Friday, August 24, 2012

Alternatives to the traditional tiny house methods

Prefab Shed/Tiny House
I think I will be going with SIP panel homes for our first tiny house build for ease of build, and surprisingly, overall cost. I found the one on the left available through Direct Buy for $2500. Of course you have to have a membership to Direct Buy, so hat is not accessible to everyone. One manufacturer who has created a light weight, highly insulated and relatively low cost SIP is SING core panels. You can find them at and are one route I was considering for this first build. First I am working on a cost comparison from start to finish of the build.

So far the cheapest build I've seen is 8,000 for a tiny house that was built using traditional materials, some of them scavenged, reclaimed, recycled, or upcycled and that home is not finished yet. However, alternative build methods seem to be finding even cheaper ways of building a tiny home.

Pallets and Plastic $500 Tiny House
Some people have been working on building an entire tiny home out of pallets. One man and has 2 designs he's working with for that idea that he says would be free to build and can be found on his website but he is currently in a holding pattern. One would be  bit too drafty and not strong enough for my liking, the other has a bit more potential, and of course you could use the dip cloth method of dipping a material such as fishing net material, burlap, or other material that is natural fibers and has holes in it, in a sustainable, light weight cement like mix to put over the pallets, and you'd have a non traditional looking tiny home. This would not work for a tiny home on a trailer, but since the first home we'll be building will be on a cement slab in someone's back yard, I thought we would look at all alternatives.

Straw Bale Tiny House
A slightly modern looking take on the tiny pallet house is found on Lloyd's blog and pictured above: and cost $500 to make, so certainly the cheapest method. The version pictured above seems to be using some sort of plastic to make the place less drafty and more private although I believe the original was built. Unfortunatley Lloyd did not link to the original article.

Another low cost alternative method is straw bale building. Sometimes these are built by an individual, a couple or a whole community. A friend of mine is going to be setting up a trip for a group of us to go help build a sustainable farm some of her friends are working on in exchange for education on their sustainable practices a place to stay while there, and vegan meals. I may need to bring some alternative food sources to keep myself healthy while there due to my allergies, but I think it's worth a shot. I may not be able to contribute as much physically as others due to my disability, but I'm stubborn and persistent when working on projects, and I'm creative and get things done. See my food blog, if you're curious about better healthy through yumness as I like to say. More on that later. If you'd like to try living in a tiny straw bale house, check out this straw bale village:

Well there are more, but that is all the time I have for now. So expect an alternative building methods part two post in the near future as I continue investigating, planning, pricing and generally doing the prep work for our upcoming build. Please post any links to low cost tiny house building methods in the comments section!

1 comment:

  1. hi, i am fullt satisfied by this posting.
    really its a nice sharing.

    thanks a lot.
    traditional homes