I don’t remember the exact moment that a decision was made to build a tiny home. I do however, remember a series of events that led upto it:
- Seeing over 50% of your income dissapear on rent
- Realising we owned too much crap
- Wanting to save for land, but realising how impossible that was
- Wanting to avoid the ‘old way’ of doing things (Mortgage – ‘Death’-gage)
- Discovering ‘Living Big in a Tiny House‘ youtube channel
- reducing our impact on the environment
It was the amalgamation of all these things that pushed us slowly and unknowingly towards the Tiny House project.
There was a line in an interview during one episode of the ‘Living Big in a Tiny House” show. It went something along the lines of:
“You can never get ahead whilst paying rent!”
The way many people have escaped the excessive rental rates of our current world, is to downsize, live on a boat, in a trailer, a motorhome, with parents? Whatever it is, rent needs to be either at zero, or as close to zero as possible.
So, the only way we could see this happening was to live in an RV.
Life Changing Decisions
In October of 2015 I randomly looked on Craigslist and found a motorhome for sale. I had some money saved up (mainly from selling the crap we owned) and was able to buy this motorohome. By the start of November, my wife and I were living in the driveway of our $1100 rental property (plus utilities) and now paying $375 including utilities. We now had the opportunity to save $825 a month, which would soon begin to accumulate and set us on the right path towards land ownership.
Our location hadn’t changed, just the luxury factor and the space.
The plan was to keep working and earn maximum dollars to start saving for land. As we live in a tourist town, work always takes a downturn in the winter months and as such we were unable to continue our proposed workload. This meant we were could only afford to cover costs, yet not save.
After a month of living in the RV we realised that the space was not gonna cut it, but we’d made the commitment. We’d downsized all our belongings to the bare minimum and we had chosen our path towards a more sustainable way of living. There was no way we wanted to go back to paying high rental prices.
This is where the idea of building a tiny home came up. We could continue to pay low rent, yet live a lot more comfortably than in an RV.
Dreams Become Reality
The more we researched, the closer the project came to realisation.
All parts of the project seemed to slot into place one by one.
- We found new landlords with space to build and moved our RV.
- I began learning about construction.
- I read and read and read about tiny house living.
- Our parents matched our savings, which was the most incredible gift and was the kickstart to the project.
- I began doodling and sketching out floor plans.
It was half dreaming and half reality. It seemed as if we were litterally dreaming our reality into being.
After three months of living in a motorhome, I ordered the tiny house trailer.
Then, we ordered a composting toilet.
Then, I bought a truck to haul materials.
Then, I learned how to use SketchUp and drew our home (sans trailer)
That picture is my first attempt after only three hours of using Sketchup, not bad.
If you’re going to build a tiny home, then I recommend learning it, simply watch the tutorial videos and you’re on your way!
Day by Day
At the time I write this (February 24th 2016), there is a long way to go, there is so much I don’t know and lots more to learn. I’ve started to realise that we can’t possibly know everything about building a tiny home until we’ve actually started building it. So aside from hours of research, I understand that I need to also learn from doing and not stress out too much about what I don’t know, yet revel in the excitement of what I am going to achieve.
It’s happening regardless, so here goes nothing…