8 reasons you should build instead of buy your Tiny House RV

As many of you know, I built my own Tiny House RV and I wouldn't have it any other way! Below I've listed 8 reasons you should BUILD OVER BUY. But don't worry, if you aren't up for the construction challenge, click here to read 8 reasons you should BUY OVER BUILD.

8 reasons to BUILD INSTEAD OF BUY:

1). You have construction experience

No brainer. If you know your way around the tool shed, building your own Tiny House RV should be relatively easy. For an expert builder, we advise that a build will take 400-600 work hours. 

You can also take a workshop to learn the skills to build your own tiny. I took one prior to building my tiny, and now I teach them! 

2). You have a great build location

The ideal build site is covered, with ample storage for materials and access to electricity for power tools. If you have the perfect build location, give yourself a pat on the back! You will be the envy of many tiny enthusiasts. 

3). You have a budget & savings

One of the biggest hurdles for any tiny house enthusiast is creating a realistic budget. How you will pay for the materials, tools, etc? Financing is not usually an option for DIY Tiny House RV builds, so you may need to get creative. For example, you can save money by gathering reclaimed/free items. For a breakdown of my DIY Tiny House RV costs and materials, click here.

If you already have a budget and enough savings to build, what are you waiting for?? Go for it! 

4). You have a support team

I had a bunch of volunteers help on my Tiny House RV. So if you have a support team, for physical labor and mental inspiration, it might be enough to get you through the challenge.

5). You want the knowledge

I love the fact that I built my own Tiny House RV. I know it isn't perfect, but I've also learned to love my tiny's faults. Has it always been your goal to build something yourself? A Tiny House RV is the perfect project for you!

6). You want to save money on labor

Arguably the most important reason to build your own Tiny House RV - to save money! Labor can cost almost (if not more) than materials. If you do the work yourself, you can save BIG on the overall cost.

7). You don't care about being RVIA certified

It is not possible to be RVIA certified as a DIY builder (only a manufacturer, like Tumbleweed, can get this certification). If this certification doesn't matter to you, then perhaps building your tiny is the better choice.

8). You want to fulfill your dream

If it has been your dream to build a Tiny House RV for many years, and you are determined, don't let anything (including the above) stand in your way!

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*For the alternative point of view: 8 reasons to BUY instead of BUILD a Tiny House RV

What do you think: Build or Buy? Comment below

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Jenna BioJenna Spesard is currently traveling around North America in a DIY Tumbleweed Cypress. She writes about Tiny Homes and travel on her informative blog: "Tiny House Giant Journey."

Written by Jenna Spesard — August 22, 2016

Filed under: 2016   barn raiser   build   carpenter   community   experience   tiny home   tiny house   tumbleweed  

8 reasons you should buy instead of build your Tiny House RV

Are you confused as to whether you should BUY or BUILD your future Tiny House RV? Don't worry, you're not alone. I host Tumbleweed build workshops, and I see a lot of eager individuals start a construction project and never finish. Depending on your situation, building your own tiny dream house might not be the most economical or practical option.

Below I’ve listed several reasons to BUY INSTEAD OF BUILD. I encourage you to review and decide for yourself. For the alternative point of view, read this article for reasons you should BUILD INSTEAD OF BUY

1). You don’t have enough time

I built my own Tiny House RV without any prior construction experience, and It took me one whole year. For a Tumbleweed design we estimate the following for total work hours based on your experience level:

Example scenario: John is a beginner builder with weekends available for his construction project. He can build year round, without weather delays, because he has a covered build site. If John is able to work eight hours a day on Saturday and Sunday (16 hours a weekend) it will take him 62.5 weekends to complete his build. Most likely John will need 1.5 years to construct his Tiny House RV. 

Inside the Tumbleweed build facility 

If you purchase a fully built Tiny House RV from Tumbleweed, you can have it delivered within a few months. That is a big time difference! So if you don't have enough time to build, consider purchasing a fully built model or half built shell.

2). You don’t have a build site

Where will you build your Tiny House RV? Ideally you will have a large covered location, with ample electricity and storage for your materials. Finding the perfect built site is easier said than done. If you don't have an ideal build location, expect challenges and delays in construction.

Inside the Tumbleweed build facility 

3). You don’t have the tools

Tools are an expensive investment. You can purchase used tools, rent tools or find a tool sharing build site. Be careful not to blow your budget on tools.

4). You want to finance the costs

DIY Tiny House RV build projects are difficult to finance. If you don’t have enough money saved up, you run the risk of going into credit card debt or putting your build on hold. I’ve seen many builds never reach completion due to this problem. So if you want to finance your Tiny House RV, go ahead and buy one - there are more financing options. 

5). You want an RVIA certified Tiny House RV

If you build your own Tiny House RV it will not be RVIA certified. Not having the RVIA certification can limit your financing, insurance, DMV registration and future parking options. More on the RVIA here.

Tumbleweed is one of the few RVIA certified Tiny House RV builders in the country. If you purchase a fully built tiny from Tumbleweed, it will be RVIA certified. 

6). You don't have the passion

I know this sounds silly, but building a Tiny House RV is a huge commitment. I’ve seen projects fail because the individuals became bored or frustrated. Make sure your passion won't fade.

7). You lack the physical ability

Skills can be learned, but physical labor is still physical labor. I've seen a handicapped builder finish a beautiful Tiny House RV, but the strain of construction is not for everyone. Before you decided to build, make sure you are physically capable of completing the project. 

8). You haven’t done your research.

Building a Tiny House RV is not the same as building a regular home. The structure has to be road worthy, vented correctly, capable of withstanding extreme winds and many other unique practices. It’s a specialized type of construction. These skills can be learned, but it takes research. 

Tumbleweed has been building Tiny House RVs for over 15 years. They have a specialized team and a proven road worthy product. If you don't believe you can build a structurally sound Tiny House RV, purchase one instead.

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What do you think? Buy or Build? Comment below.

*For the alternative perspective, click here for reasons to BUILD a Tiny House RV instead of BUY. 

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Jenna BioJenna Spesard is currently traveling around North America in a DIY Tumbleweed Cypress. She writes about Tiny Homes and travel on her informative blog: "Tiny House Giant Journey."

Written by Jenna Spesard — August 12, 2016

Filed under: 2016   build   diy   purchase   shell   tiny home   Tiny House   Tiny House Company   tiny house rv   Tumbleweed   workshop  

5 Reasons to attend a Tumbleweed Workshop

Everyone who attends a Tumbleweed workshop is an alternative thinker and dreamer!

At Tumbleweed we host over 30 "Dream Big, Go Tiny" workshops annually all over the United States and a few in Canada. We strive to improve our presentation with the latest and greatest information and have a team of people dedicated to our workshops. We don't consider it "work" to teach others the skills necessary to build a Tiny House RV. Helping others achieve their dreams is fun and fulfilling! 

Whichever build workshop you choose to attend, either hosted by Tumbleweed or another reputable company, we know you'll walk away with a positive outlook on the tiny house movement. It's time to your first step, and GO TINY! 

5 Reasons to Attend a Tumbleweed Workshop:

1). Presenters share personal stories (and mistakes)

Coming from all over the country, Tumbleweed workshop presenters have either built, designed, or owned (any many times all of the above) a Tiny House RV. Many of them started out by attending a Tumbleweed workshop!

"I always share the story of how I crashed my Tiny House RV because I forgot one simple safety feature." - Guillaume Dutilh, workshop presenter

Not only will our presenters inform you on the best building practices specific to Tiny House RVs, but they'll also share personal advice of what NOT to do. These anecdotes have saved hundreds of workshop attendees from making costly mistakes.

2). Meet other local enthusiasts

Our weekend workshops range from 60-100 attendees from diverse backgrounds! That's a lot of people gathered in one room with similar interests. On the Saturday evening of our workshop weekend, we hold a social mixer. Not only is this event a lot fun, it's also a great opportunity for attendees to mingle and exchange contact information. At the end of the workshop, we also send out an e-mail contact list (to those that wish to participate) so that attendees can keep in touch.

Many times, attendees will volunteer to help construct each other's Tiny House RVs. Sometimes experienced carpenters, plumbers, and electricians attending the workshop will share advice and offer to work on local projects. Mingling with other local enthusiasts at the workshop can help you find free/cheap labor and life long friends! 

Image taken from current Tumbleweed Workshop Workbook

3). Learn SPECIFIC Tiny House RV build methods

Tiny House RV construction is a blend of regular home construction and RV construction. Building a road-worthy structure will require meeting certain specifications. Although the Tumbleweed workshop is mostly focused on beginner build methods, even the most experienced carpenter will learn a few tricks that apply specifically to Tiny House RV construction. 

Image taken from current Tumbleweed Workshop Workbook

4). Gather resources on appliances, green energy, tiny travel and off-grid practices

Over the years, Tumbleweed has updated their workshop presentation to include the latest and greatest information relevant to the industry. At the workshop you'll learn about small space appliances, green energy, as well as travel and off-grid practices that will help you create an efficient and functional Tiny House RV. These resources are absolutely priceless and will save you hundreds (if not thousands) of dollars on your build. 

Image taken from Tumbleweed Workshop Workbook

5). Get inspired, ask questions and receive DISCOUNTS!

At the Tumbleweed workshop you'll receive a workbook with hundreds of colorful, detailed photographs. Flip through the pages of your workbook and circle your favorite styles, appliances and space saving ideas. Interested in multi-purpose furniture, a downstairs bedroom, or an affordable portable solar system? No problem! Get inspired by Tiny House RV images and stories from the workshop staff. 

At the workshop, you'll have plenty of opportunities to chat with a member of the workshop staff. This is your chance to ask questions and get real, unbiased answers. 

Get the answer to these FAQs and many more:

What is it really like to use a compost toilet?

Where can you park your Tiny House Rv?

How is it sharing the space with your significant other?

What heater should I choose?

How much does a typical Tiny House RV weigh? 

TUMBLEWEED OFFERS DISCOUNTS TO THEIR WORKSHOP ATTENDEES!

At the workshop, you'll be informed of a variety of discounts on Tumbleweed products. So, if you already know you want to purchase a trailer, barn raiser or fully built RV, attending a workshop might pay for itself! 

Is there a Tiny House RV available to tour at every Tumbleweed workshop?

We always strive to have a Tiny House RV available to tour at each of our 30+ annual workshops scattered throughout the country, but this is not always possible. When there is an owner located in the area willing to let attendees walk through their Tiny House RV, we organize a tour to happen during the two day workshop. For obvious reasons, not every Tiny House RV owner is willing to open their space to our attendees and we absolutely respect their privacy. 

As the list of Tiny House RV owners grows with every passing year, tours are becoming more and more common at our workshops. When a tour is not possible, our workshop staff will tape layouts on the floor to provide a similar spacial awareness effect.  

Will we see you at one of our workshops this year?

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Jenna BioJenna Spesard is currently living and traveling around North America in a DIY Tumbleweed Cypress with her partner, Guillaume. They are photographing and writing about Tiny Homes and their adventure. Follow their informative blog. 
 
     

Written by Jenna Spesard — February 26, 2016

Filed under: 2016   build   construction   dream big   go tiny   tiny home   tiny house   tumbleweed   workshop  

What you WISH you knew before building your Tumbleweed...

This past week our 2016 Tumbleweed Workshop presenters and hosts met to discuss the coming year and to share what they WISH they knew before building their Tumbleweed.

As a team passionate about Tiny House RVs, the workshop hosts and presenters collaborated to create an even better workshop for the 2016 season! Get ready to hear some fun personal stories, partake in a few team activities and learn new building practices specific to Tiny House RVs. This year is going to be the best year of workshops yet! 

What do you WISH you knew before building your Tumbleweed?

Our hosts and presenters were happy to share an aw-shucks moment, explaining what they wish they knew before building their Tumbleweed. 

Miranda Aisling is building a Tumbleweed Cypress in Boston, Massachusetts. She will be hosting several Tumbleweed workshops in 2016. More on her build / story here. 

What do you WISH you knew?

"(I didn't realize that) trimming out the roof takes a really looooong time. It is the first stage where any off measurements really start to matter. This is the one area that I didn't budget enough time for, and it set us back a couple weekends." - Miranda

Art Cormier built a Tiny House RV in 2012 to be used as a backyard abode behind his rock climbing gym in Lafayette, Louisiana. He has presented Tumbleweed workshops for the past few years to thousands who wish to achieve their tiny dream. More on his build / story here

What do you WISH you knew?

"I did not think about how useful flat counter space is, and how little is available with standard appliances. For example, my cooktop burners are elevated (not flush with my counter). The available flat counter space for unloading grocery bags in my Tiny House RV is very limited. In retrospect, I would choose appliances with covers or that are flush with my counters to extend my usable space." - Art 
Jenna Spesard built a Tumbleweed Cypress with her partner, Guillaume, in 2014. Over the past year they have towed their Tiny House RV over 22,000 miles across the United States and Canada. In 2016, she will be hosting various Tumbleweed workshops. More on her story / build here.
What do you WISH you knew?
"I carefully planned out my interior design, but one item I forgot was to leave space for my laundry hamper. I don't want to sidestep my hamper every time I enter my bathroom, so our solution is to place the hamper in the shower when we're not showering. In retrospect, I wish I had an allocated space for my hamper that didn't require me moving it in and out of the shower." - Jenna
Guillaume Dutilh built a Tumbleweed Cypress with his partner, Jenna, in 2014. Over the past year they have towed their Tiny House RV over 22,000 miles across the United States and Canada. In 2016, he will be presenting and hosting various Tumbleweed workshops. More on his story / build here.
What do you WISH you knew?
"I wish I had a better game plan for changing a tire on our trailer. It's actually pretty technical since the our Tiny House RV weighs 10,100 pounds fully loaded. It would have been a good idea to practice once before setting out on our trip, but instead I had to learn on a dirt road in the backcountry of Alaska!"- Guillaume  

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Jenna BioJenna Spesard is currently living and traveling around North America in a DIY Tumbleweed Cypress with her partner, Guillaume. They are photographing and writing about Tiny Homes and their adventure. Follow their informative blog. 
 
     

Written by Jenna Spesard — December 29, 2015

Filed under: 2015   build   host   presenter   tiny home   tiny house   tiny house movement   Tiny House RV   Tumbleweed   workshop  

$500 Discount On Tumbleweed Barn Raisers!

What is a Barn Raiser?

If you're interested in building your own Tumbleweed but find yourself restricted due to time, skill level, tools, etc. a Tumbleweed Barn Raiser might be the best choice for you!

When you purchase a Tumbleweed Barn Raiser, we deliver a partially built Tiny House RV that you can finish yourself! Design your Barn Raiser using our interactive builder and sleep easy knowing that the foundation of your Tiny House RV will be built by professionals.

We estimate that our Barn Raisers save 100-200+ hours on your total build time. We offer 10 different designs / lengths for you to choose from, now including our modern design - the Tumbleweed Mica. 

Our Modern Mica - NOW AVAILABLE AS A BARN RASIER!

Financing Now Available!

We're excited to announce that financing is now available for Tumbleweed Barn Raisers.

  • No Money Down
  • 100% Financing
  • Get funded in 72 hours
  • Interest rates from 3.99% to 8.99%
  • Payments from $213 to $500 per month
  • Sales Tax, registration and shipping costs can be financed too!

For more information on financing, click here.

$500 Discount - Now Through August 31st!

Get a free quote on your Barn Raiser anytime between now and August 31st, 2015 and receive $500 off* the total price! Our specialists are waiting to assist you and answer any questions. 

*discount valid for 30 days after quote is received

Barn Raiser Customer Stories

We like to check in on our Barn Raiser customers occasionally to see how their builds are coming along. It's amazing how every Tiny House RV is different! After delivering the shell, we find that our excited new barn raiser customers infuse their passions and preferences into finishing the build. This really makes their Tiny House RV come alive! See for yourself in a few featured Barn Raiser stories below. 

"JStalls Tiny House"

Jonathan and his Tumbleweed Barn Raiser, after he installed the windows himself!

Jonathan Stalls customized his 24 foot Elm Barn Raiser to have a side door and no porch. He also choose to have Tumbleweed install the metal standing seam roof. Since receiving his Barn Raiser he has installed the windows, cedar siding and front door himself! 

Look at this beautiful and sophisticated Tiny House RV basking in the Colorado sunshine! Follow Jonathan's Build on Facebook.

"Tiny House For Three"

Maighen, Brandy, and their son R.A.D. with their new Tumbleweed Barn Raiser

Using a mixture of materials, Maighen, Brandy and R.A.D have given their Tumbleweed Cypress Barn Raiser uniqueness and flare! We love seeing how creative they've been with their build. A canvas was delivered, but what they've created is a piece of art!

Check out this Texas family's eclectic and colorful Barn Raiser on their website, Instagram and facebook

"Tiny House in the Country" 

Chris's Tumbleweed Barn Raiser (Upon Pick Up)

Chris Schapdick lives in New York City but wanted his young daughter to have a connection to nature. He purchased property in upstate New York and decided to build a tiny mobile cabin for weekend getaways. A Tumbleweed Linden Barn Raiser was perfect for his situation because Chris was limited on time, but wanted the experience of building his own tiny retreat. 

Chris's  Picturesque "Tiny House in the Country," Winter 2015

Follow "Tiny House in the Country" online here

Want more Barn Raiser stories? Check out these blogs:

"The Tiny House the Grandma Built"

"Unskilled Build"

"Tiny Adventures in a Big World"

Written by Jenna Spesard — July 13, 2015

Filed under: 2015   Barn Raiser   Build   Construction   Cypress   Discount   Elm   Financing   Linden   Tiny House   Tiny House Movement   Tiny House RV   Tumbleweed  

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