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The Most Important Property of My Tiny House

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    The Most Important Property of My Tiny House

    Hi folks.

    My tiny house is bolted to the ground, being a converted 12 ft. x 12 ft. garden shed. I did this so as to improve retirement cash flow to support my online business (Old Dogs in Training, LLC). It's getting to be really hot in North Carolina right now, approaching 100 degrees F. in the last few days.

    Fortunately, one of the first things we did to the shed in preparation for turning it into an office (long before thinking about living here), was to have it well insulated. As you can see in the photo below, taken last winter, with the wood stove cranking out heat there is no snow melt on the roof. My builder, Jonny, did a great job.

    Just as important, as I live on 12-volt electricity with no AC, the house stays cool on the hottest of days until about 3:30 - 4:00 p.m. Then the dogs and I take a siesta, and emerge into the cool of the evening to collect food from the vegetable garden.

    I love living here, and it sure has helped my cash flow.

    When I go into my regular house (637 sq. ft.), that is now rented to some really nice graduate students, it seems huge.

    Why did America go for such large houses, I wonder, as an immigrant from the UK in 1979.

    Enjoy your tiny house living, and remember to be sure it is well insulated, especially the ceiling.

    Cheers,

    kev aka FitOldDog


    Click image for larger version

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    #2
    I wish our house had better insulation, and if I could do it over, I would probably invest in upgraded insulation. I definitely second the idea that this is one area that shouldn't be skimped on. Looks like your builder did a great job!

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      #3
      FitOldDog What type of insulation did you use? Batt, denim, blown, spray, radiant barrier, etc?

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        #4
        Hi Chuck, it was R13 Wall Insulation. kev

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          #5
          Originally posted by FitOldDog View Post
          Hi Chuck, it was R13 Wall Insulation. kev
          So it was batt insulation (the stuff that comes in rolls and usually made of pink or yellow fiberglass material)?

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            #6
            The Second Most Important Property of My Tiny House: Bug Screens

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            Hi Folks,

            I do love my tiny house (TTGH - The Tiny Green House), but mosquitoes love me. Bummer! I had a screen door, but it kind of fell apart, and anyway, it wafted bugs in, rather then out. The I noticed that my big (TLBH - The Little Blue House) house was fitted with magnetic bug screen door. I was immediately intrigued, then bought two sets from Amazon (no, I don't always buy from Amazon, as I don't like the 500 pound gorilla syndrome. In fact, I buy as many books from Kobo as I do from the gorilla.

            Anyway.

            I really appreciate these screen doors, you just walk through and they zip shut behind you.

            Only took about 20 minutes to install. After some initial confusion the dogs and Cat, the cat (not so delighted), can negotiate them fine.

            There are multiple brands, but the ones I bought were from Easy Screen Doors. I guess I just liked the look of them.

            Definitely a plus for my tiny house living in North Carolina in the summer. They also permit be to open the front and back doors for airflow (no AC).

            That's it.

            Cheers,

            kev aka FitOldDog

            PS Big storm coming in, which I love to watch from my tiny house porch as I laugh at the mosquitoes trying to reach me.

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              #7
              Those are a lifesaver! Mosquitos love me too. And the flies out here are so big they'll knock you down.
              Our door opens 'out' like an RV so we couldn't put in a traditional screen door. I saw these 'doorway screens' at a friends place in Guanajuato and thought they were great. I'm obsessed with white so I was bummed when I saw them everywhere in black... but you know if you troll the internet long enough... πŸ‘†πŸΌ
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                #8
                EFFICIENCY IS KEY: HOW TOWELS SAVE ME WORK

                Hi folks,

                I live in 102 sq. ft. plus 32 sq. ft. screened porch, with two dogs and a cat, next to my vegetable garden. So we traipse in a lot of leaves. This creates work. I'd rather be writing my books or training than cleaning the carpet.

                Solution. Two old towels are laid on the floor during high traffic times. Afterwards, I just shake them outside and leave them to air for a little while (if it's not raining).

                I just wash them in the usual way if my old dog, Scooter pees on them (he's 19, blind and deaf, so that's normal).

                Anything to improve my fun/work ratio.

                kev

                PS That's my breakfast, 80% direct from the garden, along with some more vegetable matter on the towel. It is SO MUCH easier than cleaning the carpet.

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                  #9
                  Thanks for these insights into your tiny home & lifestyle. And breakfast - yum! That snow photo & the insulation details are impressive especially for me living in FL! Do you get any inside condensation on your windows?
                  Great idea about the door towels too - easier to maintain than bulky doormats which seem to just collect the dirt & let you walk thru it each time you go in.

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                    #10
                    Originally posted by NorthernSoutherner View Post
                    Those are a lifesaver! Mosquitos love me too. And the flies out here are so big they'll knock you down.
                    Our door opens 'out' like an RV so we couldn't put in a traditional screen door. I saw these 'doorway screens' at a friends place in Guanajuato and thought they were great. I'm obsessed with white so I was bummed when I saw them everywhere in black... but you know if you troll the internet long enough...
                    LOVE the white screens! It makes the home look so airy.
                    Could you show & tell us about your bookshelves over the doorway - maybe start a new topic there? They look intriguing!

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                      #11
                      I hope you find those white bug screens, kev

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                        #12
                        Originally posted by Betsy-TinyCircles View Post

                        LOVE the white screens! It makes the home look so airy.
                        Could you show & tell us about your bookshelves over the doorway - maybe start a new topic there? They look intriguing!
                        Haha! Probably one of the most talked about features when people visit the first time. (The first is the washer/dryer combo.) So, the backstory is I was a major bookworm and collector of old books for years. I had a real challenge unloading all of my books when we downsized. By the way, you don't get much for books these days.. a sad commentary on the state of our local culture.

                        I knew there were just 'a few' books I wanted to keep and I didn't want to disrupt our storage to keep them. (There are a few squirreled away here and there that you don't see here.) I knew there were a few books that had good memories attached to them and I wanted to be able to look at them now and then. So, I will tell you my secret weapon for tiny house living and decor. If you like modern minimalism like we do, then the Container Store will become your friend.

                        I have scoured Amazon and countless other places on the internet for VERY specific items, with necessary dimensions and I ALWAYS end up at the Container Store. I know that there stuff costs more but I figure it this way: I often find that when we buy something to 'get by' then we often become dissatisfied with it in a year or so and we end up trying to replace the item with another cheap item. Those costs and the time wasted doing endless research end up costing you more than buying the right item (and usually) a well made item. I don't know where they source their stuff, but I find things there that I cannot find anywhere else (and believe me, I try HARD).

                        So, for the person who hates to read, they are floating bookshelves from the Container Store. They come in sizes and can be used for other things beside books: Umbra Conceal Book Shelf


                        We also use acrylic shelving from them. I don't want to disrupt the brightness of the house and I love the way light passes through them: Umbra Sheer Acrylic Wall Shelf

                        Our philosophy is when you really downsize and stop buying stuff, you have the money to buy the things you REALLY want, not just the things that are cheap.

                        ❀️
                        NS

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                          #13
                          Thanks for the link and info on the Container Store. I love those acrylic shelves and those are going to be perfect for us.

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                            #14
                            Originally posted by TinyHouseGirl View Post
                            Thanks for the link and info on the Container Store. I love those acrylic shelves and those are going to be perfect for us.
                            Do be careful with where you put them... some people (hubby) have smacked into them because they couldn't see them πŸ™„. Don't ask me how he didn't see the stuff on them but he hit his head 3 times the first week. I do wish they had rounded corners, just for safety. But they really are great.

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                              #15
                              Originally posted by FitOldDog View Post
                              I hope you find those white bug screens, kev
                              I did! And I have temporarily installed them on a friend's door where I'm spending the summer while I figure out where my tiny house can be placed here in Lee County, FL.
                              ​One great thing about the model I got is they can be removed & reused - just have to get a roll of sticky Velcro.

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