Thank you for entering the Celebrate Your Space Competition!
In this Celebrate Your Space Competition, you will be entering a contest to be selected for a custom plan design valued at $1,200. There will be only 1 winner with contest closing on December 22th, 2013 and winning name drawn on Christmas Day. You will receive a set of custom plans for your tiny house, which includes floor plan, 4 elevations, cutaways, wall sections, structural plan, framing plan and material list.
Size of tiny house square feet limited to between 50 and 500 sqft.
Please complete the entry fee below. Paypal will ask you for your name, address, and email preference Allow 4-6 weeks for the design process.
All proceeds from this Celebrate Your Space competition will be donated to the Red Cross for disaster relief.
Quality is never an accident; it is always the result of high intention, sincere effort, intelligent direction and skillful execution; it represents the wise choice of many alternatives.
— William A. Foster
It has been said on a tiny house blog in January;
“Lots of folks think about using metal studs for the construction of tiny houses because of the weight advantages.
Although it’s becoming well-known that the screws can come loose when you tow your tiny house due to the vibration.”
We would like to address the issue of the screws in steel framed tiny houses.
With the road vibration from moving a tiny house, it is possible that screws would loosen up over time. That fact alone is the main reason we took the extra step of welding all pieces to make a stronger frame than could be possible with just screwing pieces together. After welding, the joints are actually stronger than the original piece of steel as now it has taken on the characteristics of the area around the welds similiar to tempered steel. This is an added step to make sure we deliver a product that will last a lifetime.
One of my favorite chilis to cook in my tiny house is Anytime Turkey Chili. It is easy and quick to make.
When I 1st started to learn to cook, chili was easy, some hamburger, kidney beans, onions, tomato ketchup, and tomato paste. Since then, I have graduated up just a little bit, and here is a recipe I found that I like to use. Notice the pumpkin and brown sugar added. It is like getting a Thanksgiving dinner in a bowl.
2/3 cup chopped sweet onions
½ cup chopped green pepper
1-1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 can (16 oz) kidney beans, rinsed and drained
1 can (15-1/2 oz) great northern beans, rinsed and drained
1 can (15 oz) solid-pack pumpkin
1 can (15 oz) crushed tomatoes
1 can (14-1/2 oz) reduced sodium chicken broth
½ cup water
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons chili powder
½ teaspoon pepper
3 cups cubed cooked turkey breast*
In a large saucepan, sauté the onion, green pepper, oregano, garlic and cumin in oil until vegetables are tender. Stir in the beans, pumpkin, tomatoes, broth, water, brown sugar, chili powder and pepper; bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 1 hour. Add turkey; heat thru.
Tasty Tip – The chili is a perfect dish to prepare when you are looking for ways to use up the turkey leftovers from Thanksgiving
Nutrition Facts; 1 cup equals 241 calories, 2 g fat (trace saturated fat), 45 mg cholesterol, 478 sodium, 32 g carbohydrates, 10 g fiber, 25 g protein
Diabetic exchanges; 3 very lean meat, 1-1/2 starch, 1 vegetable
Looking for a kit for solar power for a tiny house has been a challenge. We can find pieces here and other pieces there, but finding a readily adaptable kit for a tiny house, small cabin has been difficult…until now. Zamp Solar offers kits depending on amps per hour for small dwellings. We will be using these kits as add-ons for our tiny houses.
(750 watt pictured)
600 Watts of charging power! (using four 150 watt solar modules)
This kit will charge your 12 volt battery bank at a rate of 33.5 DC amps per hour under optimal sun conditions. Built in 60 amp MPPT solar controller will prevent overcharging the batteries.
Perfect for small off grid, outbuildings and cabins where the power usage is moderate. The inverter will run a microwave for small periods of time along with other small 120 volt appliances and lights.
Recommended battery bank would be approximately 400 to 800 amp/hours capacity/deep cycle
At Tiny Green Cabins, LLC, we have over 50 years experience building with wood and our 1st tiny house, The Wildflower was built with a wood frame. Since then we developed a niche for building with welded steel parts, we would like to remind everyone that we still use a wood frame in a lot of our products. A wood frame is faster, easier, requires less time, and costs less in parts as well as fewer man hours.
The steel frame of a tiny house is 30% lighter than a comparable wood frame, yet steel has more strength than wood. Wood Tensile strength is rated at 40, while steel tensile strength is rated at 640 and higher, making steel 17x stronger than wood. When a weld is added for connections, the strength is enhanced; much like in an airplane or train.
Steel homes are usually screwed and bolted together, while wood homes are nailed and stapled together. A screws advantage is it does not loosen over time, while a nail will. At Tiny Green Cabins, besides screwing our steel framed tiny houses together, we also weld the connections for added tensile strengths and resistance to loosening from road vibrations while in transit.
Virtually all of steel is from recycled materials and no trees are sawn down or harmed in making of the steel frame.
One of the questions often asked is; which is less expensive? On a tiny house, wood is less expensive with savings of approximately $2,000 to $4,000 less depending on model. Some of our employees prefer to work with wood, while others like the change of pace with using steel.
For us at Tiny Green Cabins, we consider the bigger impact of liabilities and other potential issues. To us, in viewing the bigger picture, steel is a wiser choice, especially if one is thinking that it will be thinking of relocating quite often.
We field a number of questions about steel frames in a fire. Here are some facts about steel frames
1) Steel is non-combustible. It doesn’t ignite, burn, ‘char’ or contribute to flame or smoke spread.
2) White Pine (standard framing timber) will self ignite in a domestic oven at around 250 degrees C.
3) Steel doesn’t loose any structural integrity until well past 600 degrees C.
4) If your frame doesn’t ignite, and fire doesn’t get into your roof space, the chances of your house burning down are remote.
Here is a video from an Australian test for a steel framed house in a simulated brush fire.
Have a look at the video which shows a steel house frame in a simulated bush fire, tested by the CSIRO to the worst case scenario Bush Fire. You will see 1100+ degrees of direct, propane fueled fire attacking the frame for 2 minutes. Scary stuff, but the results were a true representation of the performance of a steel house frame under intense duress.
If you want to talk to us about a house in a bush and forest fire prone area; Californian, Arizona, Colorado, or areas similiar to the recently completed frame in Kinglake, Australia drop Jim a line at firstname.lastname@example.org
Tiny house love has not been a singular stroll for me, but it has taken a road that could be said to resemble the old quilt block my Great Grandma used to make, known as the “Drunkard’s Path.” Intoxicated by each new innovation and bursting with ideas, I would mull over Jay Shafer’s fabulous tiny adventures and imagine myself living in one. I could see myself dragging one of these babies around America stopping at every overlook and posing with it for Kodak moments. In my mind’s eye, my “want list” grew larger and the square footage I deemed necessary expanded with each model as I poured over the websites. How could I live in a closet and eschew that extra 100 square feet that I was certain I would need? I mean, isn’t a 200 square foot tiny still tiny?
Well of COURSE it is! But as I began to write for my own tiny house website, (now defunct, though not permanently, I hope), I ran into some facts that clashed with my dreams. After all, what are tiny house people if not dreamers? I came to understand that a tiny house would best suit its new inhabitants if planned according to the purpose for which it will be put to use. Or something like that.
What I learned is that if you wish to have a LARGE tiny house, (like perhaps one of the 210 square foot behemoths I mentioned above), it can only be moved once a year or less. The reason for this becomes apparent when considering the risks and legalities of such a transfer. It just does not lend its self to being dragged about like an airstream. Many of the experts state that with towing issues and legal necessities, that it is best for only a professional to move larger tiny houses.
As I pondered these complexities, my idea of what I “need” began to shrink. I puzzled how a loft, a sink, stove, toilet and TUB could be fit into increasingly smaller spaces. As I walked along the road and saw a small trailer, I began to think about how I could live in a super tiny space.
The answer was there all along. I am just not a huge consumer of space. My needs are fairly simple. Any storage of things like art supplies or sewing items that I could see myself using can easily be stored in an economical rented storage unit. Things do not own me, and I am happier with an awesome view than a thousand couches, loveseats, wide screen tvs and various unused bric-a-brac, (I never use that word, usually, but it is rather comical looking).
I am delighted that several builders are exploring the super-tiny concept. Here in Tennessee, Tennessee Tiny Homes just built an “outhouse” that is decked out in solar and can do seventy down the freeway! Try THAT with your behemoths! (It was nice knowing you…) Dan Louche recently designed the “Tiner Living” Home, which is sweet with dormers that give it a big feel, and Jay Shafer’s design the XS has never been larger than a diminutive 11x 7 or so. I have just found out that Tiny Green is coming out with a super affordable model that will be 8 x 10! It will be priced in the $10,000 range, and will of course feature the company’s hallmark quality construction with low fume materials that do not make you sick.
While I am not the type to dictate to others what choices they should make, nor attempt to make anyone feel guilty about the size of home they feel comfortable in, I am so happy that the smaller option is being offered. So one of these days, I hope to get the money together to purchase my own tiny, tiny, tiny home, and perhaps I will pass your outhouse doing 80 to the nearest overlook for photo ops.
Why climate change is not just an environmental issue.
The changing climate has been in and out of the news for years with people sounding the warnings of what may happen. Rising sea levels, lowland coasts being flooded, glaciers melting at an alarming rate, ice caps melting, strong super highs blocking low pressure cells creating super storms aka Sandy comes to mind, a new northern route for sea traffic, island nations trying to figure out how to not become swamped – and yet people keep on keeping on. Some are saying it is the sun cycle that is warming the planet, or the poles are shifting causing current and storm paths to change, or a natural earth cycle, or maybe, just maybe, mankind itself is a contributing factor by adding all the pollutants into the air.
At this point, whatever the cause, we are starting to feel the effects. Warmer climates in the north, record breaking highs across the country, record snowfalls in April, mega storms hitting the New England states, lakes levels dropping; we are all witnessing something new.
Are there other signs?
We do not have to look far for other things;
FEMA ordering 250k small transportable healthy living trailers/tiny houses
Camps being set up far inland
Homeland Security ordering large amounts of weaponry
Military drawing up contingency plans
Survivalists ordering and/or building self contained mobile units
Assessments on local, national, and global impacts
Hot Spots for building tiny houses are coastal
The predictions are rolling in that a lot coastal areas will be underwater by 2099. In the twentieth century the sea levels rose 7.9 inches and by the year 2099, they are predicted to rise another 23 inches. And that 23” is a big IF as long as the ice sheets melt at predicted rates. And that melting of the ice sheets in 2012 has increased at an alarming rate. That will mean a lot of displaced families and folks that need shelter, so the FEMA order and camps for refuges falls into a possible planning concept. How real is it? When people and governments start putting dollars and actions to scenarios, it is something to be concerned about.
I believe in leading indicators and as such; the rising oceans would have a set of serious set of consequences to deal with. Even, the Pentagon is starting to climate change take seriously, here and abroad, with assessments and various scenarios. From the New York Times, “The changing global climate will pose profound strategic challenges to the United States in coming decades, raising the prospect of military intervention to deal with the effects of violent storms, drought, mass migration and pandemics, military and intelligence analysts say. …..Such climate-induced crises could topple governments, feed terrorist movements or destabilize entire regions, say the analysts, experts at the Pentagon and intelligence agencies who for the first time are taking a serious look at the national security implications of climate change.”
People and agencies are preparing assessments and one of those assessments is the rising oceans will have serious and dire consequences on resources and infrastructure and includes massive evacuations and migrations of people inland.
So, this is what I see in the future, more people will live and utilize transportable structures such as tiny houses rather than tradition housing, and this will be spurred on by government, insurance companies, and code changes. We already know that in flood plains, which cannot get insurance on permanent homes – in fact people are encouraged to move or use the land as a camping site/temporary stay. I think that insurance companies will stop insuring permanent residences on coastal areas that may go underwater, and yet they will encourage and insure transportable structures aka tiny houses that can be moved inland easily when severe weather approaches.
I have heard from some tiny house builders that the hot spots are the Northwest, New England States, and Gulf areas. People are not only loving the idea of living small, but the security of knowing that if and when a severe storm or high water approaches they can move inland to safety easily and quickly.
In the many phone calls I have received over the years, one of the key questions always asked, “If a storm or hurricane is approaching, how fast would I be able to move my tiny house?” My response is that it would only take an hour or two to hook up, disconnect from utilities and drive inland out of the storms way. Then come back when it is safe to return.
The number of survivalists that are calling or placing orders is increasing and they all want the ability to go off grid for extended periods of time and yet be secure enough that they can park their tiny house on a rock and leave it, if needed, while maintaining their ability to work along the seaboards.
Here are some just in case thoughts if you are living in a coastal or flood plain area or for that matter anyplace that might experience a natural disaster; hurricanes, earthquakes, tornadoes, floods, tsunami, forest fire or any an act of God.
Know the types of hazards that could affect your family, and know your home’s vulnerability to storm surge, floods, and wind. Find out if you live in an evacuation zone and keep track of which zone it is. If you live close to the floodplain, consider flood insurance.
Make plans for where you’ll go, preferably outside the vulnerable area, or consider the closest possible public shelter. Have a single point of contact for your family members to keep in touch. Make a plan now for what to do with your pets if you need to evacuate.
Prepare your home prior to leaving: board up doors and windows, secure or move all yard objects indoors, and turn off all utilities. Fill your car with gas, withdraw extra money from the ATM, and be sure to take all prescription medicines and special medical items, such as glasses and diapers.
If you live in an evacuation zone and are ordered to evacuate by state or local officials, do so as quickly as possible. Do not attempt to cross flowing water. As little as six inches of water may cause you to lose control of your vehicle.
Stay tuned to a local radio or television station and listen carefully for any advisories or specific instructions from local officials. Monitor your NOAA weather radio. Remember to replace its battery every six months, as you do with your smoke detectors.