Michael and I knew that we wanted something smaller, but even more so, we knew that we wanted our own land. Michael was raised on cattle ranches down in Alabama and Mississippi. He has many head of cattle that he wants to bring up to where we currently live. We always talked about buying a place or building a place, but neither of us are machine inclined. So we knew that we were going to hire someone that could build our tiny cabin for us.
We bought a historic hundred and four-year-old cottage in the antique district also known as Goodlettsville about 20 minutes away from downtown Nashville three years ago. Previously we were in a one bedroom apartment so when we bought this cottage we felt like it was so much bigger being that it has three bedrooms. After living in it for a while we realize that three bedrooms were not necessary for us we actually use the master bedroom as a den and media room and we sleep in a smaller bedroom and then of course the third bedroom has been used as a guestroom and catchall.
Mike and I have always talked about gardening cattle and having acreage someday. I came across Tiny House websites and blogs about a year ago online. Even though we knew we wanted to downsize Mike wasn’t too keen on the small tiny houses that were 6 x 6 on trailers from the get-go. However through the past year we’ve done a lot of research and decided on the size that could work for us.
Mike and I garden extensively. The whole backyard is a working garden. We grow our own food and we know how to preserve. We also have kept hens for years. We had the Mennonites in Dickson Tennessee build us a rather nice-looking coop, and we exchange our vegetables and eggs with the neighbors in our community. What we can’t eat, freeze, or can we give to family, friends, and Church folk.
We found a company up the road in Greenbrier Tennessee at the Amish general store that builds sheds and small cabins. The company is actually just over the state line in Kentucky. Their quality of work and customization options were second to none. As soon as I spotted what they call a “vinyl Quaker cabin,” I immediately talked to Mike and said I think I found the cabin we’ve been looking for! It is 288 sq ft, not including the sleeping loft. At 12 x 24 it was very easy to have it delivered.
Depending on their order load, your cabin will be delivered within 4 to 6 weeks. Ours took about five weeks, because we had fully customized it. We have windows in the sleeping loft, double glass doors on the back that could lead out to a deck, and extra height added.
Our goal is to be off grid as much as we can be. We are choosing no electricity, plumbing, etc. We will use wind, solar, rain water, propane, kerosene, composting toilet, and wood. Keep more hens and grow our own food.
We are excited about our journey and we know that this is the right fit for us, it may not be for everyone, but Mike and I knew that this was coming, even before it was in front of us.
We are excited to insulate the tiny cabin, put up some sort of wall materials such as bead board, and we received leftover hardwood flooring from some friends.
Our plan: within the next 12 to 18 months to be fully off the grid on our own homestead, growing our own food, and looking for alternative fuel options.
Our next venture is finding a good used tractor!
Shon & Mike
I’m always on the lookout for pre-fabricated structures that can potentially become tiny houses, and the Amish Meadow Lark company in Pennsylvania caught my eye for their simple, but beautiful construction of various sheds, two of which could be the start of a tiny house.
Currently, Meadow Lark has five different models of portable buildings to choose from: Mini Barns, Cottages, Quaker Sheds, Hi-Wall Barns and Garages. The Cottages and Quaker Sheds can be ordered in over 15 different sizes. The Cottages cost from $1,120 to $1,480 for an 8×8 foot structure to $4,195 to $5,120 for a 12×32 foot structure. The Quaker Sheds range in cost from $1,285 to $1,610 for an 8×8 foot structure to $4,760 to $5,770 for a 12×32 foot structure. Continue Reading »
I featured Jon Giswold’s cabin back in 2010 and he recently sent me some pictures of how his cabin looks today and I thought that you might enjoy seeing them.
Jon’s cabin is built by an Amish company called Cabins to Go and he had this 12 x 20 cabin constructed for around $18,000. You can view the previous post Jon’s Cabin in Wisconsin to learn more about it and see interior photos.
Thanks Jon for the update.
Jon Giswold sent me some pictures of his cabin being built by an Amish company called Cabins To Go in Wisconsin. Jeff Cline the owner of the company just contacted me and said the base price for the 12 x 20 cabin is $18,000. Jon added electrical, plumbing and furnishings which are not included in that quote. I will let Jon tell you more about its final destination.
My cabin was built by a modest Amish community in north central Wisconsin. I had it delivered June 2010 and it is finished as of Oct 1, 2010. I had septic installed and a well dug and all that goes with that. Electric had to be established and phone service.
This was a completely undeveloped piece of land on the lake I was raised.
Now I have my own version of my childhood dream. What I learned in this process is that if you want something bad enough, you will make it happen. I have this now for my future and for my soul.
The cabin is 12X20, the porch adds another 8′ to the front which I screened in, and the loft is about a third of the footprint. I am in love with it. Continue Reading »