Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Big Tiny Plans

So, after much consideration, hours of admiration, scheming, dreaming, and self evaluation, I have a new goal in mind: I want to build a Tiny House.

I first came upon the Tiny House movement when I realized that I couldn't keep my marital house post divorce. To do so, would require me to earn $70K + a year, and I've learned that such jobs involve way too much time and stress. I gave up stress, so I tend to avoid putting myself in situations that cause my blood pressure to rise. I decided a while ago I want to live a simpler life, with less things. In that quest, I considered life in an airstream or similar situation. That option is still on the table. But, the idea of a tiny house on wheels is has captured my imagination and hope for possibilities.

Here's a few reasons why:  

1.  I like the idea of building my own home. It's a great project that will require a lot of new skills. I like the idea of expanding my knowledge as well as my capabilities.

2.  Although it will cost me a good amount of money, it's not cost prohibitive. Most Tiny House projects run at about the $25K range, but there are a lot of exceptions. Some homes were built for as little as $11K. I'm a master of doing things on a shoestring, and I'm pretty confident I can source a lot of what I need at a discount. Plus, once it's built, my housing costs will remain low, and I can take it with me where ever I go. 

3.  I'm already accustomed to Tiny living. I've actually lived Tiny several times in my life.  In the Army, I lived in a very small barracks space and much of my life fit in two duffle bags. More recently, while I going back and forth between California and Japan, and between California and Canada, I aspired to be able to fit my life into one check bag and a carry-on. It's a work in progress. 

4.  I have a place to live. When I return to California in 2015, I will move back into my childhood home with my sister, where I can stay indefinitely at a very low cost. This will allow me the freedom to save money for my build as well as provide the stability safety net I need to take on this project.

I know there are a lot of hurdles and challenges ahead. There's a lot to consider: where to build, where to place the sucker, other debt that needs to be paid down prior to building. I also accept that at some point I might decide it's just not feesable to build my own home, although I'm totally in love with the idea. For the moment what I have is the desire and the beginnings of a plan.  The most important thing for me is that I know what I want to do, and have a general direction I'm heading towards. 

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