Before I got into tiny houses I had always wanted to remodel an old Airstream trailer (if I ever come across a used one at a good price I may revive that dream, so I specifically don’t look for one :). So I was immediately interested when I was contact by Mariah from The Comet Camper last year for an interview. She and her boyfriend Matt have been remodeling an old Avalon vintage trailer and using sustainable materials in the process. I think during the interview I might have asked her as many questions as she asked me :) Anyway, it’s a really cool project and they are both awesome people.
Well Mariah recently redesigned her website and is now offering an e-course focused on simplifying your life. I thought this was a really cool idea since so many people get interested in tiny houses primarily with the goal of downsizing and finding more time. I tell people all the time that you can start that process well before taking the big step of living tiny, and still reap many of the benefits. Also, while many people may want to simplify, without guidance and a little nudge a lot of those people won’t.
So take a minute to check out Mariah’s site, I know you won’t be disappointed :)
For a little while I’ve wanted to turn one of my house designs into a model that could serve as inspiration for someone aspiring to live tiny. Well a few weeks ago I submitted my design to a 3D printing service and today I got my first model in the mail! Check it out, it’s pretty cool!
You can’t see it in this picture, but when you look inside you can see both the sleeping loft and storage lofts inside.
It’s 5-1/2” long.
Even the trailer is detailed underneath.
If you want one for yourself you can find them at Shapeways. They ended up costing a lot more than I had expected, so they aren’t for everyone. But it does look really cool on my desk :)
Our last workshop, held back in October, was at a place called Highland Lake Cove located in Flat Rock North Carolina just south of Asheville. A local from the area had turned me on to the place and when I went to check it out I was really impressed. Not only because of how pretty it was but also because of the progress they are making towards having a tiny house community (one of the first that I know of on the east coast). On my last day there, as I was headed out, I recorded some video of the area and have been meaning to make it available for months now. Well, we have a new workshop coming up and I promised myself I wouldn’t let it go past then. So today I finally took the time to put it together and get it out there. So check it out :)
PS. I was so impressed that I feel like the video comes off like it’s an advertisement, but I promise I wasn’t paid anything for it.
I’ve had a lot of people ask me when we were planning on hosting another workshop and I’m proud to announce that it has been scheduled! It will be held in Cumming GA (just north of Atlanta) on May 24-25.
In this workshop you’ll not only learn the ins and outs of tiny houses (including zoning issues and loopholes, information on trailers, and other tiny house specific information), but you’ll also get hands-on experience. We’ll build a cross section of a house which will give you experience with framing, sheathing, insulation, electrical, and plumbing. There’s no substitute for the confidence gained from actually picking up a tool and building something.
We always have a lot of fun at the workshops and it’s just a great being around so many like-minded people that are into tiny houses.
Our past workshops have all sold out, but I decided to drop the prices on this one to make it a little more affordable for everyone. We also provide two meals a day as well as snacks and drinks (I’ve had people tell me the food was the best part, which I’m not entirely sure is a compliment ;) The number of seats are limited, so get yours before we sell out!
I hope to see you there!
For more information, go to: http://www.tinyhomebuilders.com/tiny-house-workshops/Atlanta
Here’s a cool inforgraphic someone sent me concerning furnishing a small home. Some pretty interesting info (I’m a sucker for an infographic :)
Furniture Origami Saving Space In Your Apartment via Wholesale Furniture Brokers
Last year while speaking at the Tiny House Fair a friend of mine, Deek Diedricksen (whom I’m sure you’ve heard of), recorded this video of a bunch of us giving tips on utilizing every space in a tiny house. Check it out!
I’m frequently asked what the hardest part of building a tiny house is. People expect that I’ll respond that it’s the electrical or the plumbing (the two tasks that seem to scare people the most), or perhaps attaching the house to the trailer. But really the hardest part is just getting started, and taking that first real step. By real step I’m not referring to the planning phase, while technically that is where you start when building a tiny house, it isn’t a commitment (it’s easy to walk away from an unstarted plan).
It’s human nature after all to resist change and to avoid the unknown. And for most who are building a tiny house, since many have no construction experience, that means a tremendous amount of firsts. Then, beyond the construction, you’ve got the actual living in a tiny house. Something that isn’t exactly common quite yet and thus not ‘normal’ as viewed by society.
Those can be really scary. Some people consider living in a tiny house and then immediately abandon the idea thinking that they just can’t do it (and for some, they are right since it isn’t a fit for everyone). I’ve seen others that have been in the planning phase for 5 years and that have attended 5 workshops who can’t seem to move past the planning stage. That doesn’t count as getting started :).
While building and living in a tiny house can seem insurmountable when looking at everything that goes into it at once, you can do it. Just look around on the internet and see the countless individuals and couples who you wouldn’t think could do it, doing it. The difference is they picked up a hammer and got started.
We’re having another open house in Deland FL on November 23rd! Our open houses aren’t a typical open house as they are really more an opportunity for you to see a tiny house in person and hang out for a couple hours with likeminded people. They have been really popular in the past drawing about 30-40 people driving as much as 8 hours to get there. The Central Florida Tiny House Enthusiast Meetup group will also be showing up so I expect this one to be our biggest open house yet.
I’ll have two houses there; our Simple Living design that is just a shell, and a new single level design that hopefully will be finished by then (fingers crossed).
If you’re interested check out the eVite and I’ll see you there
I was recently invited to bring a couple tiny houses and to speak at both the Jacksonville and Orlando Home Shows this year. I was really excited because I thought it was a great opportunity to introduce a lot of people to the tiny house movement, who might otherwise never hear about it.
I was so busy getting ready for the first show in Jacksonville that I really didn’t get that much of a chance to write about it. I had planned to bring two homes to both shows, but only one was completed and we were rushing to finish the second one (a new design that I will be announcing soon). However, because of delays in getting the windows we didn’t finish the house in time, which was just as well since the show hadn’t allotted enough room for two houses anyways*.
Well the Jacksonville show has come and gone and it ended up being a lot of fun (and work). I got to meet a lot of people and if I had to guess at least 20,000 people got to see and/or walk through a tiny house (most for the first time). It was not uncommon for us to have at least 80 people in line to go into the house at any one time. We were definitely one of the more popular exhibits.
This coming weekend (Oct 4-6) we will be at the Orlando Home Show to do it all again. If you get a chance, swing by and say hi :)
* That’s actually a funny phenomenon with tiny houses. When you tell someone about tiny houses and you say they are between 100 and 200 square feet, people are so used to larger areas that they often think of a much smaller size in their head. Whenever we show our houses people are ALWAYS surprised to hear how small they are in terms of square footage.
We introduced a line of tiny house trailers a few months ago, but since the trailers are manufactured down in Florida and I live near Atlanta I hadn’t had a chance to take any pictures or them (and my Dad, who lives in Florida, is no Ansel Adams ;). But I finally went back down there to work on a house for the Jacksonville and Atlanta Home Shows and brought a trailer back with me to deliver to one of my workshop attendees (that makes 6 now that are building house, woo hoo). So I took the opportunity to take some pictures and record a video showing off the features of the trailers. You can get more information at http://www.tinyhomebuilders.com/tiny-houses/trailers