The biggest question we’ve gotten from most people after we tell them our plans of building a tiny house is: WHY?! This post is going to explain where we’re coming from, and the reasons why we’re choosing this path. I won’t go too much into detail about the savings in money, energy, and stress that really make the sell for going Tiny- this will be the topic for another post.
It started out probably the same way it did for most people- a friend had shared a post on facebook about a tiny house (in fact, Tim had also shared it around the same time), which was the first time i’d ever heard of the concept. Here’s the page: http://news.distractify.com/people/itty-bitty-house/?v=1. The featured image at the top of this post is of the tiny house showcased in this article, which was built (and is now lived in) by Andrew and Gabriella Morrison. The reason the Morrissons’ tiny house caught my eye was more so because of its efficient use of space and capability of having a small ecological footprint. It never occurred to me that it might actually be something that I could do.
Then a few months later, in September 2014, Tim and I were on the plane heading to Dublin, Ireland for a two week trip when, by total chance, the man sitting next to me was a tiny house owner from Nova Scotia! He explained that he had a carpentry background and his life situation had changed such that he realized his needs could be completely met by what a tiny house has to offer. So he got a trailer, built the house, and moved in. Simple as that. Now he’s happy as can be with very small bills and the ability to up and leave whenever he wants. This was a huge step for us in realizing how doable it actually is in our part of the world, and that having our own tiny house is a realistic dream.
I could have SWORN I wrote down his name and contact so that we could get in touch once home again, and could hear more of his story and his perspective on tiny houses, but somehow I can’t seem to find it anywhere. Hopefully one day we’ll run into him again and be able to tell him how grateful we are for instilling the confidence we needed to seriously think about getting a project like this off the ground.
Even after all this, we still weren’t close to making any kind of commitment to building our own Tiny house. It required the connection to real necessity for us to open our eyes and actually make a move in the right direction. We have been thinking for a while now that we’d like to take some time to do a bit of longer term travelling before we have any real responsibilities in our world. And with Tim finishing his journeyman block (welding) just before Christmas, the opportunity would present itself in 2015 to get going. Trying to think ahead, we wanted to sort out what we would do for storage, since we’re way too attached to some of our possessions to just sell everything (I know, I know, I’m working on it). We knew that paying for a storage unit would be out of the question- if there’s one thing I’m tired of is paying money into a black hole with nothing to show for it at the end. Tim suggested that we could build an enclosed trailer, which would be costly upfront but we’d at least have something we owned when it was all said and done and could sell it later if we wanted.
At some point in the days following this decision, the thought popped into Tim’s head: If we can build an enclosed trailer, why don’t we just build a tiny house?! And so it began.
Once we’d finally added 2 and 2 together, we tore into this idea like wolves, hungry for information on trailer dimension regulations, floor plans, framing options, insulation R-values, roof and truss designs, and pretty much everything that you need in order to build a smart, efficient, tiny house. I’ll go into much more detail on these topics and more as time goes on. But for now, hopefully you have a better idea of where we’re coming from, and perhaps it doesn’t sound as crazy as it did before you read this.