Tiny Solar House Plans

Ironically this is my 400th post on Tiny House Design. I really hadn’t planned to do anything special for the 400th post but this does mark a personal milestone for me. Over the last year and a half of exploring tiny houses through blogging I’ve presented many design ideas, some of my own and many from other people. What began as an exploration is slowly turning into a self-sustaining endeavor that should give me more and more time to dedicate to tiny houses and simple living.

My skills with Google SketchUp, the free 3D drawing software, has reached a level where I’m able to create  quality house plans. You’ve probably seen me talk about Tiny Prefab, a 90 page ebook I’ve written dedicated to a DIY prefab building system and you’ve probably also noticed the free tiny house plans I’ve drawn.


I’m now going to begin publishing a series of low cost tiny house plans, in addition to all the other normal writing I do about tiny houses and the first is the Tiny Solar House. I’m keeping the cost low because I really want to help empower other people to find their own housing solutions as much as I want to achieve a self-sustaining lifestyle for myself. I think you’ll see by the quality of the sample pages below that the plans are probably worth more than $9.99 but I’m committed to keeping all my house plans affordable.

The tiny house plans are available as an electronic PDF document that you can buy (via PayPal) and download to your computer. As I receive feedback on any of my designs I’ll incorporate it back into the plans and send out updates to buyers periodically.

I’m currently working on several ideas for future house plans but would love to hear what you’d like to see.

Tiny Solar House – Simple Do-It-Yourself Tiny House Plans
PDF Format – 40 Pages – $9.99

Buy Now

tiny solar house sample page 1

Tiny Solar House – Simple Do-It-Yourself Tiny House Plans
PDF Format – 40 Pages – $9.99

Buy Now

15 thoughts on “Tiny Solar House Plans

  1. Mark Harrison says:

    Congratulations Michael on reaching the great 400 posts!

    Any chance of seeing metric equivalents for your plans and ebook?

    Here’s to the next 400!

  2. Epperson says:

    Congratulations and more importantly, thank you!

    I enjoy seeing your designs being worked and re-worked. I love the pre-fab approach.

    Have you considered designing an unconventional Tiny House?

    For example, the Yurt or Geodesic Dome. They are very affordable, efficient and transportable. And there’s a growing market for these homes given the economy and strict regional building codes.

    What prevents most people in this market from buying a kit from one of the major outlets is the price. Broken down, it’s just canvas, bubble wrap, 2×4 rafters, pressure ring, cable wire and a lattice frame. If purchased or constructed individually, the savings would be enormous. There’s only a few books out there on this subject.

    With a Geodesic Dome, it takes some precision but if the math is correct, everything else will fall into place.

  3. Kent Griswold says:

    Congratulations Michael and another winner as far as tiny house design goes. Having had the chance to look over your plans, you have done a fantastic job.

    The plans are easy to follow, the graphics are incredible and the value of these plans is way more than you are selling them for. I know others who are selling their plans for 10 times this amount and you will not find the detail in them that Michael has included here.

  4. Laura says:

    I am a single mother of three children ages 1, 10, and 13. I have looked at the park model homes with loft options, but they do not have separate sleeping areas (for a boy and a girl). If I had my “druthers,” I would like to build a completely self-contained, off-grid unit with approx. 350-399 sqft with a bedroom in the back, bathroom, stackable W/D, kitchen/living area. I have several floor plans of park models that could be tweaked to meet my little family’s needs. Is this a project you, or anyone else, would be interested in? We would essentially be living in 90 sqft/person. I think this still qualifies for micro-housing and could potentially serve as a model for other small families. I have resources to build it, a place to park, and access to water and power. I like that it can be moved because I do not know where I am going to go to medical school. As long as it is on wheels and under 400 sqft, it qualifies as an RV and does not require building permits. Although it needs to be on wheels and would require an over-sized load permit to transport, I don’t anticipate moving it very often. Thank you for your consideration. Any suggestions/comments are very welcome and greatly appreciated.

  5. Kieran says:

    Nicely done, Michael!

    I’m glad to have found your blog. I will buy this up soon; I like the idea of a house that can be expanded upon as needed.

    Out of curiosity (or as a suggestion for a future idea), do you intend on putting together some sort of plans for that shed (even though it already had some detailed plans) that you posted back in October? I would love to see that shed’s design turned into a small home; it seemed perfect for passive solar and rainwater collection.

    Take care,


  6. SteveR says:

    Hi Michael,

    I wish you continued success as an outlet for small/tiny house design and in your interest to have it sustain you.

    I laughed at the comment about the ‘south wall’ for us S.Hemispherers, though we are quite used to orienting things oppositely to most written materials.

    Mark Harrison makes a valid point in his response above. Even if your plans are hemisphere independent, your plans very much use N.American standard dimensions and building techniques. Remember, the US is the last place on earth that still uses imperial measure, but it is probably your largest market so makes sense to go with the design as you have it.

    To expand your market to ROW (Rest of World), you will have to consider other building techniques, sizes of materials and availability of standard materials.

    All the best..Steve in New Zealand

  7. Michael Janzen says:

    Mark, SteveR… you’re absolutely right… I need to do a metric version and probably get some materials advice from folks that are more familiar with the areas other than the US. Thanks!

    Epperson… you know I’ve tried to stay away from more unconventional designs because they tend to be harder to build… but now that you mention it I know that not to be true. Geodesic domes, yurts, and so on are probably easier to build 🙂

    Laura… The whole park model market segment has been hit hard by the economy so you might find a great deal out there. It may be a little harder to finance than a mobile home because it falls into a different class of manufactured home. You might also want to consider looking at Tortoiseshell Homes http://www.tortoiseshellhome.com/ Bill Kastrinos has been building some longer tiny houses… 28-feet I think. This would be tight for a family but theoretically doable.

    Kieran… Is this the house? https://tinyhousedesign.com/2009/10/16/shed-building-step-by-step/

    Everyone… THANKS! The plans have been really popular so far and I’m getting started on the next design tonight.

  8. Kieran says:

    Yeah, that’s the one! I don’t even know that there’s much else that you could do plan-wise with that, since the builder already shared his photographs, but I like the possibilities it seems to have.

    I think its layout is perfect, with those small windows in between the dual roof, and instead of a small window on that wall, a big window for passive solar seems better. The way that the sun-facing wall is looks like it would be great for solar panels, too, and both roofs good for rainwater collection.

    But, then again, I don’t know anything about building, so I might be completely wrong, haha!

    I like that your site seems to be getting the attention it deserves — keep up the great work!

  9. Michael Janzen says:

    Thanks Kieran. That one was on my list. It’s a really classic shape and I’ve seen many small solar houses like it so I know it will work well. Thanks!

  10. Kieran says:

    Congratulations, Michael – now when I type in “tiny house blog” your site shows up second on Google, whereas it used to show up fourth or fifth.

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