that your small dwellings be constructed with a stable foundation and fulfill all conventional building codes.

Minnehaha County

Another South Dakota county that permits small residences is Minnehaha County, which is home to the city of Sioux Falls. For small homeowners looking for a mix of city living and the great outdoors, this vibrant neighborhood offers a blend of rural charm and urban conveniences.

You must comply with all housing standards and construct your tiny house on a solid foundation in Minnehaha County. Furthermore, in forestry or agricultural zones, the county permits the construction of tiny dwellings as long as they are not the principal residence on the land.

Lincoln County

A Tiny House on Wheels (THOW) must be anchored to a base if you want to park it in Lincoln County, South Dakota. If your THOW is not a foundation, it is a recreational vehicle and will be subject to separate regulations for long-term parking.

Tiny House Regulations And Rules In South Dakota

Local zoning ordinances and building codes determine regulations for tiny houses rather than statewide rules. Many areas require minimum square footage for permanent dwellings to impact where tiny houses will be located. Some areas also have rules about the type of foundation a tiny house must have and utility connections.

Permanent Structure Rules

These residences follow the same rules as regular houses to fulfill community safety requirements and aesthetic standards.

  • Every tiny home constructed on a foundation abides by Appendix Q of 2018. They also abide by the International Residential Code.
  • A tiny house cannot have more than 400 square feet, not including lofts. The ceiling height of every tiny house must be 6 feet and 4 inches. The ceilings in all other shared spaces of the tiny house should be at least 6 feet and 8 inches high.
  • If the tiny home has a loft for storage, you will need to install a ladder there. It is a living area, thus stairs are necessary.
  • You may use your loft as a living or sleeping space, but it must have a floor size of at least 35 square feet.
  • Handrails on staircases have to abide by R311.7.8 and R312.1 sections.
  • In addition to serving as a window, every tiny house needs to include at least one window designated as an emergency escape. The roof window adheres to R310 requirements for rescue openings and emergency escapes.

Temporary Structure Rules

Often called auxiliary dwelling units (ADUs), temporary tiny houses are smaller homes that can be next to or added to an existing family home.

ADUs and other affordable housing choices are welcome in South Dakota. However, county-specific laws apply. These buildings can be holiday rentals or guest cottages for brief visits. Get approval in certain places to build a small, mobile house in a business area.

  • To live on a designated piece of land in a small house, you must obtain permission from local authorities.
  • Adhere to all South Dakota laws and regulations to ensure your tiny home satisfies all safety standards and construction guidelines.

Transitional Structure Rules

Recreational Vehicle Act regulates tiny houses on wheels in South Dakota as transitional constructions.

Governmental and nonprofit institutions frequently offer these mechanisms to assist those in need. Transitional buildings are essential for meeting housing demands in South Dakota towns, even if they may be subject to laws.

  • If you want to register and license your tiny mobile home in South Dakota, it must meet RV requirements.
  • Your tiny home on wheels has to be on a single chassis. The small mobile home can only measure 8.5 feet in width and 13.5 feet in height.
  • It should feature a kitchen, bathroom, and sleeping area, among other essential utilities.
  • Towing your small house on public roads requires a special travel permit from the South Dakota Department of Transportation.

In South Dakota, Where Can I Build A Tiny House?

The selection of a cozy place to consider home is essential. Select a licensed tiny house builder to help you with the project, handle any paperwork, and guarantee that your home complies with construction requirements.

Even though it takes a lot of work, building a tiny house doesn’t have to be tough if done right. The following places are the common locations for tiny dwellings:

  • RV parks
  • National Parks and campgrounds
  • Tiny house communities
  • Private properties

Tiny House Communities in South Dakota

Tiny house communities are popping up in South Dakota, offering a minimalist and sustainable lifestyle. These communities provide a sense of belonging and encourage a closer connection with nature. With a focus on being environmentally friendly and promoting a way of living, tiny house-friendly communities are attracting people looking for a change.

Tiny Town Extended Stay Campground

Tiny Town Extended Stay Campground in Spearfish, South Dakota, provides monthly and long-term camping alternatives. Tiny Town offers fully equipped campgrounds for extended stays in your mobile small house. Showers, sewage, electricity, water, laundry, and trash are among the amenities of campgrounds.

Sioux Falls Veterans Community Project

The Veterans Community Project (VCP), a specialized community of 25 tiny houses with on-site facilities to assist homeless Veterans in their return to an independent and secure existence, is on 2 acres in northwest Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Furniture, appliances, housewares, bedding, and utilities are all included in every unit.

Tiny House Builders Near Me

There’s no need to research South Carolina tiny house builders to pick out your ideal home because Great Lakes Tiny Homes has an enormous assortment of tiny homes sent anywhere in the country.

The RV Industry Association (RVIA) has approved Great Lakes Tiny Homes as a builder. Its specialty is upholding the strictest safety, legal, and tiny home construction rules in conjunction with the highest manufacturing standards.

Do I Need a Certified Builder?

You do, indeed! You could think about doing it yourself, although it involves more risks and unknowns.

Purchasing a small house from a builder with RVIA certification, like Great Lakes Tiny Homes, ensures it follows all relevant rules and legislation.

Because it ensures the durability, strength, and safety of the materials in your home, it also fosters confidence in you.

Selecting an approved builder makes securing finance and insurance easier. Also, meeting RVIA criteria ensures a secure and habitable small house.


Can You Make a Tiny House in South Dakota Your Main Residence?

Without a doubt, yes! It is legal to reside in a small house full-time in South Dakota.

Remember that local laws and regulations may differ based on where you live. Speak with the local governments and zoning authorities to see whether the small house complies with all applicable laws and regulations, including inspection requirements.

Working with South Dakota’s licensed builders made real living a more relaxed and environmentally responsible lifestyle.

In South Dakota, What Is the Minimum Size Requirement for Tiny Houses?

In South Dakota, the IRC standards followed in the region and the local small house regulations determine the maximum size of a dwelling.

  • The IRC requires a minimum of 400 square feet for a tiny dwelling.
  • A bathroom and a kitchen area are necessities for the tiny house.

Sure, but you have to register and give the tiny residence a South Dakota state title. It needs to be IRC-compliant and built as a HUD-manufactured house.

If it’s a mobile tiny house, ensure it complies with the laws governing temporary housing. It must be a minimum of 40 inches in length and 8 inches wide, with a total area of 320 square feet, and designed for residential use.

A tiny house is an excellent choice for an extra living unit if one family member wishes to live alone.


Living in a tiny house in South Dakota is possible if you follow local building and zoning laws. Although the state supports creative housing options like ADUs and THOWs, it’s crucial to stay up to date on the constantly changing legal landscape and communicate with local authorities to guarantee compliance.

Knowing the particular county laws and ordinances is essential to having an incredible tiny house living experience in South Dakota, regardless of whether you’re looking for a permanent, temporary, or transitional tiny home building.

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