Teal Brown, (pictured right) recently started the Wishbone Tiny Homes construction business with his father, Gerry Brown (left). They're also forming a group that will push for changes in local and state rules to accommodate “implementing tiny homes in Asheville." Photo by Carrie Eidson.

Will tiny homes be Asheville’­s next big thing?

The blogosphere is abuzz these days with romantic visions of picturesque miniature dwellings. And a growing number of local advocates say the “tiny home movement” could help achieve a wealth of positive outcomes, from environmental efficiencies to enhanced affordability. Amid the swelling interest, however, many hurdles remain.

Mold Conundrum: Tenants at Pinnacle Ridge (now known as Hawthorne Northside), an apartment complex near UNC Asheville on Merrimon Avenue, say that problems with mold proved incredibly difficult to solve; city officials say they’re limited in what actions they can take. photos by Max Cooper

Breaking the mold: complaints spotlight Asheville’­s rental housing issues

Multiple complaints about mold, rot, and other woes at a Merrimon Avenue apartment complex earlier this year casts doubt on the ability of local governments to deal with what many see as a serious health issue, leaving tenants feeling powerless to get their grievances addressed. And with the Asheville area having some of the highest housing costs in the state and one-third of its working population earning low wages, many local renters face similar issues.