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Family’s 200 Sq. Ft. Travel Trailer Tiny House

This is one family’s 200 sq. ft. travel trailer tiny house conversion story.

We’re James + Sarah, two passion-seeking nomads who are genuinely inspired by the world around us. We’re living full-time in a 2005 Jayco Jayflight with our baby daughter, Stella and dog, Lavender.

Our beloved self-made home named NOLA,  whom we renovated out of a FEMA trailer, was originally purposed for citizens of New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina. She found her way to us and we spent the summer of 2015 completely renovating her interior.

Family’s 200 Sq. Ft. Travel Trailer Tiny House

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We both had “career” jobs with big degrees and loans to go with them. We were constantly living beyond our means and we could never get on top financially or be happy with what we were doing. We both decided that our daughter being born would be a fresh start to our lives. We gave up the big house, the big jobs and decided to take a year to hit the restart button before venturing out to create our own business and travel.

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The caravan was stripped down to the studs, got fresh electrical and plumbing, a patched roof, walls, floors and a new ceiling. The wood used on the interior is a combination of pine and cedar, both found and purchased. All previous indications of it being a trailer were removed on the inside as we reworked the floor plan to make it more open and functional for us. We wanted to create a large feeling space that was still cozy and inviting.

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The kitchen includes DIY cedar counter tops, upgraded wood cabinets and knobs, and a faucet made from brass plumbing pieces.

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The bathroom features an up-cycled garage sale found end-table turned vanity, a new camper toilet, a custom built shower and cedar shelving.

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The bed area cleverly uses a book shelf partition to keep the space flowing, while creating separation. A macrame hanging crib gives us versatility with a growing child, and the bed houses 75% of the storage space in the trailer with cubby holes and an under bed storage space accessed from the outside of the trailer.

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We currently are nestled in a grove of pine trees on a temporary commercial property in upstate New York. We have full hookups that provide us with fresh water and power as well as WiFi.

Video: Family’s Renovated Travel Trailer Tiny Home

This lifestyle was born from a desire to live more wild; free from the lives we once created for ourselves, we’re telling stories from our unconventional dwelling and from the road. Please join us along for our journey! Re-share, find us on YouTube  and Instagram as well as our blog!

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Alex is a contributor and editor for TinyHouseTalk.com and the always free Tiny House Newsletter. He has a passion for exploring and sharing tiny homes (from yurts and RVs to tiny cabins and cottages) and inspiring simple living stories. We invite you to send in your story and tiny home photos too so we can re-share and inspire others towards a simple life too. Thank you!

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{ 11 comments… add one }
  • David Remus July 1, 2016, 12:24 pm

    Sweet job of repurposing a trailer! I like the open partition, and an open floor plan.

    Best of luck to you!

  • Carol Perry July 2, 2016, 2:35 am

    Thank you for inviting us into your lovely home. You have done a incredible job renovating your trailer. When you walk inside it looks just like a regular home. You would never know it once was a trailer from the inside. Your home is very cozy and inviting and you seem to have a place for everything!! I love your decorating style!! Stella’s crib looks very comfortable!! Sarah & James I just love the video you created!! Your daughter Stella is adorable and your dog Lavender is cute!! Enjoy your beautiful home and lovely family!! Carol🌻🌺🌹

  • Sarah July 3, 2016, 11:07 pm

    That’s so very kind of you! Thank you for your lovely words, Carol!

  • AmyCat =^.^= July 5, 2016, 10:12 pm

    I’d be curious to see how well this rig TRAVELS. Every photo showed unsecured items on narrow shelves and similar things which WILL fall and break when this “mobile” home tries to actually MOVE… :-(

    • Sarah July 6, 2016, 7:52 am

      Hi Amy,

      We are not in transport full-time. Obviously, when the home gets moved items that are out for “display” get tucked away and secured. I think you’ll find with most converted trailers or tiny homes, unless people live bare bones, there is a certain level of packing and tucking away that happens before towing. Our intention is to leave this on the East Coast so we have a home where our family is, and to not travel in it full-time. It was a minimalistic, money saving option to help us recover from debt and to live more simply.


  • tanya hohe July 7, 2016, 7:18 pm

    AMAZING!!! You 2 are soooo cute!!! Beautiful family! You can tell you are soooo happy!! Love everything about your home. The exterior is loud and proud!! Front door is perfect color. Interior is perfect. Love love love the faucets!! Enjoy your tiny lives together!!

  • Doreen September 2, 2016, 2:25 pm

    What an absolutely fantastic remodel. Charming and homey. I love it!!!!

  • Sharee September 2, 2016, 4:08 pm

    This is not just a mobile house; it is a home. Nicely done.

  • Gabriella September 2, 2016, 4:18 pm

    Extreme simplicity and extreme pority. Authentic happiness.

  • ZACHARY E MOHRMANN September 2, 2016, 8:37 pm

    The government sold 100’s if not thousands of these trailers for just pennies on the dollar after the hurricanes blow through the south that year.. I had first hand knowledge of this as I had a neighbor and good friend who was a subcontractor for FEMA who was setting these trailers up for use buy those who were afflicted by those hurricanes.. I rode along with him for about a month just to see all the devastation the hurricanes had caused, and was introduced to a couple of the field directors in charge of these trailers being distributed, and is where I had heard that after the hurricane victims had gotten their lives somewhat back together were offered these trailers for an extremely reduced, cost and the rest were sold at auction…!

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