The Big Idea

Why Tiny Houses?

We at PAD believe in the revolutionary idea that your life is for living.

Tiny house living offers a way to make your living space serve your life, instead of the other way around. It’s not about having less, it’s about having more – more money and time to devote to the things that are really important to you, instead of spending it all on keeping an enormous roof over your head just because it’s the size you grew up with.

It’s about taking all the resources you used to pour into your housing, and devoting them to something more meaningful to you, like travel, time to spend with friends and family, or just slowing down the pace of your life. It’s about getting closer to an environmental footprint you can think of as ethical and sustainable. It’s about strengthening your community, figuring out how to share resources…and discovering that it’s actually more fun that way.

What is a Tiny House?

“Tiny house” is a broad term, but the typical tiny house is around eight and a half feet wide by 12 to 20 feet long, and built on a flatbed trailer so it can move with you when you move. Anything under 200 square feet might be considered a tiny house. Some might be way smaller, some might be larger, and sometimes they aren’t built to be portable. Since they’re often customized to the people living in them, the possibilities are pretty much endless.

Who Are Tiny Houses For?

Women, men, couples, and even families of all ages have found ways to make tiny house living change their lives for the better. Some people live in tiny houses full time, and others use them as seasonal housing, “mother-in-law” apartments, guest bedrooms, or home offices.

What Does PAD Do?

PAD wants to help you make your tiny house dream a reality. We run educational workshops to teach you how to build and design your own tiny house, and sell books and plans of tiny house designs for you to use or start from and customize. We also do one-on-one tiny house consulting of all shapes and sizes. We can talk you through your toughest questions for an hour at a time, or design and build you a tiny house from start to finish.

PAD co-founder Dee Williams taught herself to design and build her own tiny house from scratch, and discovered that the power to change her life was, literally, in her own two hands. We have a special place in our hearts for the Do-It-Yourself tiny house dreamers, because we want to help people discover that they each have that same power too.

PAD was founded in 2009 by tiny house pioneer Dee Williams, who has lived in her tiny house for eight years, and master carpenter Katy Anderson. Since Katy has moved on to focus on high-end finish carpentry, team PAD is now Dee, Joan Grimm and some key partners with tiny house expertise that keep PAD at the forefront of the central issues of the tiny house community. We tackle it all, from design and construction, to housing codes and insurance, to sustainability and community development. We operate primarily out of Portland, Oregon, serve the northwest tiny house community physically, and connect with the world-wide tiny house community virtually.

Click to meet the members of Team PAD.