Minimalist couple get rid of most of their belongings to move into a tiny $72,000 bungalow on wheels and say it’s given them the financial and mental freedom they’ve always craved
- Tim Davidson, 30, and Sam Cosner, 28, moved into their tiny house, nicknamed Tiffany, three years ago
- Couple now bought up 1.5 acre land to start an off-grid community in Florida where they can add four houses
- Have moved into a second Octogon-shaped tiny house while their first home gets renovated
A couple who chucked away 80 per cent of their belongings to downsize to a miniature home have now bought an entire lakeside peninsula to create an off-grid tiny house community.
Tim Davidson, 30 and Sam Cosner, 28, drove their 270sq ft tiny house, nicknamed Tiffany, to the 1.5 acre peninsula in Sarasota, Florida last month, after they first moving into the home three years ago.
The couple are now planning to set-up a self-sustaining tiny house community on the peninsula, which they bought for $200,000, and have already finished construction of their second tiny home on the island – a 320 square ft octagon house, which can withstand category five hurricanes.
Tim Davidson, 30 and Sam Cosner, 28, on their 1.5 acre peninsula in Sarasota, Florida last month after they first moved into the home three years ago. They have moved into their second tiny home (pictured) as their first is being renovated
Pictured, the living area and kitchen of the Octogon house where the couple live. Despite getting rid of most of their belongings, they’ve still kept a TV and PlayStation
Pictured: Sam working on the bed in their tiny house in Florida after they chucked 80 per cent of their possessions away. She kept her laptop (pictured) to work
Pictured: Octagon house on Shellmate Island where the couple are now staying. The couple are now planning to set-up a self-sustainable tiny house community on the peninsula which they bought for $200,000, and have already finished construction of their second tiny home on the island – a 320 square ft octagon house, which can withstand category five hurricanes
They hope to create Florida’s first off-grid tiny house community, starting with their home which is five times smaller than the average American abode.
And despite admitting that some people thought they were ‘crazy’ when they revealed their radical downsizing plans three years ago, the couple have no regrets, and say their miniature lifestyle has allowed them to travel to far-flung destinations and be among the first of their friends to get on the property ladder.
Sales agent, Tim explained the island has enough room for four or five houses.
‘We have plenty of room for neighbors to come and join us here’ he said.
‘We’re trying to renovate Tiffany so she’s completely off grid and solar powered – that’s the first task.
They hope to create Florida’s first off-grid tiny house community starting with their home which is five times smaller than the average American abode.
Pictured: The house, nicknamed Tiffany in its former location before they drove it to Florida
Sam is pictured cooking in Tiffany, they say they gained a lot of financial freedom after moving
Pictured: Tim and Sam in Tiffany. The couple moved in in 2017 with pet cat Oliver, 4
The couple are currently living on the island in their new self-designed 320 sq. ft octagon-shaped tiny house, built by Deltec Homes for $90,000 this year
Pictured: Tim (left) and Sam (right) working inside the tiny house where they live
Pictured: Tiffany the house on Shellmate Island where they live. The couple bought a 1.5 acre lot
‘The island has lots of fruit trees on it, so there’s scope for us to become self-sufficient.
‘Moving into a tiny house has given us so much mental and financial freedom.
‘We’ve been able to spend money that we’d have had to use for mortgages to travel to places like Cuba and South Africa and to invest in our retirement.
‘We’ve struggled all our lives to have this much freedom. I can’t envisage wanting to change our lifestyle ever.’
The couple moved into their first tiny house in 2017 with their pet cat, Oliver, 4, after settling on a miniature home as a compromise between continuing to squander their wages on renting and committing to a 30-year mortgage on a traditional house.
They picked up Tiffany, a 270 sq. ft bungalow for just $72,000, almost three times less than the amount they would have had to fork out for a normal sized house in the area.
Pictured: The bedroom (left) in the Octagon house and the living area (right)
. Pictured: The cosy bathroom where the couple wash inside the tiny house
Peekaboo! The couple moved into the home with their pet cat Oliver, who is now four
However, to fit into their new home Tim and Sam had to let go of 80 per cent of their possessions in less than five months, including keepsakes with sentimental value.
The couple went to extreme lengths to shed themselves of excess belongings, with Tim uploading most of their photos onto the Cloud and Sam selling nearly all her furniture at a marathon garage sale.
Health coach, Sam said: ‘It was a little difficult at first, but it ended up being very liberating.
‘We download most of our books onto Kindles, but we still have the physical copies of a few favorites.
The stunning home where the couple live on a peninsula in Florida includes 1.5acres of land
Pictured: Sam and Tim outside Tiffany the house, the first home they moved to
Pictured: The kitchen in the Octagon house, the couple chucked away 80% of their belongings to fit
Clever storage solutions help keep free space in the cosy tiny house – pictured are draws under the stairs
‘If we really want a new item we’ll buy it, but we have a rule where we have to get rid of something already in the house.
‘Tim tries to throw away two items for every one new item he brings into the home.
‘When we told people our plans lots of them looked at us like we were crazy, but luckily we had other people around us who were like, “Do what you want if it makes you happy”.’
‘We moved in with four boxes between us and we’ve not looked back since.’
Pictured: The bedroom in the Octagon house with a view of the pennisula
Pictured: The living area of Tiffany (left) with Oliver the cat looking our the window (right)
Pictured: Bathroom and utility room in Octagon house where the couple now live
Pictured: Sam working in bed with Oliver in Tiffany which is being renovated
The couple are currently living on the island in their new self-designed 320 sq. ft octagon-shaped tiny house built by Deltec Homes for $90,000 this year.
With a tiled shower room and 1920s style custom designed sink, the miniature home is an upgrade on humble Tiffany, which is currently being renovated in order to become off-grid.
Tim said: ‘Tiny houses are super affordable for those wanting to buy their first home.
‘You can get a fully fitted one for as little as $20,000 to $30,000 or $10,000 if you’re not bothered about a bathroom.
Pictured the bed as they unpacked and moved into the new home
Pictured: The bedroom in Tiffany which is currently being refurbished to the couple can live off grid
Pictured: Tiffany and Octagon house on Shellmate Island. There’s room for four or five more homes
‘We were probably one of the first people I know to purchase a home outright.
Sam added: ‘A tiny house won’t last as long as a traditional home, but they’re still very tough.
‘Tiffany isn’t hurricane resistant, but she has gone through a severe storm before and survived.
‘Sometimes it can be a bit of a squeeze, but we’re resourceful. If we have friends over, they sit at the counter and we sit on the stairs.
‘And now we have the island, there’s plenty of space outside if it gets too squished.’