It’s simple really.  I wanted something to do with my summer besides work, but I also wanted something that would be beneficial to me in the long run.  I had been researching tiny houses for a long time, but this was the first time in almost 2 years that I would be at home for an extended period of time for the summer.  I had the money, most of the know-how, and an awesome dad to help me with the construction and acquisition of materials so I figured I would build a tiny house to hopefully live in upon graduation from college.

I am going into the construction industry and could end up working at jobs anywhere in the country.  Because of this, I needed a house that was mobile, otherwise I would be wasting money on rent each month.  The tiny house would be an investment for me when it is all said and done.  I would be able to save money by living in it, but if I were ever to grow tired of living in such a small space, I could either sell it, or use it as a lake house.

Another reason I set out on this build was because I am graduating this year, and will then be off into the world away from my family and friends.  This was realistically the last summer I would have at home, if I get a job as I am hoping I will.  To be able to work so closely with my dad throughout the entire build has really meant a lot to me.  He also has amazing attention to detail so I know the house will be as perfect as it can be.

I guess to sum it up, I am a young guy hoping to change the world in a tiny way.  This may not be the most sought out solution to problems, but I should be able to save money upon completion, pay off my student loans, and have a quality built place to live when I graduate from school.


13 Responses to About

  1. Laura says:

    Hi Kai,
    I just found your blog because of a story that ran at the Tiny House blog. I have read through and enjoyed it. I had a hard time finding where to comment because you have disabled the comments section somehow on the individual stories.
    I am also in the process of building a tiny house (on land not on wheels). I would like to make this my permanent home but time will tell.
    My blog, if you are interested, or have time, is tinyhouseontario.wordpress.com
    Good luck with your build and also with school,
    in the spirit of kindred concepts,

  2. I also just found your blog from The Tiny House Blog – and my name is also Laura. I am building a tiny house as well and I think it is great to see all these tiny homes being built all across the country. And thanks so much for the detailed blog of the construction. You can check out my tiny house blog at http://www.120squarefeet.blogspot.com but also check out my Tiny House Networking Community on facebook: Think Big, Build Small. It is a place for folks like us to talk about what we’ve built and share ideas and inspirations.

  3. kmaibusch says:

    Thanks for all the well wishes. I’ve actually been on the 120squarefeet bloog before. Great work you’re doing so far.

    I just checked out the ontario bog as well. Seems like everyone is doing excellent work on their tiny houses!

  4. ian says:

    Kie, The house looks nice. I was wondering how one goes about finding demo houses before they are being torn down?

    • kmaibusch says:

      In my area there is a company that advertises the demolition sales and leads the auctions through the houses that are being torn down. I do not know if this is available in all areas, but working out of the Chicagoland area, the company I go through has the following website: http://www.demo-pro.com

      I’m sure if you look online you should be able to find some sort of demolition sale company in your area. Also, look for Habitat for Humanity resale stores. They are called Restore and have building materials that were not used on Habitat houses. I personally was able to get all my windows, including the skylight there for a fraction of what they would have otherwise cost buying them new.

  5. Aaron Calhoun says:

    Hey Kie. it seems like we have similar life paths and are about the same age. I am 22. I have been saving up money to build my own tiny house. I want to work as a Technical Construction worker in the theater. and like you I will be moving around from theater to theater and need mobility. so I came to the same conclusion as you: TINY HOUSE! I feel like I am kinda in-experienced though. I am saving up to 21,000 dollars to do it right and really nicely but I have a sneaking suspicion that I will only need 11 or maybe 12 thousand dollars. how much did your house cost you? if that is too personal of a question feel free to refrain from asking. what do you think of Jay Shaffers designs? He has been a really big influence on me because my dad knows him and I know him a little bit. also what sort of truck or car do you have to pull your house around? I would love to keep in touch. shoot me an email.

    • kmaibusch says:

      Hey Aaron. I’m still building my house, but at the moment only have about $8000 into it. I was able to get a great deal on the trailer though so that probably skews the cost a bit.

      As per Jay Shafer’s designs, I would admit that his designs probably offer the most functionality and storage, but I can’t say that I was directly influenced by him or anything like that. I’ve designed my house myself, and while I may not have maximized the storage space as well as he would have, I think that my house is very fitting for me and will work well for me. One thing I made sure of with my house was having headroom under the loft because I am a tall person.

      I have experience with design and architecture as it is, so it wasn’t difficult for me to make my own drawings for a general understanding of how I wanted the house laid out. From there I would make field changes as needed.

      I have a Chevy Silverado 1500 to tow my house. Put your email address in a comment and I’ll answer any other questions you may have. Good luck with your house!

  6. Gracie K. says:

    Hello, Kie.
    I’m a nineteen-year-old planning on going into architecture or civil engineering. Though I’ve been dreaming about– and designing– tiny houses for years, I’d never heard of someone my age building one. That’s really ballsy. I always assumed that when I built mine, I would be at least 30. Thanks for inspiring me to try to achieve my dreams while I’m young.
    Best of luck, and please keep updating your blog!

    • kmaibusch says:

      Thanks Gracie, and good luck with your tiny house! I was more fortunate than most my age because I have been saving my money for years, so I actually had some sort of budget with which to build my house.

      I’d love to see some of your designs if you are willing to share them.

  7. Freezin in the 'Sconnie' says:

    It is the memories that will last. I built a friends place during the summer of 1974. We called it a “truller with no wheels.” Good luck. On Wisconsin!

  8. I LOVE this comment thread because it turns out WAY more people my age are building tiny houses from scratch than I had thought! I’m 21 and have been developing my plan for building a tiny house for years and now I’ve finally started my first tiny house project! I am building my house out of all recycled/reused/ or sustainably produced materials and it will be completely off-the-grid. I love that Tiny Houses are accessible to almost anyone. Also, I love the Restore – it’s a great resource for used building materials and appliances and everything else.
    Check out my own tiny house project (I’m building mine out of a vintage camper!)
    I wish there was a way we could have some sort of network for young (college and not college) kids building their own tiny houses…it seems like we could all learn a LOT from each other. It’s also cool to know that other people are working on their tiny houses on a college kid’s budget – I’m trying to use as many free salvaged materials as possible. Affordable is really important.

    I’d love to feature you on my blog, Kie, so drop me a line:

  9. Hi Kie, I just found your Blog…been reading from the beginning, but I haven’t seen anything on the size of your home, can you please post it…thanks, everything looks good…please keep your post coming !

    • kmaibusch says:

      It measures 8’x16′ on the first floor, with the loft extending 4′ past the end of the rear wall and extending 8′ into the living space. This makes the loft 8’x12′ for a total living space of 224 square feet.

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