Tiny House in a Landscape

by Kent Griswold on March 1st, 2013. 6 Comments

Aaron Castle sent this unusual Tiny House in a Landscape. Aaron says, “I thought you might like this picture of our tiny house project, with business as usual “people-barns” being built in the background.

The owner of Whole House Building Supply let us build our house there for free as a demonstration item for salvage and re-use.”

Photo Credit: Candace Anderson www.canander.com

tiny house in a landscape

Teardrop Trailer Kits

by Christina Nellemann on January 14th, 2013. 15 Comments

I recently featured a teardrop trailer builder in Eugene, Oregon on the Tiny Yellow Teardrop blog and was pleased to find out that the family-run Oregon Trail’R company is one of very few companies to offer teardrop trailer kits. These types of kits can be perfect for people who are interested in building or owning a teardrop trailer, but don’t possess the skills, time or tools to build one completely from scratch.


Jon and his brother Sawyer of Oregon Trail’R create and supply a solid foundation for their FronTear style trailer. This includes precut walls, a floor, doors, bulkheads, partitions and spars. The buyer can do all the assembly themselves or Oregon Trail’R will begin the build and the buyer can finish it themselves. The buyer supplies the frame and chassis, galley and interior cabinetry, lighting and any other finishing details. Oregon Trail’R can also supply a custom frame designed for a 5×8 foot trailer for $1,300. Continue Reading »

January 14th, 2013and filed in Travel Trailers
Tags: build, builder, design, kit, project, small, teardrop, tiny, trailer

Small Home. Big Life

by Kent Griswold on February 7th, 2012. 20 Comments

By Ben Hurst

Hello, my name is Ben, a 31 year old music teacher. I live in Southeast Louisiana and in the past four years I have been on a journey to create an easier life for myself. From growing a garden, raising chickens, ducks, and rabbits, to aquaponics. I just wanted to find a better, easier, healthier way to live.

I have just started my tiny house project with my dad. We began welding the frame for the trailer and acquired the axles. It is going to be a long project, but the end result will be so amazing I just can’t wait. I have been researching extensively every single tiny house resource I can get my hands on and have almost narrowed down what the final design is going to look like.

Most people that are building tiny houses struggle with a place to put it, but I will have a spot to put mine and enough space to have my small farm. So one day I can live in my small home, on my small farm, living a very big, enjoyable, sustainable life!

You can follow Ben’s build at his blog http://smallhomebiglife.blogspot.com/

February 7th, 2012and filed in Your Story
Tags: farm, frame, home, project, small, sustainable, tiny houses, trailer

Bringing a Surveyor On-Board Your Tiny House Project

by Kent Griswold on January 30th, 2012. 21 Comments

Guest post by David from David Moor Chartered Surveyors

(This information is for the UK not the United States)

Getting a surveyor on-board for your tiny house project can seem like a relatively daunting step. It can be the moment where your tiny house makes its first real steps into becoming a reality. That said, it can also bump up the expense of the project, so it is not a decision that will be taken lightly by those with grandeur objectives for their tiny home.

It should go without saying that it won’t be necessary to bring the technical expertise of surveyors into smaller micro-house projects. There are circumstances, however, where you will bring in the expertise of builders, architects, and indeed, surveyors.

With this in mind we’ll look at the value a surveyor will bring to your project and the circumstances that would predicate this decision.

This article will provide an overview of the role a surveyor plays in the construction of buildings and look at why they may add value to your projects.

There are three factors that will determine whether you will consider using a surveyor:

  • The size and complexity of your project
  • The budget for the project
  • Your prior experience building

Of these three factors, the size and complexity of the project is ultimately the most important. (These however, are often defined by the project’s budget.)

In any new building project, the design is likely to chop and change as the structure begins to take shape. Let’s have a look the responsibilities of a surveyor in a construction project.

Cost Management
The role of a surveyor from your point of view boils down to two words: cost management. On smaller projects, this task can straight forward to manage yourself, but with any job of a significant cost, it’s not recommended you go it alone.


At the start of any project, you’ll have an approximate idea as to what it is going to cost. There are always (always) unforeseen changes to the project that can cause its costs to escalate.

Whilst this deviation may not be a major problem in small projects, in larger ones they can add up and jeopardize the projects chance of completion.

An architect may have an idea about cost, but they are not qualified to account for the management of building costs as they change over time. The surveyor’s cost management role continues throughout the project,
particularly in accounting for the value of a builder’s work on a month-by-month (or week-by-week) basis.

This isn’t to imply your builders will pull the wool over your eyes, it’s simply a means of giving you confidence that the project is being completed on-time, on-cost, and to sufficient quality.

For example…
As the home begins to take shape, you decide to make a change to the home’s design; for the sake of argument, adding a window, which the builder quotes at $3,000.

A surveyor will audit this quote to ensure the cost is right. You may be adding a window, but you’ll be losing cladding, so money could be saved here.

Your surveyor will be involved in material procurement as well as the negotiation of the builder’s contract, ensuring a fair price as well as the completion of the work to a high standard.

By employing the services of a surveyor for help with the construction of your tiny home, you will introduce a series of checks and balances to the project, helping to fix the cost.

Anyway, that’s my overview of the value a surveyor could bring to your tiny house build. If you’ve any questions, leave them as a comment and I’ll do my best to try answer them.