How to Build Your Own Tiny Off-grid Cabin Today

The tiny house movement is not just a fad.

It is quickly growing in popularity due to cheaper living costs, less environmental impact, and a simpler lifestyle.

A large proportion of tiny homes owners don’t want to be grid-tied and so off-grid tiny homes are also growing in popularity.

There are so many different options when it comes to living in a tiny home, from buying an old horse box to convert, to building your own log cabin.

Today, we’re going to take a look at the process of building a tiny off-grid log cabin.

There are 5 vital steps in the process of building any home. They are:

  1. Planning and Designing
  2. Foundations
  3. Raising the Walls
  4. Floor and Roof
  5. Installing Windows and Doors

Planning and Designing

There are loads of log cabin floor plans available online. You might be lucky enough to come across one that suits your needs.

If not though, you’ll need to spend time planning and designing the perfect tiny home for you.

The most important design consideration for tiny homes is making sure everything has a multi-purpose use.

For example, your sofa area may pull out into a bed, and your side cupboards might pull out into a dining table.

Getting your design right in the beginning stages is crucial.

If you start altering your plans mid-way through the build, it’s likely to add big costs to your project.


Even tiny homes need foundations.

They might not need to be as substantial as a regular brick and mortar house, but you still need them.

Most tiny homes only need shallow foundations such as raft, strip or pad foundations.

The one you choose will depend on your sites soil and rock type as well as your budget.

All of the above foundation’s types are relatively easy to do, even for the novice builder.

Raising the Walls

During your planning process you should have chosen what types of logs you’ll use for your build.
Typically for Tiny cabins, this is a soft wood; spruce or pine.

To start your tiny home log cabin, you’ll need to create your base with four ‘sill’ logs.
These will be your four best, straight and longest logs.

The simplest method, which doesn’t require any expertise or cutting of the logs, is the Butt and Pass method.

This method requires a lot of brute strength, as you’ll just drive large pieces of rebar through the logs to pin them together stacking them onto each other.

Floor and Roof

To install your floor, you’ll need to insert floor joists into the bottom sill logs.

You should space these evenly, and you can then lay planks of wood on top to create your floor.

Roofing your log cabin is actually a lot simpler than it looks.

You’ll need to build up two gables (triangular shaped) walls, and lay two purlin logs (mid-way up the gable wall on either side) and one ridge log (at the very top of the wall), to connect the two gable walls.

You’ll then need to install roof joists in the same manner in which you laid your floor joists.

Lastly, you can lay your finishing roof material; wood shingles, roofing felt, metal sheeting etc.

Remember to lay insulation in the floor and the roof; these are the largest areas in which you’re likely to lose heat.

Installing Windows and Doors

To install your doors and windows, you’ll need to remove the lumber.

To do this you can use a chainsaw, and support the opening with a lintel log and tacking cleats.

Then install the frames of your windows and doors, and then the windows and doors themselves.

You may choose to do this step as you are raising your walls.

The easiest way to do this is to make the cut when you reach the height of the top of the window.


If you’ve been dreaming of living a more minimalistic lifestyle, and getting off the grid, it is entirely possible to do.

Thousands of people are making this move every year, and the tiny house community is only going to grow.

Stop waiting and go do it!

2 thoughts on “How to Build Your Own Tiny Off-grid Cabin Today”

  1. We are interested in finding a Tiny Home for sale on a small 1/2 to 1 acre lot in perhaps Lancaster county, PA. We would like to have Solar panels for heat and a small stove for heat. No sure about what to do for water and Waste at this time. Interested in keeping price down as we are both retired. Any ideas you may have will be appreciated.

    Thank you,


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