Best Tiny Home Builders: Top 5 Contractors Most Recommended By Experts

Tiny homes have become a trend many Americans find appealing. They are inexpensive to build and maintain, often mobile, and encourage those who live in them to focus on a simpler life with fewer possessions. Some people choose a tiny home in order to live off the grid or travel from place to place. If you’re looking to start creating your dream space, we’re here to help! We’ve compiled a list of the best tiny home builders, according to 14 experts.

Looking to travel in your tiny home? According to a recent study, road trips are a popular vacation for many Americans, and the journey is often at least as important as the destination. A tiny home can act as a camping trailer, allowing you to explore the great outdoors at some of American’s top campsites.

If you’re planning to live off the grid, there are plenty of tiny houses that allow you to do just that! Some offer solar or wind power, composting toilets, and woodstoves as alternative options to gas and electricity. Add a garden to your setup to take it up a notch. A recent study finds that eight in 10 Americans are growing their own produce in order to cut expenses and stop relying so heavily on supermarkets. That’s just another way your tiny home can be more self-sufficient.

Another growing trend is living in one’s vehicle, for many of the same reasons people choose a tiny house. However, tiny homes offer more space and comfort, especially for families. If you’re looking into purchasing a tiny home, check out our list of the five best tiny builders below based on expert reviews. Have others to add to the list? Let us know in the comments!

Tiny house neighborhood
Photo by Karl Hedin

The List: Top 5 Tiny Homes, According to Experts

1. Tumbleweed Tiny House Company

Our number one spot goes to a company that shows up on expert-recommended lists again and again. The reasons to choose Tumbleweed as your tiny home builder are abundant.

Bob Vila says, “Tumbleweed has plenty to offer shoppers to streamline the buying process. First, the in-depth 3D tours allow shoppers to picture themselves in nearly every space within a model. Also, the interactive online design guide and quote features give shoppers an estimate of what their model might cost before they even speak to a company representative. There is also special pricing for military members, teachers, and first responders. Tumbleweed’s homes are limited to 26- and 30-foot models, but eco-friendly shoppers will be happy to know that Tumbleweed is Certified Green by TRA, which shows dedication to responsible building and energy efficiency.”

“Tumbleweed lives and works by the mantra, ‘Dream Big, Go Tiny!’ The company started in 1999, and is now the largest manufacturer of tiny house RVs in North America. Tumbleweed’s dedication to craftsmanship, innovation, and customer satisfaction makes them industry-leading designers. While working with this team, you’ll receive extensive feedback sessions and the assurance of RVIA certification. The brand even has 20 locations of tiny house hotels across the US so you can try out a Tumbleweed for yourself!” adds The Good Trade.

Homecrux especially likes Tumbleweed’s Cypress design, noting, “This tiny towable dwelling by Tumbleweed Tiny Houses has two bedrooms, a living room, a kitchen, a bathroom, and a small recessed porch. On the inside, there are wood-paneled walls and a ceiling to match the wood-style flooring. The hipped roof design also gives it an overwhelming appeal.”

2. Custom Container Living

Custom Container Living creates tiny homes out of — you guessed it — shipping containers. The Ascent writes, “If you’ve ever looked at a shipping container and thought, ‘I could do wonders with that!’ — well, you’re not alone. The folks at Custom Container Living turn cold metal boxes into inviting homes. Unlike some other companies on the list, tiny houses from Custom Container Living aren’t meant to be transported here to yonder; instead, once delivered, your new home will stay in its new home for good.”

Elemental Green says, “These shipping container cabins use specific 20 ft and 40 ft floor plans but can be designed to your specifications. Having previous experience in traditional home building, founder Robert Wagoner strives to create a floor plan and design that is unique to your personal needs with transparency in customization along the way from conception to final product.”

Treehugger touts its environmentally responsible qualities: “Custom Container Living homes come solar ready, and it’s not hard to set up your home to function entirely off the grid. In addition, containers have a very high ‘R’ rating, which means they retain heat and cool air for longer than standard homes. … Homes built from shipping containers offer the ultimate opportunity to reuse and recycle materials that would otherwise be scrapped.”

3. Escape Traveler

Escape Traveler offers regular models, custom models, plus all-electric eESCAPE units! ZDNET likes the XL model for taller folks, in particular: “One thing that appealed to me about the Traveler XL was the comfort it affords to taller people. It contains a vaulted ceiling that makes the space appear roomy, and it places the master bedroom on the first floor instead of limiting sleeping arrangements to just a space-crunching loft. The windows around the bedroom create a cozy nook that also lets you stretch without bumping into the ceiling. You can even make the bed without as much fuss as you would with a loft.”

Homedit says you can try it before you buy it. “If you want to try out a tiny house before building one, Escape Traveler is your answer. You can stay at one of their Escape Vacations and visit one of their pre-built homes.”

The Wayward Home prefers Escape’s Vista Boho model on wheels, noting RV hookups and the ability to live off-grid. “It weighs 8,500 pounds, so you need a truck with good towing capability to take it around the country. It features RV hookups and can also be made off-grid. It’s built with stunning craftsmanship, including pre-finished cedar vertical siding on the outside and pine on the inside.”

4. Tiny Heirloom

Tiny Heirloom is a great option for custom homes. “This tiny home builder designs each home from scratch, allowing customers to go through a collaborative design process to get every specification they want. Not exactly sure what it is that you want? Don’t worry; Tiny Heirloom also offers production homes,” writes FortuneBuilders.

Crow Survival likes the Vantage model: “We love the fact that the Vantage comes in a range of trailer lengths, 16′, 20′, and 24′. If you further want to customize your portable tiny home, then you can opt for one of the upgrade packages. Not only do these packages affect the aesthetics, but they also allow you to live completely off-grid.”

The Spruce says the builder is its favorite provider of pre-owned tiny houses. “In addition to offering eight models of tiny houses and custom options, Tiny Heirloom sells what it calls ‘Pre-Loved’ tiny houses. Of course, the availability of pre-owned tiny houses varies depending on how many homeowners are currently consigning their houses with Tiny Heirloom. When pre-owned homes are offered, however, they are available at a fraction of the price of new tiny houses. Plus, because these homes were built by Tiny Heirloom, they have all of the unique and high-quality features of the builder’s new tiny houses. This makes Tiny Heirloom’s pre-loved homes a reliable, sustainable, and more affordable alternative to new construction.”

5. Rocky Mountain Tiny Houses

Ready to simplify your life with a tiny house? “Architect Greg Parham founded Rocky Mountain Tiny Houses as soon as he finished building his own tiny home. His philosophy is all about keeping things minimal and building tiny houses is a way of encouraging others to simplify their lives,” praises Tiny House For Us.

The Tuttle Shuttle says you can choose to do some of the work yourself, or all of it, with help from Rocky Mountain: “In addition to complete builds, they also provide plans for some of their past models for those who want to build their own home, as well as shells for those who just want a head start. They have a very informative pricing page that clearly lays out their ballpark prices for both shells and complete builds based on the size of the unit. As an example, they would expect a 28 ft tiny house to cost about $20K – 33K for the shell only and between $65K – 80K for the entire build. They also offer something very unique that I haven’t seen elsewhere, and that is a fully custom DIY Kit. Rocky Mountain will provide you a trailer, insulation, framing, construction documents, etc. All of their kits come with the bare minimum, but if you want, they will literally provide everything you need to build a home yourself, from cabinets to appliances all the way down to paints and finishes. If you are a true DIYer, this is a super cool option that will take alot of the initial headache out of building your own home.”

The Spruce adds, “Tiny houses are available in a huge range of sizes and models—ranging from 12-foot trailers to 37-foot goosenecks—and pricing is more accessible than many other top builders. That said, Rocky Mountain still features high-quality building materials and finishes and a number of customization options.”

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