"the most important check you will write"
As with any item you purchase that is designed specifically to meet your needs or budget...such as a car...the price is as variable as peoples tastes. What you feel is most important in your Tiny Home may not be what someone else see's as being a necessity in theirs. What we do here at T.H.E.K is to offer "helpful guidelines" as to what you can expect to pay for general options or designs, that come in our 3 different off-the grid models, 3 shell packages and 1 grid tied package. Your choice of options is only limited by your budget and the square footage of your Tiny Home trailer.
For example, if you feel that cooking is the most important thing we need to address in the design of your Tiny Home, then a full size gas stove may be an option you need to seriously consider. Likewise, if your 6' 4" tall, a larger shower may be a really good place to splurge.
T.H.E.K includes everything needed to get you actually living off- the-grid not just surviving with sub-par discount PV system.
Of coarse should you want to upgrade any of our model packages...feel free. We can add or subtract any feature you wish. That is the beauty of buying a T.H that is built to your needs, and not just some random show house that you settle on just because.... We hold no inventory...All our Tiny Homes are built to our customers specific needs.
We don't believe in building a generic T.H model in hopes that it will be what you're looking for or worse, one that we talk you into buying simply because your in a rush to get started Living Tiny.
In order for us to be successful, it requires our customers to be aware that when making a large purchase such as a Tiny Home, you need to be mindful of your wants versus your needs. We all want a 70'' flat screen, but do we really need it? Well, if enjoying a great movie is the only way you can relax then maybe the answer is yes. It is not for us at T.H.E.K to convince you of your needs, we can only help to guide you ( to the best of our ability) based on what you tell us you expect or need to get out of your new Tiny Home. Our goal is to ensure that the propane tanks are big enough for that full size stove you want or that you have enough PV panels and batteries to support that 70in flat screen that you just cant live without.
T.H.E.K spent some time coming up with a "wish list" if you will, that will help us to design and guide you into a Tiny House with only the options that you need. It seems simple enough, but when you choose to go off-the-grid, you are choosing a life style that becomes very dependent on the other choices you have or will make. An example...choosing a 70in T.V means more then just making sure there is enough wall space to hang it, it means that we may need to upgrade your solar power system. Bottom line is that one change that seems simple enough in reality may require a multitude of other changes to occur...Those seen and unseen. Here at T.H.E.K we inform you of those changes and adjust them before your Tiny Home leaves our shop. So, when the game goes long...You can be confident in the fact that we have installed a power system that can handle a T.V that size...And you don't miss the final 2 min. of the big game.
This may sound easy enough, but the old saying " the customer is always right" doesn't really apply to such a large purchase that offers an ocean of endless options and up-grades. Our houses may be Tiny but we face the same real challenges that you would in designing and powering a full size home. The fact is that fitting a kitchen and all its appliances into a 2000sqft house is easy compared to fiting one into a Tiny Home, that requires all the appliances to be not only smaller, but more efficient....Which really means....It costs more.
Keep in mind, the most expensive areas of a home are the kitchen and bath, likewise most of drain to a power system comes from the kitchen and bath. Your Tiny home, although several hundred square feet smaller then an average size home, retains all the areas that require the biggest expense and need for efficient power use....The kitchen and bath.
Think losing power wont happen to you? Think again...Choosing to go off grid is one thing..Planning properly for it is another...But just as your local "Power Utilities" can't guarantee 24/7 power, neither can a PV solar system. For those truly concerned, we would suggest investing in a larger PV system or consider adding a gas generator for back up.
Oh...You didn't think you would need one? The only thing any power source, be it grid tied or solar, can guarantee, is that there will be down times with no power. Going off-the-grid is an acknowledgement that you understand this fact and believe it is worth it to reduce your carbon footprint. Which may mean going to work with wet hair every once in awhile because there was no power to run your hair dryer at 6am after a solid week of heavy rain with no sun.
What does going off-the-grid even mean? It means you are the provider of all your utilities, and like any utility, the goal is to spend just enough money to make sure your hair dryer works in the morning, but not too much so that you end up having an over sized system providing you with more power then you could ever really use. It is a delicate balancing act of exact mathematical equations mixed with the unpredictable needs and wants of human nature. For example: Did you just get a new X-Box for Christmas? Did you plan on that when you designed your PV system 3 years ago? This is why most sellers of PV systems oversell you on a large system. Yet going Tiny means keeping your usage at a steady constant, similar to your wardrobe, if you buy a new shirt, you need to donate an old shirt to make room...this is Tiny Living 101.
The Reality...Most of us don't know what we use or how much of it we use. Going off-the-grid means that leaving just 1 light on all day while your at work could effect your available back-up power the next morning by not having enough energy to brew you're morning coffee. That exterior light by the door....Not only does it attract bugs, but it draws power and for what? Most cars nowadays have delay lights, so before they go off, make it your goal to get out of the car and into your T.H before that happens.
Seem unrealistic? An exaggeration maybe? You better think again....And a little harder this time.
Ever been to a restaurant and left food on your plate...Then told people how "great" that restaurant was because they gave you so much for so little? That is not thinking Tiny. You should be thinking " that was really delicious but it's a bit wasteful, they give you to much"....That is T.H thinking.
Im not judging you..that is for you to do. My point is that Living Tiny means re-thinking all the things that you take for granted. Like if you're a heavy gamer but you choose our base PV system. You will need to work a little harder to remember to not only turn off your games and computers but to charge them during the energy producing hours of the day and not rely on them being charged over night while you sleep. Every hum you hear in your house right now, be it the fridge running behind you, our your direc T.V DVR box in front of you, is pulling energy to some degree. I can go to bed at 9p.m. at night and walk more then 25 steps to my bedroom with no lights on because I have no less then 12 electric items glowing in the dark, lighting my way. Whether it's my internet router, my signal booster for my I-phone, my electric toothbrush (which makes everything in the bathroom a scary green color at night...just sayin) or even my lighted wall switch to help me find it on the wall in the dead of night. All these things need to be powered down when not be used...Thats my friends....Is living Tiny.
My long winded point is, before you consider going Tiny...Consider this...You will have to learn to unplug (or have a custom on-off switch installed) to turn off these silent power sources that draw all night long while you sleep. Its true, some draw more then others and some don't draw anything at all...But think of all that equipment as "your customers"...They all are demanding power from you, and you only have so much power to give out, especially in the winter months, when your daily draw is even less. As the "owner" of your own private power source, it would make sense not to allow for any waste....Tomorrow may not turn out as sunny as today was.
Does this frighten you?
Well, it shouldn't, because unless you are in medical need of a device that runs on energy, then you too can join the Tiny Home revolution. Think of it as "if you are gaming 14 hrs a day" then you really need to get outside anyway. Going Tiny reconnects you to the free things in life that require no energy like hiking, biking, swimming, going to see Mom more often or being able to save up enough to fly to see her (since you don't have high utility bills any longer). Going Tiny is not only do-able, its probably what has been missing in your life. All we ask is that you don't jump in blindly.
Try tiny steps...like going camping ( if you camp regularly then this tip isn't for you...teachers pet)
Keep a journal of how much of your home you use right now and for what purpose. Does your bed have 20 pillows on it and you need 2 hope chests to put them all in every night? Does your 3rd bedroom house your workout equipment? Was putting it together the most exercise you got from it? When you go up to the second floor, do you use the whole 36" to 42" wide step or just the middle part that your foot lands on?
If you are honest with yourself, you will more then likely realize that you don't use most of you're existing home, and that your "collections" all though Im sure are great, could really be paired down to just one or two favorites. As for the exercise stuff...well at least you wont feel bad any more after you sell them, since walking past the room they were in wasn't good for your self esteem anyway.
As for those steps....most houses have about 12 ( give or take dependingon the height of the cieling) and most of us use only roughly 4" of it at any given time..
Good News. Our stairs offer only roughly 5 to 8 steps and they are 13" to 24" wide. We just build the part you would use, not the part that collects the dust bunnies.
With my remodeling/design business, I have learned in my career as a (full size) home builder since 1986, that it's not my job to just save you money....But rather to help you use your budget more effectively and to give you the most bang for your buck. This couldn't be more true then for the design and building of a T.H.
Its a part of my job I take great pride in....Don't sell you anything you don't need, but at the same time, not to allow you to skimp on purchasing something that I know you may need in the not so distant future, to ensure your purchase was a successful one. Just selling you a Tiny Home is not my goal...My goal is to sell you a Tiny Home that speaks to your needs, style and budget equally.
This may sound harsh to some.... And like a breath of fresh air to others, especially those who have already made large purchases in their lives only to realize they over bought..or worse..under bought. (And for all of you who are playing the drinking game where you take a drink every time I say "T.H."....please but your car keys in the bowl). For the rest of you, I promise you we will work together to insure that we put you in just the right Tiny Home that fits your budget and your needs.
We here at T.H.E.K will due our due diligence to ensure that when you step into your new Tiny Home, that you will instantly see how well it is suited to your needs, while still remaining within the realistic budget set forth.
This is a two part formula however. In order for this to happen, you need to be honest with yourself and clear with us as to what your needs are or will be. (For example …If you plan to have 2 kids in the next year or so, maybe not opting for the second loft is a bad choice, since it leaves you with very few options for sleeping space in the future.) We have talked to many people (through email) and found that the vast majority of those who were unhappy with their Tiny Home, admitted that they jumped into it and got caught up in the excitement of it all. It was this reason they feel that living Tiny didn't work for them. Whether it was not pairing down ahead of time in their "regular" life before going tiny or that it was just more of a "need to do something good for the 'Aina" then a true calling to regain control their life back by stepping out of the "rat-race" for whatever reason, it just didn't work out.
Not sure if this would happen to you?
If you have kept an eye on the Tiny Homes that are for sale, you will have seen several that were seen on T.V shows related to Tiny Houses. The one thing they all have in common is that they ( Tiny Home Owners) made demands that, although made for good T.V ( or a challenge for the builder) was the crux of their demise.
It pains me when I have a window into someones purchase/build and can see that, by the builder just blindly meeting their demands
( like a tiny house that doubled as a store for example) he was not serving his customers properly...…But thats show biz.
Yet the facts remain real. Your goals and wishes, all need to meet together at a place called reality. To us here at T.H.E.K this is where our years of experience is priceless. Our job is to guide you through this process seamlessly and give you the confidence that the choices you are making are sound...Not just from a cost perspective...But from one of usefulness as well. A well designed Tiny Home is the difference between success and regretting the day you decided to go Tiny.
I Know...I Know. Its tough talk but the silver lining is that you have found a Tiny Home builder that has your
goals at heart, yet not blinded to the limitations set before us either by an unrealistic budget or by the size of the livable space we have to work with.
At Tiny Home Eco-Kauai, we want your purchase to be as successful as your new life will be in one of our Tiny Homes.
We are here to make sure that happens!
"Everyone Deserves to Own a TINY home Eco-Kauai Piece of Paradise"