The Tiny House in 4 months: We have exterior walls and roof! Plus our building/construction set-up

12/06/2014 03:32:00 AM

In my mind before we started this whole house ordeal, we'll have twinkly colorful tree in the corner of our new living room, and we'll be sipping hot tea on cold nights staring at that said tree in that said new living room by Christmas time. WHO AM I KIDDING?? Haha! It's merely 19 days before Christmas and we are NOWHERE near completion.

We have big progress on the exterior which you'll see in a while, but interior is still nothing but a big pile of mess. So here's some update on what went on in the Tiny House.

This was taken at 2.5 month mark. Columns / beams were up, and some floor wood beams installed.

This was taken about a week ago. Most of the steel frames and windows installed!
The house looks like a mess from the front, and it's quite hard to photograph and capture the progress from the garage, so here's a better view.

Here's where I left you on the 3 month update...

And this where we're at at 4 months! Roofing complete, air vents installed, window frames are there, and they started on the exterior walls! It's really exciting to see the house take shape, however long it's taking. hehe

Oh and I discovered a new photo angle for the house. Just a week ago, I never crossed the imaginary line towards the neighbor's roof. As you can see in the lot layout here, this is in a compound, so we share a garage with the neighbors, hence the one big long roof situation. But I very carefully and quietly walk out to their roof to see the tiny house in a new angle, and it was glorious! haha...

I can see both walls! They we're just starting on the exterior walls...

Here's when they completed the front wall...

And this was taken a while ago, front and one side almost complete! They're halfway done on the back wall but there's no way I'll jump on the roof of the other house so no, I won't be able to share that here. Haha

Cute right? Metal walls and all? Right? Say it is!! I was originally planning on using just white for the exterior walls, because well, less heat absorption. But while the bf and I are ordering the corrugated long span, we looked at their color swatch and was immediately drawn to this color --a deep blue with a hint of green in it. It took us a few seconds to decide to just go for it. 

The other side of the house is mostly covered in trees, so no problem with heat on that. The front and back doesn't get direct sunlight so we're not worried with that either. Our only concern is this big wall, which we'll just double the insulation and cross our fingers. Haha..  We put plenty of windows, and a lot of awning window on the topmost part of the house to provide ventilation and release some heat so I'm hoping for the best.

The roof is of course, white, and we're painting the window frames white as well, and the windows itself black. I think it will be cute. After all the exterior works, we'll have the roof of the main house repainted, since we've used that as "storage" and it got some beating. For that, we'll paint it green to mimic grass. Haha..  

The house looks almost done in those previous photos, but don't be fooled, here's the interior as of today.
NOTHING. Another storage. But oh, those windows we scored from a demolition guy, and I'll share all our different array of windows on another post. We have aluminum, white pvc, laminated pvc, analoc, and steel casement! They all don't match and we like it that way. Because it's waaay cheaper, and we're weird like that.

Another interior shot, if you can call this that.
That small room there would be the powder room on the third floor. And those are the trees that would help cool this house a lot.

So that's where we're at on the Tiny House in four very long months. And we have a few more to go before we can call it done. If you've had your house built, or know the process, you'll know that our progress is very very slow. People can build a big house from ground up in that span of time. I know, I've seen it. We have neighbors that's building WAY faster than this.

It's because of the building / construction set up we've chosen.
I've been so open about wanting to build this house in the least cost possible (don't we all?). I've asked several contractors to give me a quote for this type of build -- just the structure, no doors, no windows, no tiles, no fixtures, just the basics-- it ranges from 1 - 1.3M. I think it's reasonable, but we want it way lower. I know that adding all the finishes would add up to the cost and everything might go over 1.6m. Still not big for a house, but we wanted to have some savings left after all this, and besides, it will hopefully not be our forever home. (Can't imagine climbing all that stairs when we're older! haha)

So I spoke with my contractor, the one I'm using for many of my projects, and asked him if he could help us out. First, I trust him. Second, I trust his people. Basically, he lends me some of his people and we pay them directly. We pay on a weekly basis, and we also do all of the purchasing of materials for the house. So we're basically the contractor for this project. This way, we have control on which materials to purchase, source the cheapest option, and lower the cost. So that's why it's taking this long since we can't get as many people to work on the house. Only 4-5 people work on the house everyday, and sometimes it's even down to 3. haha... But I'll take that and just be patient. Some people are concerned about this set-up because workers are known to stall if paid on a daily basis (arawan), but we're mostly here to oversee their work, so that's not an issue.

As of the moment, we're at 670k Php cost total. Not bad. Of course, we have a lot more to purchase for the interior. Hardiflex for the walls, outlets, switches, tiles, fixtures, wood for cabinetries, etc. But we're hoping and praying to keep the cost to 1M Php. FINGERS CROSSED. 

I'm sorry as this might not be helpful to some of you who's building your house, I just have this privileges because of my working relationship with my contractor. But for some savings, you can ask for a quote for labor only and source the materials yourself. But you need to be on top of things and have those things delivered as needed.  The labor quote might go up if they have to sit and wait for the materials. And for the sake of honesty, this is not how I work on my projects. Hehe.. I of course can't build you a house for 1m. I worry that my openness about the Tiny House cost would give false expectations for potential clients about cost in the real world. :) Basically, Tiny house = fantasy world. Haha.. But really, we're doing hard labor for this house sourcing cheapest materials, second hand windows, reusing old doors, and I just hauled a lot of flooring, kitchen cabinets, sinks, and bathroom fixtures from my cousin's new condo which she's renovating. I got all those things for free, just paid for the trucking, which will give us huge savings for sure. So if you're willing to put up the hard work, I'm sure you can save a lot too.

So that's what we're doing for the Tiny House, and as we see it nearing it's completion, we're getting more antsy and impatient. We're almost there, getting there. But still a long way to go. I just keep  telling myself, we'll eventually be done. I'm just hoping we can get to celebrate the bf's birthday inside that hopefully finished house on March. Maybe we can put up a twinkly tree for that? ;)

For my sanity's sake, I just look at these.




  1. I'm quite excited to see how this turns out!

  2. Thanks! More than excited.. we are very very anxious to finish it all! Haha

  3. Excited to see how you'll do the interior. We're having our house built at the same time as yours and ours is also a small house so I'm very eager to learn how you'll decorate :)

  4. Hi cris! I'm excited for that time to come as well.. its fun to see the structure come to life but i'm soooo looking forward to be doing the inside of this house! Hopefully by january i'll have something to share. Good luck with your house! :)

  5. Kailan po ba matatapos? Malapit na po bah? Weeehhh im excited na rin miss elle 😍😘☺️

  6. Roujayl, naku sana nga malapit na!! We're finishing interiors na.. 3rd and loft level konti na lng... but 1st and 2nd floor mukang matagal pa! Will update the progress soon! :) :) Thanks.


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