16 year old builds tiny home to guarantee mortgage-free future

Austin Hay is still in high school, but he’s building his own house. It’s only 130 square feet, but it makes him a homeowner without a mortgage at just 16 years old. Right now, it’s parked in his parents’ backyard, but he’s built it on wheels so he plans to take it to college and then wherever he goes after he graduates.
He’s been sleeping in his tiny home for a few months now and he’s already decided not to return to big (his parents’ home is 1800 square feet). “Living small means less bills, living big means more bills,” he explained from the tiny stoop of his new home. “I don’t want to pay big bills”.

Hay’s 130-square-foot home may make him the youngest member of the growing Small House Movement.

Hay expects to spend about $12,000 building his home (the used trailer cost him $2000) and he’s paying for it working two summer jobs (at a camp and at a park snack bar). He’s cut his costs in half (the home’s estimated DIY price is $23,000) because Hay has scavenged everything from doors, windows and flooring to the kitchen sink (the hardwood floors were $25 at a salvage yard and so was the stainless steel sink).
For more info & links, original story here: http://faircompanies.com/videos/view/…




  1. Deana Todd says:


  2. Alyce Jacobs says:

    Wow, I bet his parents are proud.

  3. Suzanne Berg says:

    Brilliant! Absolutely brilliant. He has learned so much about the reality of life at such a young age.

  4. Andy Meier says:

    Rock on, Austin. I'm now inspired. Rock on.

  5. Jeremy Bell says:

    Right on!

  6. Sustain says:

    This kid is amazing and already is making better choices than most adults! It will be interesting to see what comes next for him. Seems like the kind of guy who would want to pursue a sustainable existence!

  7. james says:

    where can i learn how to build a house? does anyone have resources that i might use to learn? this is fantastic stuff.

  8. Leica Nelson says:

    We have a family friend who did the same as you Austin ~ at the same age. His isn't on wheels however but he sure showed his parents and all of us what he's capable of doing. I love it when people set their minds to doing what others think is the impossible. Power to you! :)

  9. Good for you! I'm proud of your talents and guts and willingness to work hard to get it done! There's a great future out there for you, guy!

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