ADAM GLOS '09 lives in a house so small it fits on a flatbed trailer.
Strapped by the high cost of rent, the Jackson, Wyoming, resident set out to build his own home last year. Constructed by hand and situated on a friend’s property, the 150-squarefoot dwelling is complete with electricity, running water, a woodstove and even a climbing wall up to his loft bedroom.
Glos recently took time out to discuss why he built the tiny house and how he might take it on the road soon.
Josh Anusewicz: What made you decide to build a tiny house for yourself?
Adam Glos: I moved to Wyoming shortly after graduation and had a number of odd jobs. Jackson is a beautiful place; I love it out here, but it’s very expensive. So, two years ago, I started thinking about building my own place.
JA: How long did the process take?
AG: I bought a used trailer first, in the fall of 2014. After fixing that up, I started building the house in the spring of 2015, living out of my truck last summer. It’s 20 feet long by eight feet wide and runs on a big, 15-amp extension cord. I plug it into my friend’s house and help pay for utilities.
JA: How much cheaper is it living in this house?
AG: My monthly cost of living is about one-third of what I was paying before. And I haven’t had to pay rent in about a year.
JA: You were an architectural studies major at Conn. How did that help you during construction?
AG: I’ve always loved construction and design, and I definitely brought skills I learned in college to this project. I thought about building my own house, but I’m not a professional carpenter; so it still has a “doit- yourself ” feel to it. The paneling on the inside of the house is old pallets that I tore up and restored. The loft beams that hold up where I sleep are from trees that I chopped down and stripped myself. I did have to do a lot of research for the electricity, plumbing and metal work, though—but I haven’t burned the place down yet.
JA: What do you do for work? What plans do you have for the future?
AG: I do a number of things: I’m an adaptive ski instructor and guide; work at a wilderness therapy organization, leading backpacking trips for troubled youth; and work at a physical therapy clinic. I’ve been thinking about going back to school for physical therapy or health sciences. That’s where the house gives me great flexibility. I can save money and put it towards school; depending on where the school is, I can take the house with me, or I can sell the house or rent it out.
JA: What do people think when friends find out you live in a tiny house?
AG: They want to know more about it and give me a lot of positive feedback. In Jackson, people my age are looking to live a more scaled-back lifestyle; they have college degrees but want to be able to ski most of the year. It’s very different from living in Boston or New York. I find it a very comfortable way to live, knowing everything I own fits in this small place. It may not be ideal for when I want to have kids and start a family, but it’s working great for me now.