Have you found yourself dreaming of ditching your high-priced rent or mortgage and living a simpler existence in a tiny house? It’s a growing trend right now but many have learned that, in order to have all of the bells and whistles you see on those house hunting shows, you’ll have to dish out a considerable amount of money. That’s the opposite of what you want, right?

By making smart choices and going back to the original spirit of the movement, you can reduce costs and you can make your dream a reality. Here are some tips to help you get started!

Plan for Initial Costs

Do you have your own tools, trailer and truck? If not, are you going to rent or buy these items? Will you stay in a more residential area or do you plan to relocate to someplace more remote? Will you be installing modern conveniences such as plumbing and electricity or are you going to live like the pioneers? Basically, you need to look at all aspects of this project and be honest about how much it will cost to just get started. The reality check will help you know, right away, whether you are financially ready to embark on this journey.

Build it Yourself

One of the things that is truly remarkable is that many of these tiny homes are being built by people who have never done any sort of construction before. In fact, a lot of them rely on YouTube, blogs, discussion forums and other websites, to build their houses. Also, there is a fairly tight community so don’t be surprised if people offer to lend a hand. Just make sure you feed them in return!

Recycle, Refurbish

Some people get lucky and find an old, existing structure that can be converted into an amazing tiny home. Some people have even used giant storage containers in lieu of actually constructing four walls and a roof. This, of course, cuts down on costs and the time it takes to make it move-in ready. If you aren’t as fortunate, consider using recycled materials for your house. Start scavenging early and, rather than looking for things that will fit your design, create a design around the pieces (door, windows, etc…) that you already have.

Share Land

Sometimes, buying the land is the expensive part. Considering teaming up with another person, couple, or family who share a similar dream and split the costs of the land. Since you will be living in such tiny structures, you should still be able to have more space between your homes than you would living traditionally in the city. Just make sure to check zoning regulations in your area.

Weigh Long-term Savings

Your initial costs may seem high but, depending on your plan, you could end up saving a lot of money in the long run. If you are planning to live sustainably by growing your own food and either going without electricity or installing wind turbines/solar panels to generate your own energy, you will reduce your food and utility expenses considerably. This will add up over the years! Compare your current and future budgets – it may be the final piece of information you need to take the plunge!

Building a tiny home is a dream for many but the project can seem daunting. By planning for your initial costs, building your own structure, using recycled materials, sharing land and implementing sustainable practices, you may discover that it’s more of a reality than you originally thought.