A few days after my last post I received a few email responses from building companies we had been speaking with. They each confirmed a few important facts that Jared and I had been concerned about. The first was that we would probably need to increase our budget….
A lot of what we have read and researched has been from those who constructed their own tiny homes and were just paying for materials. But in our research Jared and I agreed that with a structure that is both permit and mobile, neither of us have the construction experience or expertise to build something sound enough for that purpose. We need someone who knows what they are doing; we need someone with tiny house building experience. We would love to be a part of the building process, but a tiny house builder needs to be in charge and that means our budget needs to increase by about 60%.
TinyHouseTalk actually wrote a really useful post last year on the cost of building a tiny house, but they sadly they only mentioned people who buy tiny houses ready made in the very last sentence and the variation in cost was $27,000 to $68,000, which needless to say is a very big swing.
The second fact was that we need to readjust our drawing and structural plans. Mobility is important for us. We always knew that was a priority, but thought that being wider than “road legal” was just an inconvenience. The idea was to build an 11 foot wide structure that we needed a wide load permit for and could either obtain that permit ourselves to move the house or easily hire a company to move it for us. But as it turns our we would need a specialized license to move it the structure ourselves and moving it with a company is very very expensive. In fact to move the structure from Texas to the east or west coast would cost about 10-20% of the cost of the actual house (upwards of $6,000)!
So we have decided to downsize even more to approximately 300 square feet and came up with a new sketch.
Although the thought of a home that was only 8 feet wide initially made me feel claustrophobic, since we have already started the downsizing process I think I am much more comfortable about the idea; I might even say that I am excited with the decision. It will be cozy, functional, mobile- exactly what we want.
In other news, I found an additional tiny home builder we have been speaking with that shows tremendous potential as “the one.” Greg Parham is the founder of Rocky Mountain Tiny Houses. I found his site after watching this tour of an 8’x30′ custom tiny home he designed and built for a family of 3:
I spoke with Greg on Tuesday and sent him our sketch today. I love that he is open to creativity and customization and when I asked him about the possibility of Jared and I heading up to Colorado to help build, he was definitely on board. He also asked me to create a Pinterest board specifically with our tiny house “must haves.” If you follow me on Pinterest you know my “home” board is chock full of tiny house ideas, but now you can see the plan develop on my “Our Tiny House Plans” board.