Furry Friends and Tiny Houses

Are they a good idea?

by m.j. boyle

According to the Humane Society, 62% of all US households have at least one pet and in 2012 more than $50 billion dollars (yes, with a “B”) was spent on their care.

Do you have a dog? Then you have a lot in common with the 47% of the population who own one.

Prefer a more mild-mannered companion? The number of cat owners reflects, rather amusingly, that we are as likely to own a cat as a dog; since 46% of us do.

If you’re thinking of downsizing, and moving into a tiny house you probably have a pet. And given that 82% of you also have children, this makes the decision just that much more complicated. Where will they all sleep? Eat? “Go”? We worry about all the little details of their lives. It’s no wonder why so many of us refer to our pets as “our children”.

I am an animal person. I love them all. I have owned and raised horses, cats, dogs, gerbils, hamsters, parakeets, goats, chickens, geese, ducks, rabbits, and even raised pigeons for a time. Given, however, my currently hectic raise-kids-work-build-tiny lifestyle I only have two cats now. One is mine, and one is my daughter’s.

gerbal

A cute little gerbil in a tiny little sweater…

I guess you could say that having animals in my tiny house is a given. I cannot remember a time in my life when I didn’t have at least one, and I sincerely appreciate the “life” they add to a household.

So, where will they all sleep? Eat? “Go”?

Litter Box or Yard? – From the start of my tiny house design, I thought my litter box would hang on the outside of my tiny house (envision a “removable” shed) and accessed via a cat door. But, as the design has morphed, I recently discovered that I have enough space under one section of the stairs to add a litter box there. Easier to clean and access. Yay! And even though my cat loves the outdoors, he won’t “go” out there. So, an indoor litter box it is. Sometimes I think about getting another dog. (my 13 year old Golden Retriever died last year) And while the where-to-go decision is obvious (aka outside) I have to admit that having marmoleum flooring in my tiny house makes the idea of having another dog closer to a reality. Carpets and dogs (and especially puppies) don’t mix. Accidents happen. And, dare I say, wood floors don’t always fare well either. Continue reading

Making A Living With A Tiny House Based Business

One of the top asked questions about living a nomadic lifestyle be it in a THOW, an RV, a travel trailer, or a luxury cruise ship, is how to earn any sort of living in order to explore the world around you and focus less on the corporate stronghold and more on your passions. It seems to be a riddle for which we are all seeking the answer. It is important though to remember that our priority should not be on making money but finding passion in what we are doing. A tiny house based business should expand with us and not limit our freedom to travel, exploration, adventure, connection, etc. But what can be done as a nomad? What kind of business can be operated on wheels, on the open sea, or from a remote outpost with little interaction other than that with nature around us?

THOW based 1There seem to be two categories of businesses when it comes to the THOW based industry. There are those that cater to the THOW and there are those that are based OUT OF the THOW. Examples of the first category might be:

  • Tiny House Sales and Marketing
  • Solar Panel Distribution
  • Solar Power Maintenance
  • Wind Turbine Maintenance
  • Housecleaning
  • Carpet and Upholstery Cleaning
  • Meal Prep and Delivery
  • Computer Tech Services
  • Trailer Tech
  • Brake Specialist
  • Spot Welder
  • Windshied/Window Repair
  • General Handyman
  • Wooden Display Signs
  • Locksmithing
  • Exterior Painting
  • THOW/RV Detailing

Continue reading

Daniel’s Lithuanian House Update

by Daniel Combellick

For those unfamiliar with the project, It was started the summer of 2012. I have 12 acres just 30 minutes north of Vilnius, Lithuania. 2012 saw the completed exterior shell, which I originally planned without the full bath. 2013 I insulated, drywalled, plastered, wired, and installed the woodstove and chimney. Spring of 2014 I decided to make this my permanent residence. therefore, early in 2014 I began the bath/laundry/ rear entry. The bath would have a lavatory, toilet, shower, and clothes washer. This I accomplished in a space of 75 sq. ft. I also added on an oversized airlock for additional storage space.

Another reason behind the change of heart on the bath is I would like to have a place for people to come and stay, and not everyone would be excited by the prospect of too few amenities. During summer months I can move back into the old log house, and this house can be rented out to people who would like to experience this kind of living, this remote location, learn about building if it interests them, or who just wish to get away from – wherever they are- and just about everything else for that matter.

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You can see the beginnings of the formwork on the left for the rear airlock/entry. Continue reading

Tiny House Magazine Issue 27

Tiny House Magazine Issue 27

Last month I had several requests via Instagram to feature tiny house bathrooms. I assigned Andrew Odom to this task and our special feature Tiny Bathrooms Big Ideas shows off some great tiny house bathrooms.

Melissa Tack shares with us her tiny Eight by Eight house that she has designed. This design is based on a home with a foundation with only a sixty-four square footprint.

Tabatha and Noah Mehl are a couple based out of Cincinnati, Ohio. In October 2014, they began renovations on a 53’ semi trailer to turn it into a tiny home.

Have you ever stood in the middle of a wide open space, soaked in the quiet, felt the breeze and dreamed you could just drop a house down right there and live? So has Nathan Venzara shares his story on “Down on the Farm.”

These stories and so much more are included in this issue of the Tiny House Magazine. Enjoy!

Click Here to Get Your Copy

Tiny House Magazine Issue 27