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Man Builds Tiny House for Less Than $5k for his Family

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This man with a family of 4 (and 5th on the way) started his tiny house project in August of 2012 and finished it August 2013 while working part-time. He did all of the work himself and found much of the materials he used for the build on Craigslist.

By using salvaged materials, including a free travel trailer that he stripped down completely, he was able to finish the entire tiny home for less than $5,000. But it did take a lot of work in terms of labor.

Recently the family has given away their tiny house to a minister in New York and they are now preparing to buy a large 5th wheel travel trailer so they can travel the country together as a family. Please enjoy the videos below to learn more.

Man Builds Tiny House for Family for less than $5k


Images © marrieddragoon/youtube

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Images © marrieddragoon/youtube

Video 1: Man Builds $5k Tiny House for his Family (Construction Phase)

Video 2: Man Builds $5k Tiny House for his Family (Tiny House Living Phase)

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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!
{ 26 comments… add one }
  • Heather MacDonald
    October 29, 2014, 6:37 pm

    Very sweet little place. My only complaint about the tiny houses is the sleeping arrangements. I’d tire of those cramped bunks fast. Has anyone seen An American In Paris lately? The little apartment (set?) at the beginning is amazing. I love the bed. It’s in the middle of the room. When not in use it’s hoisted up by a pulley, the legs flip up to conceal them and it fits snuggly against the ceiling. Clever! And comfy! : )

  • Lea Borden
    October 30, 2014, 12:59 am

    Yeaa Team! I hope at some point in time your kids really understand and appreciate what a fine job you are doing on a hope for your family!! Congradulations & Best Regards

  • Tom
    October 30, 2014, 1:09 am

    I think you have really captured what the Tiny House movement is all about. Practicality, “sweat-equity”, economy, resourcefulness, and above all… it looks like your family has put a lot of love and effort into creating a home of your own. Way to go!

    • Marcy
      November 4, 2014, 10:48 am

      I agree, Tom. I’ve seen some beautiful tiny homes that are $30,000 – $40,000. But it’s hard to imagine those homes mean more to their owners than this one. It’s attractive, practical, and so economical.

    • Jane
      December 21, 2014, 8:37 pm

      They loved it so much they gave it away. Guess it wasn’t the same living in it as building it.
      It would be much too dark for me. Too bad he didn’t like paint. Twig railings go so beautifully with white.
      It is wonderful to see that it can be done inexpensively. My question is how well built it is. Ventilation and moisture control is often something seen as self-regulating, to many a th builder’s regret later on. Mold is the quickest way to make a home like this unlivable. Deek has an excellent YouTube video on this. A few th owners that I know have had problems, too. I’ll be being extra careful about this. Not a criticism on this house in particular. Just a musing about one of my biggest concerns, since I’m building to get out of a moldy house, right now.

  • Dan da Man
    October 30, 2014, 8:56 am

    I concur with Nita Hiltner… in fact internally I’d say it’s mega fugly!

    But ya know, that’s my personal opinion, and if everybody liked the same thing it’d be a pretty dull world eh?

    • Marcy
      November 4, 2014, 10:50 am

      I guess not everyone can appreciate the cabin-in-the-woods look.

      • Candide33
        January 17, 2015, 12:57 pm

        Hahaha, it took me a second to get that one.

  • Adela
    October 30, 2014, 7:14 pm

    A home all your own! Excellent. Hope you make great memories in it.

  • brenda taylor
    January 12, 2015, 2:22 pm

    You’ve done a fabulous job building a home for your family, and you’ve done it on a budget. It’s not uncommon to see Tiny Homes selling for over $100,000! Anyone could do it with that amount of cash! You’ve created a comfortable and secure home for your family, and you’ve done it without going in to debt. My hat is off to you!

  • Brian
    January 17, 2015, 1:03 pm

    Oh well done. You can have my $5000 anytime. Yeah I would change a few things but altogether its just great. Thanks for sharing. Cheers from Australia.

  • Marsha Cowan
    January 17, 2015, 5:39 pm

    Warm and inviting home! I know those boys love living there. Good job! Very pretty..

    • Marsha Cowan
      January 17, 2015, 5:41 pm

      By the way, amazing that you did all that for just 5k!

  • CathyAnn
    January 17, 2015, 6:13 pm

    Amazing! Love what you did, and for so little money! That’s what I call resourceful.

  • Mary Low
    February 7, 2015, 2:29 pm

    Love that the kitchen is a ‘real’ working kitchen, with all the pots hanging and shelves open and full 0f all that’s needed by the cook! Wonderful!

  • Brad
    April 10, 2015, 7:01 pm

    Hay thanks for this guys. I am the builder of this house, it taught me so much and I would be glad to help give information to anyone else who is ready to take the plunge.

  • Brad
    April 10, 2015, 7:08 pm

    We are now only a few weeks away from, hitting the road. There will be a string of videos that will allow, people to keep up with us, as we live out the DEBT FREE life. We will include tips, from our personal experiences over the last few years. With our GRAND GOAL being to buy a piece of large land, somewhere in the USA, for CASH, then start a small family farm. What better way to find the perfect place then to travel, the country while saving up money. Thanks for the great write up!

  • Amber
    May 28, 2015, 5:34 pm

    Thank you so vary much. I’m a single mom. I’v been dreaming of building for about 3 or 4 years. But living in apartments never a place to build, or money to build bla bla bla. But you did a darling tiny house with only 5k. Wow. Again thank you. You inspire me.

    • Cyndi Raper
      May 28, 2016, 4:39 pm

      Amber I too was a single mom until I remarried a few years ago my husband who was in the trades taught me how to economically build our first tiny home it’s now going to be our mission for homeless people in Florida contact me privately and I’ll tell you tips that will get you and your little ones into a tiny house on Wheels quicker than you can imagine best of luck to you

  • Trish
    May 28, 2015, 9:02 pm

    My absolutely favorite — the small shelf under the cabinet for the boxes of tea made from branches.

  • Mary J
    May 29, 2015, 12:45 pm

    this title says it all – man builds tiny house for his family

    that is what it’s all about – a father providing a home for his wife and kids. and even if it isn’t huge, it’s become a home with love and hard work from Mum and Dad. well done. it’s not how much money we throw at our homes but it’s about making the effort building and creating so that there is safety, love, enough beds and protection from the elements. and of course, it is a lovely home with colour and obvious happiness. well done

  • Andre
    June 4, 2015, 11:43 am

    This is great, the guy has done so well and achieved a lovely home. Well done. Very creative and resourceful.

  • Kay
    May 28, 2016, 3:48 pm

    I am impressed by the full-size appliances in the kitchen, and that it was done for a tiny price. Inspiring!

  • Lisa E.
    May 28, 2016, 9:17 pm

    Great job, guys! Love it! 😀

  • Enhance XL
    December 26, 2016, 3:47 am

    I am delighted that I noticed this web blog, exactly the
    right info that I was searching for!

    • Natalie
      December 27, 2016, 11:40 am

      So glad to hear that! — Tiny House Talk Team

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