Tumbleweed Tiny House

Alicia Harris doesn’t want to be trapped in one place, but she doesn’t mind living in tight quarters, according to a report by the Columbia Missourian. With plans to graduate in May, the University of Missouri student has found a way to satisfy her aspirations to be mobile and own her own home.

Harris lives in a 180-square-foot house built on a flatbed trailer in Cottonwood RV Park north of Columbia with her 120-pound Great Dane, Roscoe. Despite its small size, her home has a kitchen, a bathroom, shower, bedroom and living area — even a closet and bit of other storage.

Harris finished building the house with her father, Paul Harris, in May 2013 and lived in it for two months this past summer while interning in Amarillo, Texas.

The two spent seven months creating the portable house, complete with electricity and plumbing, atop a 7 1/2-by-18-foot flatbed trailer.

Paul Harris used his years of construction experience to bring the idea to life. He created his own blueprint based on the layout of a model house by Tumbleweed Tiny House — a company that builds and delivers custom houses.

The purchase of a Tumbleweed Tiny House costs $57,000 to $66,000, and Paul Harris said his daughter’s house used about $22,000 of supplies.

Tiny houses have been a growing part of the movement toward a more sustainable lifestyle. Harris wants to travel a lot so the most attractive aspect was the mobility. But she has no complaints about the sustainable qualities her house offers.

“A perfect example: My first month’s electricity bill was $4, and the second one was $10,” she said, “and that was living in Texas in the middle of summer.”

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