I just finished building my tiny house, the Humble Trundle, in September 2015. In my freshman year of college, I began to look into alternative ways to use the money that would be flying out the door at rent. VW bus, living in a basement, even renting the study cubicles and sleeping at them at night came to mind. I enjoy camping and VW buses are awesome; so I tried to convince my mom to let me renovate one. This was out of the question for my mom. Discouraged and frustrated, I began to pour over the internet for another options. One night, I stumbled upon these small structures built upon flatbed trailers and I knew I had found my match. I began to spend countless hours researching everything I would need to know in building the house. I eventually convinced my mother that the idea would save money and was practical in the long run. Before I had her final permission however, I had to budget out in a spreadsheet every single screw and 2x4. While few people supported or agreed with what I wanted to accomplish, I was finally was given the green light.
Fast forward to June 2014. Freshman year had gone and passed and I was set up with an apartment for upcoming year. I had done hours of research learning everything I had to know in building the house and knew I had to start working pronto. I bought the trailer mid-June, and the rat race began to finish the exterior of the house before heading back to school. I had the basic design planned out in my head, but I believe the best innovation and creativity comes from designing along the way. I had two jobs during this summer, one as a waiter full-time and another as a part-time research assistance. Moreover, a great deal of the time I was building the house by myself, making things even more difficult. Luckily, I managed to finish the exterior of the house before returning to school. In the summer of 2015, I worked on the interior of the house while working full-time as an intern at Hagerty. Working on the interior of the house was physically a much lighter load, but also more complicated. Designing a livable space in 170 square feet is tricky. I decided to DIY everything for the interior: couches, cabinets, bathroom, etc. I did so primarily to save money, but also to make the house my own. I knew things wouldn't be perfect, but that's what makes the house unique.
#TinyHouse Open House Sunday, August 30th, 1-7pm. Stop by if you're around. #humbletrundle A photo posted by @chriscerk on
While looking over hundreds of tiny houses, I slowly began to decide what I wanted out of mine. Many tiny houses seem to have a very limited seating section and counter-top space. Therefore, I decided to build two couches big enough for 2 people to sleep on and around 30 square feet of tabletop space. Half of the tabletop is detachable & on wheels to use as a dinner table or desk in the main area. I also installed double doors, 4 windows, and two skylights in order to make the house feel spacious. The couches are even built much higher than a standard height to make you feel smaller. White, birch painted plywood was used for the walls in order to brighten and expand the feel of the home.