This Student Built a Tiny Home To Avoid Paying For Halls

Student debt is at an all-time-high, and most of us would do just about anything to graduate without the financial burden. Sadly, for most of us, this will remain a distant dream long into our repayments, but for 25-year-old Joel Weber, that dream became a reality.

Overwhelmed by accommodation fees at the University of Texas, the student from Austin decided to take his living arrangements into his own hands. Using the skills he had acquired over the course of his degree thus far, Weber designed his very own tiny house.

Measuring 145 square feet and assembled entirely from reclaimed wood and materials donated by the local community.

The total cost of the project came to $20,000 (£12,800).

The majority of which he had acquired through part-time work after school, and thanks to a small mortgage, practically non-existent utility costs and the self-sufficient nature of his home, Weber now plans to graduate from university debt-free.

In its current state, the tiny house includes two separate loft beds, one for himself and one for a guest, stairs that double as storage space, a desk, a food store and a small kitchen, equipped with a sink, a propane-fuelled oven and stove, a water heater and a fridge.

Weber’s plans for the mobile home are far from over.

In the near future, he hopes to install a working toilet, a rain water collector and solar panels in order to make the project as environmentally friendly as possible.

The student drew his inspiration from some time spent in Central America as a teenager, where he was humbled by the simplicity of the indigenous people. and instil some perspective in his fellow students as to what they really need to be happy.

“I want to design things that are more sustainable,” Weber told “I’m interested in doing anything where I can spread living a simpler life.”

Ultimately, Weber wants to help others find the self-sufficiency, and therefore sustainability, that he has found in his tiny home.