Choosing to live in a tiny house wasn’t an easy decision. We looked at so many options to get us out on our property without creating a bunch of debt. Well, truthfully, we did get really excited about moving out here and went to a mobile home place. We looked at getting a $180,000 loan on a double wide. I’m so grateful we decided against that!
When we left Colorado we had some ideas about what we wanted out of life. My husband wanted out of the city but I wasn’t so sure about that. We both knew we wanted to lower our bills with the hopes of bringing him home full time. We were able to find a great 10 acre lot of land about an hour out of Oklahoma City. It already had a driveway and house site. The most important part was that it was within our budget. Of course I couldn’t imagine living so far away from….everything!
So the researching began! There were so many ways we could build a house but the problem was everything was out of our price range. Just to do a well, electric and septic we were looking at $10,000-$20,000 and that was more than we were expecting. Once we realized this, we had some big decisions to make. We were learning that a concrete pad for a house, even a small house, was going to be about $10,000, then we’d be spending much, much more to finish the house before move in.
We found the tiny house documentary on Netflix and watched it. This got us thinking. We started drawing up plans and figuring out how small we could actually go. Of course my husband did most of the research. He started searching Craigslist for free RV trailers or mobile homes. The plan was if we could find one for free we could build on top of it however we wanted. Our goal was to spend around $5,000 for the whole thing and that was a tight budget. If you’ve watched any tiny house shows on TV, you know you can spend much more with smaller square footage.
We were lucky to find a 40 foot RV that was completely trashed. We went to look at it and knew this was our chance. We lucked out when one of the neighbors offered to tear it apart so they could recycle it. We definitely got the better end of that deal! When we went to pick it up there was trash everywhere and I couldn’t imagine if we had to do all that work.
At this point the trailer sat for several more months. We were waiting to save up a good chunk of money to get started. It also happened to be the busy season at work as he was still in construction. During this time we just kept reading and designing how we wanted to house to look. I was a pinterest nut during this time and I had big dreams that didn’t fit our $5,000 budget but it was fun.
If we were able to build this house the way we dreamed it would have tripled our budget, been gorgeous and solved many of the struggles we’ve had living here. But it would have also been impossible to be done when we needed it. Paying for everything in cash made us rein in our expectations for our tiny house. We found practical ways to make our move in deadline and budget work together. The sacrifices we made to live here aren’t ones that everyone would be able to do but we have made it work. Priorities you know. It’s been almost 2 years and we are still working on it while living in it.
Don’t forget to pin this post and come back and look for more of our tiny house stories.