What do you picture when someone mentions the words ‘tiny home’? Do you think of small, cramped quarters? Minimal living space? A barely functional bathroom and kitchen? If we talked about tiny homes 20 or even 10 years ago – that might be the case. But this day in age? Things have changed quite a bit.
With housing costs across the nation at record-levels, the younger generations are finding it more and more difficult to become first-time homebuyers. That’s why many of them are taking matters into their own hands and going a different route entirely.
Tyler, an engineering grad, decided to build his own tiny home. Using reclaimed materials and a bit of clever thinking and ingenuity – he did it with just $15,000.
Tyler purchased a 20-foot long trailer to start and base his build – this was one of the biggest expenses in his entire budget. The metal trailer is lightweight, insulated with foam insulation, and has a total square footage of around 140-square feet. But you’d never know it once you step inside.
Walking into the tiny home, you are greeted by the straightforward layout.
The entire home consists of a sitting area at the far end and an hand-cranked elevator that is stored above it. The center of the home contains a workspace and functional kitchen, then on the far end of the home is the bathroom (not pictured here, more below).
Getting a closer look at the kitchen, you can see Tyler has everything he could ever need.
Tyler made sure to provide himself with plenty of counter space for prepping and cooking meals, along with a natural would ‘desk’ for computer work or miscellaneous tasks. The kitchen has an induction stove top, double sink, and lots of storage.
Tyler combined the sitting and sleeping areas, saving a sizable amount of space by utilizing one small area.
The engineering grad has a comfortable and decent-sized sectional sofa under the very unique sleeping area. When Tyler wants to sit and relax on the sofa, all he needs to do is use the hand crank to lift the bed toward the ceiling – this provides him with plenty of headroom. When it’s time for bed? Just crank it back down and hop right in!
The concept of using something as simple as a hand crank is absolutely genius when it comes to taking advantage of vertical space in small homes. Imagine all of the possibilities!
Of course, Tyler needed to figure out a way to have a functional bathroom in his mobile, tiny home.
Opposite the sleeping and sitting area, you’ll find the clever bathroom at the other end of the home. The bathroom is simple but has all of the basics: vanity sink, shower, and composting toilet.
The platform the trailer sits on has an 88-gallon water tank and a pump to provide satisfying water pressure. What more do you really need a bathroom?
Not pictured, but explained in the video below, is the home’s super clever and impressive heated ceiling.
The heated ceiling circulates hot water through a series of piping underneath the cladding of the ceiling. Most people choose to heat floors, so why the ceiling? Tyler explains that he chose the ceiling because the ceiling is more open. Since there’s such little floorspace, it wouldn’t be long until his feet were sweating! Ten inches of insulation help keep the heat inside.
So, why did he choose to live like this and how did he do it?
“Financially, it makes sense for me. I was paying $1,000 to rent a basement apartment that didn’t have much natural light. So I wanted to be in a space that was more financially accessible, but also where I wouldn’t be shrouded in darkness all the time”, he explains.
I found an RV park that’s close to where I work and that’s open year-round, and allows me to have a short commute. My monthly costs are now lower, so I get to save more money, and I get to put more money too towards my social experiences. Environmentally, it forces me to think about how much water and electricity I’m using, and my impact on the space around me.”
Tyler has learned so many life lessons in the process of making his dream a reality and he hopes to share those with others in the video below. Living small doesn’t mean you have to give up on luxuries – Tyler’s 140-square-foot home is proof of that.
Take a full tour of Tyler’s home in the video below – get inspired to build a sanctuary of your own!
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