How to start building a tiny house

Well, this is officially my first blog post! Better late then never right? I have been living in the tiny house for a while now (moved in late August 2015) and I must say it is going wonderfully! For this first post, I would like to tackle a subject I often am asked. “How did you start the building process?” or “What are the first steps?”.  My answer is very simple. Don’t think about it too much! Some of us (including myself) worry unnecessarily, question ideas or make decisions based on fear of the unknown. Of course there is a certain level of planning and resources that are needed for a project like building a tiny house however, I feel that does not have much to do with the first steps. Here are my suggestions to get the ball rolling: 

1. Doodle, draw & sketch your ideas

You do not have to be an artist or create anything professional. You do not even need to show anyone. It can be simple, messy or chaotic. The intention is just to get the ideas flowing. Sometimes I like to use graph paper other times a dry-easer marker on the window is more fun. There are no wrong answers here and you may be surprised on what you are able to create. 

2. Find images of small buildings you love 

I am sure you all have seen many gorgeous tiny houses, cabins, yurts, tree houses, micro homes ect. on Pinterest, Instagram and other websites. Start saving the images you like and keep them in a file on your computer. Cut photos out of magazines or even trace them out of books so you have a collection of inspiration. You can also take bits and pieces of the buildings to help form ideas and designs. Some of my favourite inspirations come from the Tiny House Swoon and Cabin Porn

3. Check out other tiny houses in person 

I can guarantee no matter where you live there is already a tiny house or small structure near you. Often people who have built a tiny house are happy to show them off! There are also tiny house communities open to the public and now you can even rent one for the weekend. This will give you a better idea of what kind of structure you want to build yourself.

4. Connect with the tiny house community 

Reach out to others who have completed a build or in the process of building a small structure. The tiny house community is a wonderful place. Volunteer for the day to help with the build so you could see what the process is really like or even a quick chat over a cup of tea and listen to what they have to say. 

Most importantly, have fun with this beginning process. I would not worry about the logistics of how you will build, why you would do it, how much it will cost or where the house will go. That will all come with time. 

Have more suggestions for the first step of going tiny? Leave your comments below. : )

7 thoughts on “How to start building a tiny house

  1. I LOVE this Rebecca and hope to visit your tiny home one day. I just ‘happen’ to know another tiny home builder who is enjoys his just as much…nice and cozy with the wood stove! 😀 xo


    1. You are welcome to visit anytime Deb! I look forward to seeing his house next time I am back east, it has been a while. ❤


  2. I love how you make things look much simpler, it,s really encouraging! I,m currently living on SSI and I was wondering if I could visit if it,s not too invading of your personal space. Let me know. Thank you for that post. I found it unexpectedly while doing some research about earthships and tiny houses.


    1. Hi Penelope, sure, give me an email and we can chat further rebecca.grim (at)


  3. I liked your process of starting a tiny house. I have a tendency to be a little bit of a perfectionist and want it to be perfect before I start anything. You post reminds me of a saying I hears once that goes… “you don’t have to get it right, you just have to get it going.


  4. I really enjoyed your article. Would be lovely if you posted more frequently. Personally, I recently joined the Tiny House Movement and am enjoying every bit of it.

    If fact, my love is so great that i personally built a picture site dedicated to the tiny house movement. You can share all your Tiny house living pics from your building process to plans used, for the benefit of others just joining our movement and to attract readership back to your awesome blog. What do you think? I really would love to know.


    1. Thank you. I love your website and your ideas. I’m currently traveling and will be back home in a month or so and plan on focusing more on the blogs, plans and such. Let’s talk more then 🙂


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