My interest in all-things-tiny-and-old started at 12 years old when I became fascinated with a tiny abandoned farm house near my parent’s home...and I've been sketching floor plans ever since. My Tiny Houses are the culmination of a life spent dreaming of a tiny reclaimed space, all my own.
When I decided that I was going to build a tiny house,
there was no question in my mind that I would design my own.I never considered buying an existing one,
and personalizing it, or purchasing an existing plan.I suppose this is because I have experience
managing construction projects and I am a very creative and innovative
person.(And even a patented
inventor!Yay me!)I knew what it would take, up front, to make
it happen and how to find materials and the people to help.
With that said, my build has already had its fair share
of complications because I designed it myself.(There was simply no way for me to know that ending the loft over the wheel
fender would require a monster sized header.)And, the good news is, it doesn’t have to be complicated for you.There are some very good reasons to purchase
plans from an already established builder.
Wall #4 goes up!
Someone has already blazed the trail for you - Someone else has already worked out the kinks
in the design and found a trailer that would support the design.If you’re
not “into” problem solving on a minute-by-minute basis, you might not want to
consider designing your own.Believe me
when I tell you that building a house, even a tiny one, is an exhausting process.Even if you’re not doing the work, the buck
stops with you!Relying on someone else’s
design gives you some peace of mind that what you’re doing has already been
done, and has been proven to work.
The material list is already done - More than once, suppliers / sponsors have
asked me for a list of my materials I would need.For the most part, I have “winged it” and
more than once I have ended up with the wrong materials or not enough
materials.I got a door that was framed
for 2x6 and my house is framed with 2x4’s.I forgot the headers, completely, and had to run around town finding
them.(they’re not a stock item for
lumber yards or big box stores)I was
short a full case of construction adhesive and my framer had to go get it.(Oops?)When you pay someone for their design, your tiny house plan already comes
with the complete material list and your trips to the hardware store will be drastically
Bracing for the rafters.
Practice makes perfect - As you well know, the more you do something,
the easier it gets.Utilizing an
existing design is like leveraging someone else’s learning curve.They already figured out where to put the king
studs, how high the windows should be (a subject which caused a lot of grief
for me) how many electrical outlets you need, and how to minimize weight during
the build. If you’re not doing the work
yourself, every one of your contractors will thank you for making their job
In a nutshell; If your idea of personalizing a space involved
paint, fabric, finishes, and fixtures; buy a tiny house plan.If you’re not prepared to field questions,
solve problems, run around town at a moment’s notice, quell tempers, and
resolve conflicts; buy a tiny house plan.