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Anna’s Tiny House

May 12, 2016

Member, Anna Seltzer, has been working on a Tiny House since November at the DIYcave, and the transformation has been fun to watch. We decided to do a Q&A with Anna about her experience on the build and using the tools available at DIYcave.

Tell us a little about yourself: I’m a native Oregonian, born and raised (though due to propensity for adventuring, My home state has become more of a home base). I grew up in Portland, got educated in Corvallis, and finished up my undergraduate degree here in Bend. After graduation, I stayed. I work in education and am working towards a second degree. In a few weeks, I’ll be moving to Washington to take a job with STEM curriculum design.

Why did you decide to build a tiny house? What inspired you? Last year while living in China, I made a list. Things I wanted to accomplish before the age of thirty. Why was I in China? Because I figured if I didn’t go, I might always regret it. The same philosophy applies to my adventure in house building. At some point, you’ve got to s$%t or get off the pot.

Aside for that, I spent the last four or five years doodling floor plans and dreaming of this build. I find many aspects of tiny house living to be cohesive with my lifestyle. I’ve always lived simply but also like to nest. I thrive off of the unknown, settling down in the typical sense is likely not on the agenda anytime soon. I appreciate aesthetically pleasing places. I enjoy creating. If it were up to me, I’d spend all summer in a tent, in the woods.

What did you do to prepare to build your tiny house? I dreamt, I researched, I sleuthed on websites, read books, and watched youtube videos. I never watched a single episode of Tiny House Hunters or the like. I prepared to be discouraged. I knew it would be difficult. I built up a support network of friends near and far who I could turn to for advice. Then I bought a trailer.

What’s been the easiest part of building your tiny house? Nothing has been easy. I began this build armed with the knowledge that a screw and a nail were somehow different. My baseline knowledge was next to nothing. I’ve learned so much and come so far.

What’s been the hardest part? Finding the balance between motivation and practicality. I’ve learned that sometimes it’s best to take a moment to climb in my loft or tinker with my wood stove. Or visit the IKEA website. In reality, anything I did at the beginning of the build was the hardest. This was when my experience and knowledge was next to zilch.

If you could give advice to someone building a tiny house, what would it be? Start in the spring/summer (I started in November and fought weather). Do your homework. Make time and overestimate the amount of time you’ll need for just about everything. Take the plunge.

How was it working on the project at DIYcave? Working at the DIYcave has been spectacular. I’m honestly not sure how else I would have gotten to where I am. If someone who works there doesn’t have an answer to a question, there is a good chance that someone there does. This house has been built with all kinds of help from Cave member, stewards, and owners. I’ve also had a lot more freedom in materials I could use, primarily due to the tools (belt sander, planer, table saw, etc.) available to me at the Cave.

Join us on May 22 from 10am – 6 pm as Anna show’s off her Tiny House! If you can’t make it in person, join us for our Facebook Live Event at 1 pm as she gives us a tour.

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