Cody and Randi Hennigan were looking to make a big change in the way they lived.
The Texas couple had already made a series of small adjustments toward a more environmentally sustainable lifestyle; they grew 80 percent of their own food, they embraced environmentally friendly practices, and they made modifications to their home. Then the Hennigans looked around their standard home and decided they didn’t need that much space — they could live in a 170-square-foot tiny home.
“We heard about the tiny house movement, and it fit within what we were already doing,” Cody said. “We already spend most of our time outdoors.”
A change in home size complemented their desire for a change in scenery and their plan to move to Oregon. Randi is a college professor who teaches some of her classes online, and Cody was planning to change careers. By selling their home and downsizing to a home they could pay cash for, they drastically reduced their living expenses.
“We worked on the house every weekend for a year,” Cody said.
“By the time we were ready to move in, everything in the house was things we loved, and we had everything we knew we were going to need,” Randi said.
The Hennigans went through two cycles of paring down their possessions to fit themselves and their dog, Baxter, into a tiny home on wheels.
In total, the Hennigans spent about $25,000 building their tiny home. As part of their vision for the home, as well as the aesthetic, the Hennigans went for reclaimed or sustainable products. The front door was salvaged from one home, the floor from another, and the loft was milled from trees that had fallen in a storm.
The Hennigans partnered with Andersen Windows to design a set of windows that would be sustainable and provide sunlight, airflow and passive cooling through the home. Headquartered in Bayport, Andersen Windows makes their 100 Series Windows in a plant in Texas that was right down the street from the place the Hennigans had built their tiny home.
“We have 14 windows in our new house, which is more windows than we had in our old house,” Cody said. “By having so many windows, the house feels much bigger than it looks.”