Tiny house – How to built a 15-square-meter house yourself | Building a tiny house

This is 19-year-old Leopold Tomaschek, and
this is his house. He built it all himself. It has 15 square meters of floor space – enough
for him. It even has a terrace where he can sit in
the sun. Leopold Tomaschek likes it this way. His tiny house is parked in the small town
of Hitzacker, Lower Saxony. “I think one of the best parts of living in
a tiny house is being close to nature. For instance, I can feel it when a strong
wind blows outside or rain patters on the roof.” His tiny house is two-meters-50 wide and six-meters-30
long. It’s equipped with underfloor heating and
a good-sized stove in the kitchen. Leopold Tomaschek likes to cook – and lounge
on the little sofa in the living room. There’s even room for his piano. “It’s fun for me to live here in my tiny house. I’m sure that’s because I only have the things
around me that really make me happy.” He was seventeen when he designed his tiny
house. He got the idea from a school homework assignment. But Leopold Tomaschek wasn’t satisfied with
looking at the theory and leaving it at that. He wanted to build the house. He started planning it in December 2015. A year later, he started building his house. He went about it step by step, learning by
doing, trial and error. That meant a few errors. Sometimes the weather didn’t cooperate, other
times, he cut the materials to wrong sizes. “You’re the architect keeping track of everything,
and at the same time, the contractor watching the finances, and then you have to be your
own handyman, looking for solutions to all the little problems.” The house cost 11-thousand euros to build. He paid half himself, the rest came from his
family. He’s been living in the tiny house for ten
months. The utility bills are low. He pays just 42 euros a month for electricity. The insulation is wood fiber. It’s environmentally friendly and keeps the
interior cool in summer. “What I’ve found is totally practical about
my house is that my fridge is just two steps away. One step to the stove, and one-and-a-half
back to the sofa. For lazy people like me, that’s incredibly
practical.” The tiny house concept originated in the United
States. Nearly a century ago, people started building
little houses on wheels to be more mobile. Now the Tiny House movement has spread around
the world. Its fans reduce their material needs to the
minimum, making a personal philosophy of efficient use of space. “What I see as beneficial about the Tiny House
movement is that it creates a general awareness for the issues that are behind it, those being
sustainability, ecology, healthier consumer habits, minimalism, etcetera.” Now, he’s finished school and started his
own company. Leopold Tomaschek passes on his experiences
with his tiny house to paying clients the world over. And he’s got commissions for more houses like
his. Occasionally, clients or neighbors drop in
for some advice in person. Egon Maihofer has plans to build his own tiny
house. “I think it’s great that people can do this
who’ve never had anything to do with it before. It’s just pure enthusiasm – to put a little
house like this somewhere, maybe even in my own yard. That sounds to me like a lot of fun.” The fascination of these tiny houses and of
the whole community involved in them is something that runs through all segments of society. There are just as many young people interested
in them as older people, and rich and poor. I think that’s really fascinating – and quite
surprising, too. It’s an opportunity to bring about alternative
forms of living – like this tiny house.” The fascination of living in a tiny house
may lie in its freedom and independence. Soon, Leopold Tomaschek will set off to see
the world. He might rent his house to tourists, or just
take it along with him.

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