My husband and I took matters into our own hands and decided to buy some property and a prefab shelter, and turn it into the tiny house of our dreams. My husband found a great deal on some land in the Ozarks of Missouri. We scored 3 acres for under $1000.00. We then ordered a prefab barn style shed for $3000.00, but are able to make monthly payments, so it wasn't cash down!
|The day our cabin was delivered!|
When we first got the shelter, that's all it was, a shelter. It was hard to imagine what we could accomplish with these bare bones, four walls and a roof. No electricity, no plumbing, no insulation, just a fancy box. But, the experience has been amazing and we have learned so much.
|The first night with a single lantern.|
|The raw exposed walls.|
We spent our first weekend in the cabin with a lantern and a denatured alcohol fireplace. It was cold and creepy, but it was also amazing. Spending the night with my husband and our husky, all snuggled up under the covers was the mark of the beginning of something tiny and great.
After that first weekend, we immediately started devising a vision and setting it into motion. One of the first projects we started on was putting up the walls. We choose solid birch plywood planks to finish the interior walls. We decided not to use insulation because the cabin is so small, we don't want it completely air tight, for safety reasons. So far, we've gotten most of the walls up, but still need to frame out the windows.
The next project was finishing the flooring. We got some beautiful fo cherry wood laminate flooring on discount and covered up the cheap plywood sub floor.
After the walls and the flooring, we decided the next step was some sort of kitchen counter and shelves. We found some old wood pallets and re purposed them to be the facia for the kitchen counter, along with a matching shelf to mount on the wall above it. The counter continues across the entire length of the back wall. We also purchased a spicket water canister and are using an old enamel bowel for the kitchen sink.
|The completed kitchen counter and shelving.|
The photograph to the left shows the Rynogy 100wat solar panel on the back of the cabin. You can also see the 45 Watt solar panels mounted on the top left.
The photograph on the right shows Charles talking about the charge controller and the wiring that we have temporarily set up, going to the light and the batteries.
We also have a generator wired to a standard 120v plug in the wall. We use this for higher capacity devices like the air conditioning and the electric cook top.
|New loft window with polar bear pillows.|
|Frostbite trying to sleep on HER couch.|
As you can see, it is possible to convert a prefab shelter into a tiny house. Whats best is how affordable and manageable it actually is. In all, we probably have around $10,000.00 into our tiny cabin in the woods. What important to understand is that we didn't spend this amount all at once, it has accumulated over time with every project we do. For us, it has been very manageable and even more enjoyable to work on this project over time. We still have to finish the ceiling, some walls, add to solar and make an indoor/outdoor bathroom, but were going to take our sweet time and hope that you will enjoy watching!