Moving a Tiny House / by Evan Perry

Photos by Jessica Sinatra

Photos by Jessica Sinatra

It was a beautiful, bright, sunny day in early May when I saw the tiny house for the first time in person. With the exception of a ball hitch and license plate, the trailer, that resembles a pirate's treasure chest on wheels, was ready to roll to its new home on the south shore. Owners Chloe & Brandon had called me in the weeks leading up to the big move to document the epic first journey of their tiny home.

Brandon Tiny House

Much had led up to this day, including the unbelievably harsh winter of '14-'15 and even TV crews from HGTV. All told, Chloe & Brandon spent a year and a half of planning and construction just to be able to get to a point where they could move the house. The house was built on a flat-bed trailer that the couple was able to get on the cheap, disassemble, and build up into its current form. To accommodate the weight, Brandon replaced both axles and bolted the house into the metal frame as well as install a customized light package to connect to the tow vehicle.

The starting location was a residence in NH. A kind couple that Chloe & Brandon met through a Craig's List ad when the searched for places to build. The property and the couple turned out to be godsends for the tiny home's construction as they became fast friends, but it was time to move to a new parcel of land for the finishing touches and so Chloe & Brandon could be closer to their brick-and-mortar home. They often had to commute up to 4 hours a day to get up to NH and the new site, another benefactor off of Craig's List, would be only a 30 minute drive one way.

Truck and Tiny House

Once the Tiny House was ready to roll, Brandon needed to measure the weight of the house to keep the weight of future installations within the limit of the trailer's structural limits. Thankfully, there was a dump with a weigh station very close by the NH starting point. It turned out that the truck they rented to tow the house weighed much more than the house itself, coming in at about 7,500 pounds to the house's 6,600 pounds.

The ride was very smooth as Brandon eased the trailer forward for the first time. He was very hesitant at first, driving exceptionally slow, but the trailer could be towed safely on the highway at around 55 to 60 miles an hour. When he tried to exceed 60, the trailer started to sway and rock. Thankfully, there was no need for any complex maneuvers on the highway.

Chloe Tiny House

When we finally reached the destination after a frantic bathroom pull off and lunch, the next challenge became reaching the final resting place in the woods behind the house. Brandon, quite expertly, backed the trailer through a narrow gate and down a hill and hooked the trailer into its current home between few trees. Careful measurements were made to make sure that the sides and roof could be expanded in that position and once the home was jacked up and stabilized, Chloe and Brandon went to work pulling out the offices on the sides of the tiny house and hoisting the roof. Seeing this process in person in very incredible and dramatic. The house is actually bigger than it appears on TV once folded out and the interior seemed bloom into a beautiful space with a custom chandelier and spots for beds. The cubby for the rabbit was just too cool and the mini appliances were as adorable as they were functional.

Now Chloe & Brandon will set to work installing a rain water collection system, plumbing, electrical, and heat stove as well as several other features that will make the house livable. You can get updates about their work and their other cool projects at their new website.

Of course, here is the resulting video from the move! Enjoy!