by Ella Jenkins
It’s been a year now since I moved to the bay area and thought you might consider running an update now that I’ve been living tiny for a year. It’s tiny for two as of 10 months ago!
Everything is still going beautifully. It’s amazing how big a tiny house can feel when you’ve built it around what’s important to you. It’s truly just like the average house, but smaller and exactly the way you want! I actually felt I could have gone with a shorter trailer when I first moved in, but now with my boyfriend living here too it’s perfect.
We met 3 days after I moved to the Bay area, and he thinks tiny houses are just as wonderful as I do. It probably helps that he doesn’t have a lot of stuff either!
I rent space on a small ranch and get to see a little sliver of the ocean out my window every day. I work for Tumbleweed teaching workshops on everything to do with tiny building and living and I work an average of 5.4 days a month. And that’s it
I get to be music-y and beach-y and arts-y and as creative as I’d like in my extra time because you just don’t need very much when you don’t have to take care of very much. Basically, I love my house, and I love how simple it has allowed my life to be.
I have covered this Tumbleweed Epu before. Built by the Healdsburg High School’s CASA (Construction and Sustainability Academy) and led by instructor Glen Schaezlein. I got to tour it again last Sunday at an open house located at the Healdsburg Community Church. You can read the previous post by clicking here.
This tiny house will be for sale later this summer by sealed bid auction.
The minimum bid is $37,000 and bids will be accepted later this summer. Comparable models of this tiny house sell for up to $46,000 and are not as well-equipped as this remarkable student project. More details about the silent auction will be available soon.
Email: healdsburgshop (at) gmail.com for more information on how to bid on the tiny house.
The tiny house is an “Epu” model, built from plans donated by the Tumbleweed Tiny House Company and paid for by community donations. The tiny house is an 89-square-feet, fully self-contained dwelling, complete with a sleeping loft, a kitchen with (tiny) commercial quality appliances and a stainless steel shower. It is finished in wood paneling with redwood shelving. The tiny house boasts a state-of-the-art LED lighting system, a tiny porch and a unique handmade steel porthole window in the loft bedroom.
Tumbleweed Tiny House Company recently added trailers to their lineup making it easier for you to build your own tiny house.
Designed specifically for tiny houses on wheels they are available in sizes of 14 ft, 18 ft and 20 ft. offering Full Porch, Corner Porch, or No Porch, these trailers create a perfect foundation for your home.
The trailers are constructed in the US, the quality-built trailers come standard with brakes, lights, underside flashing and radial tires. They say the tires are a significant upgrade from tires normally found on utility trailers. Radial tires differ radically from traditional bias-ply tires in their construction, minimizing tread wear and improving flexibility for better handling especially with heavier loads. The average steel-belted radial gets about 100,000 miles of wear, while the bias-ply tires generally only get about 30,000 miles.
When it comes to attaching your house to the trailer the techniques have improved greatly. Tumbleweed has taken advantage of the latest technology and added threaded galvanized rods which serve as anchor bolts for you to attach your framing to. Heavy-duty, they are made to withstand major wind-drafting when driving on the open road.
Additionally, the trailer is designed to allow an increase of 3.5 inches of headroom in the house interior, something you cannot achieve on any other regular trailer.
You can get all the details at the Tumbleweed site by clicking here. Pricing ranges from $3,800 to $4,400 depending on which trailer and design you choose.
I see a lot of “new build” stories lately, and I wanted to share our small house with your readers, since we took a different path.
Our municipality has a minimum size requirement for new houses. At 44 square metres (roughly 475 square feet) it is not too bad compared to some places, but it still scuttled our plans to buy a lot and build a Tumbleweed New Vesica (289 square feet) on it. Homes on trailers and RVs are also specifically mentioned in the Property Standards and not allowed. Instead we bought a two-story 1907 farmhouse in the cute “Ontario cottage” style that is prevalent on the Island.
However, this old house has some important benefits that we’ve found. It’s two stories, but the upstairs is closed off with a door at the foot of the stairs, which we keep closed. There is a bedroom on the main floor which we also keep closed off and don’t use, meaning that we’re living in just 325 square feet after all! The main room is 14′ by 14′, and contains our bed/couch, the woodstove, table and dining chairs, a comfy chair, and a wardrobe for storage. The kitchen is bigger than I need at 9′ x 9′, but does provide lots of extra storage. We do go upstairs to use the existing bathroom, which is 6′ x 8′. Continue Reading »