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Man Builds 200 Sq. Ft. Solar Off Grid Tiny House

I’m thrilled to show you Ben Barthell’s 200 sq. ft. solar off grid tiny house that he built himself on a recycled 24′ x 8.5′ trailer (so yes- it’s mobile).

This DIY micro cabin has all of the amenities of home but I’d say it’s even better because:

  • It’s completely self sustaining.
  • It can power itself using a solar panel energy system.
  • It’s built mostly out of recycled materials.
  • It meets all quality construction standards.

Best of all, it’s affordable, easy to maintain, and light on the environment (and the wallet).

Ben’s Shopdog Solar Off Grid Tiny House

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Images © Ben Barthell

I hope you enjoy touring Ben Barthell’s incredible tiny house below and if you’re interested in having him design and build you one just get with him over at his site below.

Tiny Kitchen Big Sink 🙂

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For me, a big sink in a tiny kitchen is absolutely necessary so I was so happy to see one here. Obviously it’s great to have a big sink if you don’t have a dishwasher. Nice job Ben! And very impressive one-level tiny house design (especially for those of us who don’t like ladders or even staircases to lofts).

 One-Level Tiny House (No Ladders. No Lofts. No Stairs.)

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Beautiful design, construction and finish work. I’d be honored to a house built by these guys, wouldn’t you?

Cozy Bedroom Nook

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Modern Luxurious Micro Bathroom

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Images © Ben Barthell

Built by Ben Barthell at Shopdog. Originally shared on Tiny House Swoon and Tiny House Listings.

If you enjoyed this mortgage-free 200 sq. ft. solar off grid tiny house spread the word using the share buttons below and join our Free Daily Tiny House Newsletter for even more!

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Alex

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!
{ 25 comments… add one }
  • megan June 21, 2014, 5:22 pm

    I love the built in spice rack in the kitchen and the built in hidden closet on the wall in the bedroom. Wish there was more info on how exactly he’s using it off the grid. Always want as much info as can get on off grid living :). Also, didn’t see a toilet?

    • Ben June 21, 2014, 9:20 pm

      Hi Megan thanks for the note!
      The house uses a 750 watt PV solar system with 8, 6volt batteries. This is a 24 volt system inverted to 1500 watts 110volts AC. It is fully self contained and produces all the electricity the house needs and quite a bit more.

      The solar water system uses a closed glycol system that heats the 25 gal pressurized hot water tank through a built in heat exchanger.
      The water in the tank stays around 125 degrees average so plenty of hot water for showers/dish washing and laundry. (There is a small washer dryer in the the utility room next to the batteries.)

      I have a fantastic Separette composting toilet that I would recommend in any house. It is very easy to clean and maintain (no electrics or other stuff to go wrong) and it honestly doesn’t stink! it works great.

      Please let me know if you need any more details, id be happy to fill you in!

      • Alex June 23, 2014, 9:32 pm

        Thanks Ben!!

      • Paul November 21, 2014, 3:48 am

        Hi Ben… would that be the Villa 9000 or the Villa 9020 composting toilet. How often does this normally take before “you” need to remove the compostible remains? Obviously the more people the quicker it is going to have to be emptied, but just a ballpark figure would be handy.

        thanks in advance.

  • david June 21, 2014, 5:29 pm

    Very nice.

  • Lisa E. June 21, 2014, 6:37 pm

    Love the over-bed closet with the drop-down door; very kewl.
    Love the kitchen; nice and homey but with an eyebrow window view (for the security conscious.)
    The sink in the bathroom is marvelous and gives warmth to a functional dead zone.
    Love the wide floor boards and the arched (Cedar?) ceiling; very nice.
    I’m glad he put all of the unattractive utility equipment behind a closed door.
    All in all: Great job!

  • Patrick Lee June 21, 2014, 6:58 pm

    Awesome tiny home, I would have no problem living in it…Wow, fantastic job!!!

  • TB June 21, 2014, 7:57 pm

    I am enamored with most tiny homes and this is no exception. I love the kitchen and the bathroom as well as the lighting and the ceiling. One drawback for me is the bed. I see this in many tiny homes and I realize the space issues, but I believe I would find a way to do a fold out or some kind of Murphy bed before I would have a bed that goes wall to wall in all directions so I’d have to crawl all over it to make it up. As always, ymmv.

  • Dominick Bundy June 21, 2014, 8:22 pm

    Very nice and well thought out. (like that closet concept) But having the bed mattress that flush with the door entrance. Would be a big pain (I can only imagine) to try to change the bedding or make the bed..that’s all..

  • Ida June 22, 2014, 6:49 pm

    Very nice, Ben! Your kitchen inspires me. And the utility room. Very handy. I’m very interested in your hot water set-up. I’ll be researching it next weekend. Thanks!

    • Ben June 22, 2014, 7:48 pm

      Ida, Thanks much!
      The Water heating system is a closed loop glycol system using a 4×8 solar panel that circulates hot water to a heat exchanger inside a pressurized 20 gal hot water tank. The system uses a delta switch that simply turns the circulation pump on when the solar panel temp is hotter than the water in the hot water tank…and shuts off when the tank is water is hotter than the solar panel. Very simple and very efficient! the water in the tank averages 125 degrees so lots of hot water for showers, dishes and such…

  • Brian July 12, 2014, 2:01 am

    Love the look and feel Ben and especially the bathroom away from the kitchen. The outside looks cool and it weathers to a great colour. As you said it looks better in person. Well done Ben and thanks for sharing.
    Cheers from Australia

  • Michael July 18, 2014, 6:51 pm

    I like it. However, adding a murphy bed would gain some more space and create a working or relaxing place. Sure you are loosing the storage under the bed but without a loft you can easy add it under the floor in certain areas.

  • B.T. August 27, 2014, 2:04 am

    Ben, great job on your beautiful tiny home. I think it’s totally awsome. I spend alot of time in N.M. Farmington and Gallop, mostly.Next time I’m down there I’ll drop by your shop and check out your tiny homes. Again beautiful craftmanship.

  • Laura August 27, 2014, 12:38 pm

    Hi David, love your tiny hose. In general, what would you charge to build one?

  • KenK October 27, 2014, 9:31 am

    Dude ty for showing your utility room! I am a carpenter/builder so the structure is the no worries area for me. I am thinking DC for LED lighting and outlets for a fixed voltage required appliance. Then an inverter for standard outlets. Any advice is way appreciated. thx KenK

  • jermaine November 19, 2014, 10:58 am

    Hello Ben. Just bought a cabin shell I ran across your article while searching for a composting toilet. What kind of do you recommend that I purchase? Thank you.

  • Deborah November 20, 2014, 2:58 pm

    I like your TH!
    Please tell me WHERE the utility room is located. And the second door going to the outside… is that the access door to the utility space (although the photo of the elec. components, etc. looks larger than the width of the shower… which I am guessing is on the opposite wall). If so, then the toilet is tucked in between the shower/sink and utility closet??
    Hmmm, not said very well, how about this: The back wall, from left to right, has the shower, then sink, then toilet, then a wall, then the utility closet (accessible from outside). Is this correct?
    Thanks for answering.

  • Justin Falen November 20, 2014, 11:55 pm

    Very nice; I’m thinking of doing something very similar and have a question regarding the floor plan. I was thinking of reversing your placement of bedroom and bathroom, which would put the bathroom and kitchen next to each other on one end. My thinking is that this would simplify the plumbing and keep the interior water lines to a minimum. Is there a reason for your choice in layout other than possible sanitary concerns?

    • Alex November 21, 2014, 10:21 am

      Good points, Justin, from what I’ve noticed people usually do it for sanitary/smelly concerns 😀

  • Tonita May 24, 2015, 4:40 pm

    Hi Ben,
    Followed your link after reading a great comment you made on this site on Jan 14, 15 . I really like the materials you used in your tiny home and the one level design. Great use of space and nice colors. Nice job.

  • Terri November 23, 2015, 8:39 am

    Really really nice and great info. Thanks for sharing!!

  • Dawne Forrester April 14, 2016, 11:11 pm

    Love the tiny house. Some day when I don’t have 7 kids at home, I may hit you up for one 😉

  • Large Marge July 26, 2016, 10:43 pm

    A gas range and oven burn tremendous amounts of oxygen while dumping tremendous amounts of Carbon Monoxide and water vapor into the living space.

    Please, include a powered exhaust fan over the sink and cooking area!

  • Stephen Gibbs July 28, 2016, 7:19 pm

    This is awesome! Great job Ben!! One of the nicest I’ve seen. What is the approximate cost, and how long does it take to build? Do you have other models? I’m looking for one with both a bedroom & a loft. Love that it’s entirely self-contained! Looking forward to hearing from you?

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