Tiny House Builder
Selecting from the many Tiny House Builders that have suddenly popped up in the past few years can seem like a challenge. What makes people decide to choose one builder over another? What are the common questions that folks must ask themselves before entering into this relationship upon which your very tiny Future will be based? Some basic thoughts you will want to consider as you move forward that will help you decide if Seattle Tiny Homes is the right builder for you.
How long have they been building?
The tiny house movement is really still in its “baby” stage, so you might be tempted to go with a builder that has only been operating for a short amount of time, especially if they advise you about their many years in the construction business. Don’t be too hasty! There are other tiny house building companies that have been around for longer, and they have a wealth of knowledge about everything tiny, and how to get every square inch exactly right.
Those companies that have been building and selling tiny for years have learned, through trial and error, what works, and perhaps more importantly what doesn’t. Things such as: weight distribution, rodent/moisture barriers for the trailer, and air circulation to prevent too much moisture in the tiny space…are all factors that only experience can teach, and only a few of them.
The qualification of having been a “regular” house builder prior to jumping into the tiny business does not always mean the tiny houses will be built correctly. Seattle Tiny Homes has been building and selling tiny homes on wheels since 2010. And while Sharon Read, CEO and designer, was a “regular” home builder prior to this, the years since she began building tiny have highlighted the major differences between building small …and everything else. For example, in a traditional house, it might not matter if a stud is off by bit- it can be covered over and ignored. In a tiny house, every measurement must be precise, and exactly where it is supposed to go. Careless mistakes cannot be made and then covered up when every inch count.
What are they built on?
You should not build a THOW on anything less than a trailer made exactly for that purpose. THOW are meant to be mobile, and not all trailers are created equal. Since this is the literal foundation of your future home, it needs to be up to that task.
Don’t be afraid to ask your builder of choice about the trailers they use. Seattle tiny Homes actually builds our own trailers, since we were unable to find a manufacturer that could meet our exacting standards.
STH’s Tiny House trailers are equipped with:
- pre-installed and insulated sub-floor
- an integrated steel framework coupled with a special moisture/rodent barrier and marine grade plywood for additional protection
- insulated floor with rigid foam board sealed with spray foam and caulking
- extra space for building (building out over the wheel wells and the drop-down floor allows for 12-18” more width 6-8” more headspace)
- three axle options: drop axles, straight axles, or off-road axles
- industrial paint designed to inhibit rust
- adjustable coupler and sidewinding jack
- a two-year warranty on the structure and axles
- …and more!
What materials do they use?
It is important to understand that not all housing materials are created equal. Although it may be tempting to purchase a cheaper tiny house, be sure that the cost is not coming out where it counts. Ask the builder what they are using to build the tiny houses they produce and understand what it means. Do your research! Some materials are inexpensive but they will not stand up to the test of time, the motion of travel, or the weather of winter! Cheaper is not always better.
Seattle Tiny Homes is environmentally conscious and use both closed cell spray foam and rigid foam that are zero ozone depleting, or natural products such as wool. We build with FSC plywood wherever available. We are happy to install solar panels for you, or a water catchment system. Our tiny homes have vents at either end of the home for better air circulation. With a chemically-sensitive owner, we understand how affecting materials can be. We do not use formaldehyde-based products. Each of our tiny homes are built only with high quality, environmentally responsible materials.