What is your biggest struggle with designing your dream tiny house?

Can I pick your brain? You’re here on this website so I assume you have an interest in tiny house design. I’m also guessing you see a tiny house in your future.

I’m such a geek for tiny house design that I started this blog 10 years ago, but for some unknown reason I’ve never thought to ask my readers this question.

What is your biggest struggle with designing your dream tiny house?

I want to design an online course to help folks design their own tiny house. I can think of a hundred ways to do that and about a thousand things to say – but instead I’d like to focus on the stuff you really want to know. So I thought I’d just ask you!

The people that leave me a comment answering that question as honestly as they can will receive a free pass to the course when it’s ready. Thanks!

69 thoughts on “What is your biggest struggle with designing your dream tiny house?

  1. Mark Kenney says:

    This is probably way more than you want to read :).

    Having now lived in a purpose built tiny house since 2011 (one I purchased as a complete outer shell and have customized over time) I can say that the old saw “form follows function” should be a mantra in the early planning. I think you really have to be clear on what it is you want to live in and whether or not you want it to be truly mobile in nature. My intent was to live more simply (it’s just me and a dog and a cat), reduce my possessions, and spend more time outside in our little slice of paradise. Recently, however, in a discussion on tiny houses, I had this thought:

    “This description popped into my head today. I live in 1) A small house with severe limitations, or 2) I have a really spacious bedroom with many added benefits. I flip flop between these two on a daily basis…”

    When I first moved out to our shared 40 acre parcel, I quickly began to complete a “Starplate” geodesic workshop and spent my first very cold year working and living in less than the space I currently inhabit. I then had an opportunity to purchase a true 1/2 hemisphere 20 ft. diameter Pacific Dome via craigslist, so then I lived in that for two years and loved it (still cold, but the geometry was so enchanting!) I endured two very disastrous windstorms, one which took my Costco 10×20 heavy duty canvas shelter and threw it 30 feet up into a tree, leaving all my belongings open to the weather, and then in my Pacific Dome, I had a “widowmaker” branch fly through the canvas dome wall and land right next to my bed in the middle of the night. That’s when I decided I’d better get a more solid structure built and began investigating tiny houses.

    It’s never really a good idea to shop in desperation, but I was able to find a local builder who was an old sawyer – milled his own wood for all his buildings from local timber stands, and he had a 10X20′ tiny house shell that was roughed in and wanted to sell. We dickered back and forth a bit, and I contracted with him to complete the interior to my specifications. I ended up with a tiny house that costs the same as a modest new sedan $25K, and for the most part I’ve been happy with the choices I made. I have since brought grid power to my site (before I was off grid and had a small solar DC power system, though the house is fully wired for AC, and I used a DC pump for water. I don’t lament that choice, especially out here in the PNW.


    Are you a cook? What space and appliances do you need to eat the way you wish to.
    Do you have a water hungry lifestyle? Sizing of water tanks, electric or gas, size of shower – all important.
    Do you have a power intensive life? Panel size on house – I had to double mine and create a subpanel for my workshop. How much light do you need, how much unused wall space will you want versus windows. I opted for as many windows as he would put it this structure, thus my available wall space is minimal. Built ins? Yeah, I should have really worked on that one. Sleeping space – your age and needs must determine whether or not you “go up” to sleep or make another arrangement. I have a 7X10 sleeping loft, but my access to it is narrow and steep, and I’m getting very creaky knees, etc. so I’ve opted for a small cot style bed downstairs that doubles like a daybed.

    There’s a whole lot more, but I’ll leave it at that. Be clear on what you want, and how much you want to do yourself and how much of a budget you want to encumber for professionals if you are not going to do the work yourself.

    • Elizabeth Little says:

      I would like to build my tiny studio out of steel. My RV trailer is stripped to the frame and with a bit of reinforcing it will be ready to build on. Because this is going to be my jewelry and lapidary studio weight is a big concern hence wanting to frame with steel. I contacted Volstruck but they are going to be to expensive for me. I have my windows and a door. I have a basic layout but I want to be sure it is going to be strong enough because it will end up in the Idaho panhandle.

    • Sally Gardner says:

      I find that a a senior designing a space that keeps the bedroom downstairs but still allows for a decent living room is a challenge! Any ideas?

  2. Alysia Fischer says:

    I built a tiny art studio rather than a tiny house (no plumbing). My biggest struggle was trying to figure out what was allowed where I live, especially because I got conflicting info depending on what county offices I called. Second to that was probably trying to figure out where to put the ladder for my large and small (2.5 ft deep) lofts. I had mapped out everything, and even built a 3D model but somehow I feel like the ladder is still not fully-resolved. I did end up buying a very tall used extending wooden ladder and cutting it down to fit and that part seems right, plus I have a ladder and a half left for future projects. I also did the ‘tinker toys with plumbing pipe’ solution for the bars that the ladder hooks onto, and I like that as well.

    • Michael Janzen says:

      It takes time, there is so much there. I’m still finding new tricks. So would SketchUp tutorial videos help or do you think there is plenty of that out there already?

      • Lola says:

        Not sure. I haven’t used SketchUp for a while now. When I would click and drag it just seems like things wouldn’t happen like they should and I would get frustrated trying to fix what did happen that shouldn’t.

      • MIKE Z says:

        I think a tutorial that highlights the shortcuts you actually need to design a tiny house and ignores those unrelated would be helpful as well as a “how to” on correcting mistakes or undo which isn’t as easy to figure out as it should be IMO.

      • Teri Foster says:

        YES, Michael!! Like Lola, I tried and tried with SketchUp and finally just gave up. I was really good with my designs on graph paper, and found this http://urbanbarn.icovia.com/icovia.aspx to make some great floor plans. And now my architect/builder is creating professional plans for our build, but I’d still love to see my little house in 3D mode. If you had tutorials I’d give it another try!

  3. JS_ID says:

    The tiny home movement has so many options and places to start with. Do you get a bare trailer, do you get a “shed”, do you get a container, do you stick build it from the ground up like any other home? My biggest issue has been – I don’t like “shed converted to tiny home” and I don’t like the idea of stick building, nor am I interested in having a house on permanent wheels. So I went with the idea of a container. 20ft seems to fit my needs, except for figuring out where to situate toilet and shower, do you put it at one end or the other, do you put it in the middle and then build around it? If you do build it at one end do you build it where the big swing doors are and cut another door hole? With a door hole, you can’t just go back to being a shipping container…. Do I buy a 40ft container so I can just stretch out the bathroom situation? What do I do with the rest of the “overkill” on space. Can I even put a 40 foot trailer in my driveway so I can work on it?

  4. Beth says:

    Provide information for small houses, too, and not just micro Tiny Homes. I want a ~450 sq ft “just right house, ” and it can be difficult finding info, ideas, etc, on homes not on wheels, and larger than ~250 sq ft. I have yet to see any information on making a tiny house wheelchair accessible. Just because my legs don’t work correctly doesn’t mean I want a McMansion!

    My other problem is that I get bogged down in specifics. My brain is very literal and math oriented. I get caught up in things like: how big is a standard twin bed? How much space do I need to allot for a walk/roll in shower? How can I plan now for a wheelchair ramp instead of stairs?

    Thank you for your consideration.

  5. Grant says:

    My biggest problem is after already building a 428 sqft house I now want to go smaller. Just got to find another piece of land and sell this one.

  6. Jacinda says:

    Trying to work enough storage in. I have a few things like my spinning wheel and my rocking chair I won’t part with.

  7. ROY D KING says:

    I believe that trying to pin down all design aspects to fit our needs at this time is my Achilles heel. It prevents us from opening up to more flexible storage and space usage that will allow us to live well as your needs change. It seems there is no ideal design as our needs change within any given stage of life.

  8. Bianca says:

    I’ve struggled with ceiling heights. I can’t figure out just how much height I have to work with once the frame in on the trailer. I definitely want a loft, but want to be able to sit on my bed and not be hunched over. Also, I need stairs as I have bad ankles and there are times that I would not be able to climb a ladder. Closet space is important, we don’t have many clothes, but still figuring out how to fit what we do have. The biggest issue for me is that we have 4 medium dogs. Due to some anxiety, health issues, and other special needs, there are times that all 4 need to be crated. And though it’s rare, it does happen and I want to be prepared. How do I build in the crates and make it work? Also, my husband & I work from home so we need enough space for laptops when in use and a way to put them away so it looks nice. Lastly, designing of grid with solar panels and how to store the batteries and a water tank and rain gathered water. I’m stuck on configuring those in. Oh…and how to build attachments to the house. Such as a pull down deck or awning. And if there was a way to add in the weight of things that would be helpful… even if it’s only a “guesstimate”.

  9. Joe Sortman says:

    I really want to design a tiny house with a downstairs bedroom where 2 (no longer young) people can get in and out of a queen bed without climbing over the other one. Lofts are great for younger people and Murphy beds would be a great idea but it needs to fold down leaving room on either side. Perhaps an under loft? Still need room for a real kitchen and bathroom as well…

  10. Don Woods says:

    A couple of things:

    – Designing the home so that the living room area doesn’t seem like an afterthought (many tiny homes have decent kitchens but usually at the expense of a comfortable reasonable living room area).

    – Downstairs sleeping area for older tiny house dwellers who can’t use or don’t want to use a loft space for sleeping.

  11. Jay says:

    After having built one Tiny on foundation with little to no planning (a position I see a lot of people in), I think one of the big challenges is getting things to fit properly. Stressing that you need to commit to appliances and fixtures so that you can plan around them would be crucial. We built a 240sf building that was intended for storage. In the middle of the build, we decided to make it a residence. Like Tinies on trailers, the size was set and then we proceeded to fill it out. With our current Tiny project (2nd on the same 12 ac property) I’m taking the approach of designing fuctionality around real appliances, fixtures, and furniture and letting that define the outer dimensions of the walls. Picking exact pieces also allows you to plan properly for electrical outlets if needed and bracing and extra floor support. Sketchup does a pretty good job of providing all of the tools. I agree that a full walk-through of a house build tutorial would be awesome. Tools to help plan electrical runs and loads as well as plumbing routes would be great. Hints and guides sections – balance your weight properly if building on wheels, account for interior finish (sheet rock, paneling, siding, etc) and exterior clad (siding, Hardiboard, etc) when figuring wall thicknesses. Stud placement for attaching light fixtures and outlets. Use of Borate treated wood. Strap down attachment points and considerations. Effective placement of HVAC equipment including air conditioner, heater, and HRV units. A “Don’t make these mistakes” section as well as a “Must Do” section. You can either offer a pile of “Architech planned/approved” plans or you can teach people the 100s of things that have to be taken into account when building a house. Big Challenge, Michael!

  12. rktrixy Ruth Vallejos says:

    A small problem: Pop-outs. How do you make them – what are the pros & cons? One of our bigger problems is we are big people. I don’t want a space where I feel as if I’m not accommodated. I’m thinking a pop-out is the best way to make that happen – I mean we would like to be able to have a king sized bed. And we don’t want to crawl over the bed to get into bed. (Short rant: I do not understand the beds for two with a side approach. This means one person has to crawl over the other to get up to use the restroom. OK for a weekend, maybe, a fun source of bruises and giggles. Every day? Boy – would that get old.)

    The biggest problem: zoning and planning. It would be great to have a collection of information on the cities and counties where parking and extended living is allowed. If a website exists, that would be great to know. I have trouble even getting excited about the concept as long as “where do I park it?” remains a mystery.

    • Rachel says:

      Omg yes, I second pop-outs! I know there’s information on them out there, but I rarely see anyone talking about them outside of “they can add depth and storage etc etc..”. No actual construction tips!

    • K. says:

      Cook County, Minnesota, is quite open to full-time tiny house living on your own property. There are four tiny homes there right now, I was told. And it’s an unbelievably beautiful area in addition. Right on Lake Superior.

  13. Patti Griffin says:

    I I am in my mid-60s. I have a 26 foot tiny home with a sleeping loft. I wanting to design my own tiny house will the downstairs bedroom. I do not want to use the living room area / couch as my bed. The other thing would be having as much storage as possible. But since I have already downsized to a tiny home once this would not be as difficult to pare down as it was before. I just want to design something that has all the elements that I have now in addition to putting the bed downstairs. I love my upstairs loft but as I age it’s going to be more and more difficult for me to get up there. Additionally, the stairs going up to my sleeping loft were built by an individual not a manufacturer and they’re a little bit wonky. Perhaps if I had different stairs plus a handrail they wouldn’t be as difficult to maneuver. But I think as I age a downstairs sleepng area is better.

  14. Cindy says:

    I am in my 60’s also and want a small home that is all on one level as I have disabilities. Can’t wait to see your finished product

  15. Michael Inman says:

    My biggest struggle was (and still is) getting enough together to buy the trailer! I can then buy lumber each month till I can start the build! I want a 14-16 foot trailer but can’t seem to get enough together without something eating it away like water heater going out, or the plumbing freezing and breaking or the well burning out, it seems like when I get a few hundred dollars saved out something else breaks down. I will be so glad when I get the trailer!

  16. Megan says:

    My answer to your question is easy. The challenge for me has been getting the city of Sebastopol to accept a tiny house as a legitimate dwelling. My challenge is figuring out how to bend the traditional housing ordinances, codes to fit a tiny house. The biggest challenge I see is the foundation requirement. How do you efficiently get a THOW onto a foundation. I see very little discussion about this. With the devastating wildfires of California last year, there is such an urgent need for affordable housing, more than ever. Another issue, lot sizes and allowing more than one Accessory Dwelling Unit on residential properties. It is time to: make smaller parcel sizes, to standardize the process and finally to allow for Pocket Neighborhoods!

    • Megan says:

      Oh and I wanted to add to my previous post; Also Sketchup has a pretty steep learning curve if you aren’t taught formally. You can get lost in the process of googling how to do something. It can be frustrating.

  17. Annette says:

    I would like to be able to better visualize how much space I actually have in my design. On paper, it looks like enough space for everything, but is it comfortable to move through? I’ve made a paper 3D model for the shell and placed flat paper pieces for furniture/appliance placement, but I’m unsure if it’s realistic. I would like some ideas on how to make sure that it all fits together with room for me to move about.

    • Dorothy says:

      Hello Annette and everyone else who struggles with Sketchup, I highly recommend finding a free download of SweetHome3d. I love the ease of using this program. I initially planned to use Sketchup but once I discovered that I couldn’t download the software and that I’d have to do everything through an online portal, I went looking for an alternative. SweetHome3d is very easy to use. It makes designing the tiny a lot of fun.

  18. Rachel says:

    I’ve gotten to the point in my research/design where I understand all of the general concepts and techniques, can easily use SketchUp to make my design, and know exactly how I want to live in my house/what I want it to do for me. I’m also making my SketchUp model as accurate as possible so that I can use it as a template for my materials list as well as all of my measurements. However, since I’ve designed everything from scratch, my questions are so specific and technical that it’s hard to find answers that apply to my situation! It takes 3x as long to do so as opposed to the general questions a lot of people seem to have. So it’s just really frustrating and I’m not sure how to get around it other than to hire an actual consultant to become as intimately familiar with my design as I am.

    The other issue is that I follow a lot of different builders, building science experts, and manufacturers, so I’m constantly being introduced new and improved products or executions to improve my build. I know at some point I’m just going to have to decide on a final materials list and buy everything, but while I’m waiting to be able to build, adding all of these changes sometimes means that my entire SketchUp model (or a large portion of it) needs to be redone entirely. I don’t necessarily mind the extra hours in SketchUp, but some of the products I find are pretty well established and if only I had heard about them earlier it would have saved me the trouble of redoing my model so often!

    I just really wish there was a database of recommended/suggested products for building tiny houses. Not just the big name brands that everyone knows, but innovative products/applications too, whether they’re high-tech/low-tech or high-end/low-end; I feel like there’s so much out there that would work great for tiny houses if only people knew about it. For example, Corbett and Grace Lunsford (The Tiny Lab) are the only builders I’ve seen who used as many high-tech home-performance-based products as they did. I didn’t even think beyond smoke and CO detectors before them! But imagine a database where them and all the other tiny house builders/owners were invited to add their own personal recommended products to the site, and then describe how/why they work for their specific application(so people don’t just try and apply situation-specific products inappropriately). Idk…I’m rambling now, but that’s my tiny house community pipe dream that I’m too busy to do myself. lol

    • Dorothy says:

      Rachel – This is a great idea – “a database of recommended/suggested products for building tiny houses.” I totally second this suggestion.

  19. Holly K says:

    Like many others, I absolutely must have a “downstairs” bedroom. Under bed storage with hydraulic lift. One thing I know is an issue for a lot of folks but have never seen discussed is the need to get up during the night to go to the bathroom. So my tiny house needs the bathroom next to the bedroom. Toilet, shower, small sink. The bedroom must have a clothes closet. As a single person, a double vs a queen bed would work. I could have one or two lofts for storage, and want stairs that slide out when needed, but slide back to make floor space most of the time. As far as the kitchen area, a two burner cooktop, microwave, and toaster oven, along with sink, fridge, and storage. Would prefer a real couch vs built in. Built in bookshelves, maybe one big window to look out, with others high to allow more wall space for storage and art. Fold down table for dining , computer work, and crafts. Outdoor space with covered carport that extends to house because where I live it rains a lot and I hate getting drenched between the car and the house. Guess you can tell I’ve put a lot of thought into this!

  20. Teresa says:

    I have been waffling between a tiny on wheels and a shipping container home because 1. I just had my 63rd birthday, and can’t climb into a loft for many more years. And 2. I want a full size bathroom and bedroom. Fitting that into a tiny on wheels seems like it would be too much for me to tow.

    I’ve designed exactly what I want, but will need to take some classes for things like welding and electric. My income is tiny, so my biggest problem is money to get what I want. I’m learning to build cabinets, and know something about plumbing. I intend to use pex? Plumbing products. I also am learning about solar and more.

    I can tell you that I know more about toilets than I ever wanted to know.

    My next research project is tiny furniture that is multipurpose!

  21. Jan P says:

    I am building an 87 sq. ft house now. My problem is getting enough kitchen counter space and storage space in that small a structure. (8×8 with a 3×7 bump-out for the sofa/bed)

    • Dorothy says:

      Hello Jan, I had an idea recently that might be useful to your set up. You know how most tiny houses have tables that fold down or the IKEA Norden table that has two sides that fold up or down? In my tiny design, I have kitchen counters on both sides of the house. I have enough counter space. However, if I had to shrink up the length of the house, I was wondering how not to loose kitchen counter space. So, if I couldn’t have enough counter space length wise, I’d make the counter space go across the width of the house by adding two fold up tables, one on either side of the kitchen counters and have those two tables meet up in the middle. This way, a person could choose to use none or one or two fold up tables depending on the need in the moment. I hope I explained this well enough to make sense. Hope this helps.

  22. Heidi says:

    My family and I currently live in a small home about 656 square feet. There are days when I think what are we doing with all this stuff? Then there are days when I realize we have downsized all we can for the moment. I have one book shelf where I keep files for stuff that I can’t digitize and tons of photos that I started to digitize and then the program I was using became obsolete as did the scanner and I can’t even get to the files I spent 6 months creating….thank goodness I didn’t toss the photos. Talk about discouraging! Then there is my family to consider. There are just three of us and four dogs (small of course!) but they really don’t want to go any smaller. I get it and I’m ok with that. This place is pretty small at times but we love it here.

    So, I gave up on full time living tiny and decided to go for vacation home tiny! So far, that hasn’t worked either. Finding affordable materials that I can work with has been a struggle. Every contact I have made through Craigslist has been a total scam. Tiny homes are so popular now that everyone with a rusted old trailer that doesn’t look like it could hold a hundred pounds wants thousands for it. So, that’s also part of the struggle, sourcing affordable materials for the job. I love reading the blogs and finding out how other people did it. Its all totally amazing and inspiring. Some day I hope to write my own story about how I made it happen.

  23. Sophie says:

    I agree with the previous post about interior height once the house is on the trailer. I only design my “dream” tiny house as a hobby – I love the challenge of thinking what my absolute minimum needs would be and seeing how small of a trailer I could fit all of them onto. I use graph paper down to the scale of one square per inch because I can at least get accurate information on furniture/appliance sizes when I do my drawings, but there are specific tiny house information that just isn’t out there, such as interior height and building out over the tongue. Even with a drop axle trailer, what would be my base floor height – 2′? 2’3″? What is the ratio of width to depth on a trailer tongue bump out – if you wanted it to be 5′ wide, how far could it project onto the tongue without it causing trailer steering issues? When you want to make every inch count, it’s frustrating that this information isn’t out there.

  24. Dee says:

    My problem is with hubby’s snoring How could I escape that in a tiny house?
    Our bedroom would have to be on the bottom level. If we had a loft, it would be for storage, so not a sleeping option.

    • Jay says:

      I know of numerous couples that don’t sleep in the same room for that and several other reasons. Temperature control being another major stumbling block. One likes it hot, the other cold. Hang in there! Maybe surgery for his snoring would be a better investment. lol Maybe if you move into a Tiny, you could afford the surgery for his snoring. I see lots of models that have separate sleeping quarters. You’re not alone!

  25. Dee says:

    We live in an average sized house at the moment. I can just go to the other end of the house & it’s much quieter.
    As silly as it sounds to most people, this is the only thing putting us off

    • Michael Janzen says:

      My first thought would be to have sleeping space at both ends and the bathroom and kitchen in the center. At least one side would need to be a flexible space with a convertible bed of some kind. Doors on each side of the kitchen should also help the other sleep. Just a thought.

  26. Dorothy says:

    I have designed numerous THOW models utilizing SweetHome3d. It’s lots of fun to configure the inside of the house to meet my needs and desires. My biggest questions have to do with how to design the outside of the house. I’m uncertain about the exterior materials and the color scheme. I want more than just a boxy look but don’t want such a fancy design that the costs increase by thousands. Do I use straight, plain cedar? Do I add color? Where and how much? Do I use SIPs (Structurally Insulated Panels) for the walls rather than cedar? Are SIPs safe or are do they contain a ton of toxic chemicals? Are they stronger than and lighter than cedar? The other main questions I have are: Where do the fresh water and grey water tanks go? After watching hundreds of THOW video tours, I can say that almost nobody discusses this. Maybe I just need to find some detailed how to build videos. Thanks for your time and work on Tiny House Design!

  27. Robert says:

    Templates. I’ve seen them but now I can’t find them. I’ve been trying to lay out and draw what I want. I purchased three sets of drawings and now I’m using them to design my THOW. Templates would be a nice tool too speed up duplicate drawing s. Haven’t got sketch up yet.

  28. Zina says:

    As I work from home, trying to fit a home office with a door into our design has been a struggle. We are looking at goosenecks since we don’t want a loft bedroom but also need lots of storage and kitchen space as we preserve much of the food we grow.

  29. Kari says:

    Hi Michael! U r terrific! I am a big fan. My biggest problem w/designing our tiny is how to fit two adults, one kiddo & several small pets into a tiny? We need a ground floor bedroom for us & a loft for the kiddo. Then pet space & crafting space for my YurtGrrl Business! And I really need a tub to soak my bones…also Husband needs to work from home often as well. Yikes! I think mainly it’s just the overwhelm of how do I fit it all? Thanks again! Kari YurtGrrl Cooper

  30. Jonell Loeffler says:

    I am absolutely fascinated with small house design. I love floor plans and study them a lot while dreaming of my own small, efficient house. My problem is that as I am aging, I can’t have areas as small as most of these tiny houses any more because of health issures and severe arthritis etc. and I also need a fairly large kitchen as I hope to sell baked goods when I retire from my job or at least blog about food and crafts. Therefore a small house plan must include areas for my cooking and crafts. I am a firm believer that we need to make small, efficient spaces to live in and to help our planet so as not to waste our limited resources and to be so financially in debt.

  31. Linda says:

    I think multi purpose and folding furniture are the way to go for a tiny home. The “tiny home products site” is definitely a great idea! I read and research a lot and often come across products that make me go “ah ha!” I love the removable bathtubs, murphy beds (I do not want to climb the ladder to bed or to bathroom at night…fold away desks that can double as an eating table. I’m an artist and a business consultant so storage and working space are paramount, but I also love to cook so a decent kitchen with work and storage space is also important. Finally, I also like to build stuff and would be hard pressed to give up my power tools, so a shelter of some sort outside would be nice. I think the fellow who said you need to determine your lifestyle and then build around that, has the right idea. To that end, I’ve recently downsized from 2100 sq ft to 623 sq ft, and still working on the purge. ☺

  32. Norma says:

    I have been slowly converting an old 8×20 loafing (3 sided) barn into a tiny house. I am 65 and money is an issue, so I have been going slowly and making purchases as I go. I have done over 90% of the work myself and have enjoyed every minute (except for the hammered thumbs…lol) I made my own bed frame (twin size) from an old waterbed that I used to have and will be attaching the box springs to the frame with hinges so I can store bedding and misc underneath the bed. I am also re-purposing a solid wood entertainment center as part of my kitchen cabinetry. The barn/house is open floor as I decided on a composting outhouse/solar shower to save room on the inside. my biggest problem is going to be figuring out where to put/store all my knitting and sewing supplies. This building has a slant roof with a 2′ difference in height from front wall to back. Trying to figure out if I could build shelving up there for yarn storage maybe?

  33. Josh Hawthorne says:

    Zoning and bylaws give me headaches. We live in a region of patchwork municipalities, each with different flavours of “you can’t park that here”, and finding someone in the various city halls who knows anything about tiny homes is…challenging.

  34. Brenda Ray says:

    Biggest struggle for designing my tiny house is the learning curve for the software. You videos are great. I want to take the course, when available.

  35. Beth says:

    My comments are nothing new, but I’ll add them here for other single women with a dream to build a tiny house. I have little construction experience and understand that there’s lots I don’t know. I do believe I have a high aptitude and interest in the area, but it is intimidating. You don’t know what you don’t know! When I talk to friends about my idea they think I’m crazy. Fortunately, I’m used to being called crazy. I don’t love it, but I know that it’s possible to get both knowledge and experience at something new and I’m not afraid to try. With this in mind, I’m excited to now have recently purchased your plans for several new homes. One is very similar to my concept, so once I learn how to use the program, I think I can make the alterations needed. At least I’m willing to try. I also am taking an online building course and have earmarked a couple workshops I want to take to get more practical experience.
    The next hurdle is a place to put the tiny house. Unfortunately, I won’t be able to build or live on my family’s farm, which I had desired. My brothers own the land and won’t sell me a small piece. It means I’ll have to find another location. Wish me luck in this area.

  36. Julee Mason says:

    I would like to see more plans for tiny houses on foundations. I am not so much into the tiny houses on trailers as we are not really the RV traveling type nor are we fans of the long but extremely narrow spaces that they offer. I would prefer a more boxy, for lack of a better term, floor plan. I have actually come up with my own design for a square, small rather than tiny, house with a loft & full stairs (since we’re not getting any younger, lol). My uncle was an architect/engineer and it was something that interested me so he showed me how to do architectural drawings, read plans, etc. I am not a professional, as it is just a hobby for me. I like to create drawings of houses that I get ideas for. I have dozens of drawings I’ve done over the years. My latest, of course, are small, not tiny, houses. My biggest challenge is working in a place for the water heater, air handler unit, & washer & dryer hook-ups. Ideally, I would like to have a small room for these items but would consider a closet for the water heater & air handler unit & an alcove or small room for the washer & dryer. I want the home to be fully functional & free standing, meaning only that despite it’s size, it would be just like any other home. Also,nI a very interested in the SketchUp program to do my drawings in but I have always hand-drawn all my houses & the program is a bit intimidating to me so I would be very interested in your eCourse on how to use it!

    • Beth says:

      I agree! I’d also like more tiny house plans NOT on trailers. I’d initially been excited by them, but now think I’d be unlikely to move a house.

  37. Jules says:

    My biggest struggle with designing my tiny house is dreading the learning curve of Sketchup and getting the ‘foundation’ of the drawings started properly.

  38. Patricia says:

    I know some basic things I like. But to start off — how should the weight be distributed on the trailer. The kitchen/bath area have so much more weight than the living/eating area.

  39. Bill says:

    I’m a classicist and I am planning a traditional look. I prefer sleeping space on lower level and limiting lofts to storage. I am studying murphy bed arrangements but queen size is a bit much in a narrow space. The gambrel roof idea appeals to me – it increases the interior volume without looking like a box. The more windows the better and skylights are a must. Can I use sliding glass doors for the main entrance?

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