Lloyd Faulkner has been working in construction since he was 12 years old, first with his dad in Arizona, where he grew up, then for a general contractor.
He later got a job as an estimator in California, then became the chief estimator at a construction site. That’s when he decided to open his own business.
“I started a furniture factory,” said Faulkner, 72. “I made high-end, custom furniture, lots of it for stars’ houses. I had it almost 30 years and had as many as 32 guys working for me.”
But in 2009, when the economy took a downward turn, Faulkner sold the yacht he was living on, closed the California factory and retired to Mississippi to help take care of a friend’s mom in Houston.
“I don’t have any direct family in Mississippi but I claim everyone I meet here as my family,” Faulkner said.
Not one to stay still, Faulkner began working for Charlie Tillman, building doors and cabinets for the optometrist’s rental properties.
“I’d been interested in the tiny house thing for a long time,” Faulkner said. “I decided to build one to see how it worked. I started in early 2015 and it took about six months to build. I could build one now in three months.”
Faulkner had a metal frame made for his tiny house and then did the rest himself.
“I did the wiring, the plumbing, the insulation, the roofing and I built all the cabinets,” he said. “Everything is built to code. In fact, everything is built to California code, so it’s probably over-built for Mississippi code. But I figure if you’re going to build it, build it right…”
The wood for the cabinets came out of an old building in Houston that Faulkner estimates to be 125 to 150 years old. The walls inside are made of pine and there’s no drywall or paint on them.
“I sort of like wood,” Faulkner said. “I’m a wood person. All the pine came from a local property. I milled it from logs, cut it and put it in here.”