Today my guest is Jody Brady. In 2014, after living in a series of traditionally scaled houses, Jodi and her husband Bill decided it was time to “right-size” their living space. They designed and built our tiny home in the Blue Ridge mountains of Virginia, and the've been living tiny for two and a half years.

In this interview, we get into what it’s like to go tiny as a couple at retirement age, but who certainly aren’t “retired” in the traditional sense. We’ll talk about what “rightsizing” is and how you can get rid of things that you no longer need that are standing in your way.

Favorite Quotes:

“I want to be rich in people and experiences and very careful about how many material things I accumulate.”

-Jody Brady

“I was such a bad fit to be in a cubicle, in a basement, with no windows, for so much of my life”

-Jody Brady

Photos of Jody and Bill's Tiny House:

00:01 - 00:40

Ethan Waldman: Welcome to the Tiny House Lifestyle Podcast. I'm your host, Ethan Waldman, and today my guest is Jody  Brady. In 2014, after living in a series of traditionally scaled houses, Jody and her husband Bill decided it was time to right size their living space. They designed and built their tiny home in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia, and they've been living tiny for 2 and a half years. I'm really excited about this interview because we really get into what it's like to go tiny as a couple who are at retirement age but certainly aren't retired and don't

00:40 - 01:18

Ethan Waldman: consider themselves to be retired. I asked them what is their definition of right sizing and I think it's a really interesting term and an interesting way of looking at the process of getting rid of things that you no longer need and things that are standing in the way of you living your best life. Jody  and Bill are also deeply involved in the sustainability movement. And we talk about how living in a tiny house has allowed them to live more sustainably. And we also talk about how the tiny house has improved their relationship with family and friends

01:18 - 01:46

Ethan Waldman: and enabled them to be more present in the lives of the people that they care about. And we even talk about how they have guests. Any grandparent will tell you that they love to have space for their grandchildren and children to come visit. So we'll talk about how Jody  and Bill are able to host their family and friends even though they only live in a tiny house. It's a really great interview and I hope you stick around. Jody  Brady, Welcome to the show.

01:47 - 01:48

Jody Brady: Oh, so happy to talk with you,

01:48 - 01:55

Ethan Waldman: Ethan. I'm so happy that you're here. I was hoping we could start out and just have you explain what is right sizing.

01:57 - 02:30

Jody Brady: I think 1 of the easiest ways to explain it is the epiphany we had, literally sitting 1 day in our family room and we were in a beautiful house in a suburb of Washington and we had had our children had moved out and we'd had relatives lived with us and they'd moved out and we were sitting on the sofa and something made 1 of us ask the other person, when's the last time you went in the living room? And I was like, oh, I don't know. It's probably been weeks. And then we started going through all

02:30 - 03:06

Jody Brady: the rooms of the house and realized neither of us went in the extra bedrooms. Neither of us had even been in the basement. And we were basically living in 3 rooms of a house that was so big and we were paying to heat it, cool it, maintain it, and we were working, both working full-time jobs we didn't like. And we had that sudden realization that this house owned us. We didn't own it. And we decided it was time to change. We were using way too many resources, including our own time, to maintain a giant house that

03:06 - 03:09

Jody Brady: we didn't even live in for the most part.

03:09 - 03:18

Ethan Waldman: So it was kind of the realization that the space that you were inhabiting was far too large and costly for your current needs.

03:19 - 03:58

Jody Brady: Oh yeah, and I mean, it was a combination of so many things when we realized it was taking all of our time, literally, by both of us having to work full time, And it was taking so many resources, like these realizations were all happening at the same time, we were using all this fossil fuel to heat and cool this house that we for rooms we didn't even go in. And then the financial too, I mean, the fact that it was, it literally ate up all of our money. And so between money, time, and environmental resources, it

03:58 - 04:06

Jody Brady: didn't make any sense to be doing all of that for a house we didn't need. We needed the 3 rooms we were living in, not the rest of the house.

04:08 - 04:36

Ethan Waldman: Now, I think that many people have had epiphanies like that, but not actually taken the steps that you took, which was to build a tiny house. I'm curious how you found out about tiny houses, and what was it that convinced you, or what was the catalyst that took you from that realization that our house is too big and too expensive to we're doing it, we're selling it, we're building a tiny house.

04:37 - 05:13

Jody Brady: Well, we sort of went about it in a way that we gave ourselves time to figure out what it was we wanted. We didn't know about tiny houses when this happened. What we did know about was we were obsessed with the Department of Energy solar decathelons, which we had. I don't know if people know about it, but college teams compete and they make these small houses that are 100% solar powered. And we had stumbled across the first 1 in like 2002 on the National Mall. And we were both stunned that houses could be that beautiful, that

05:13 - 05:44

Jody Brady: small, that efficient, and use no resources. So that's really what started us on the road of understanding that there was a different way of living. We just hadn't seen it before. So we started going to them every 2 years. We even went out to, when we were on a cross country trip, we went to 1 in California because now they have them around different places. So that was the start. But what we did was when we had that realization, we decided the first step we had to take was just to sell that house. So we were,

05:45 - 06:16

Jody Brady: My husband had a feeling the market wasn't going well. And so we sold at the peak of the market in 2008. And we made a lot of money on that house because we'd fixed it up. And it allowed us to quit our job. So right away we changed the whole equation because we had time and we didn't have the financial needs we did and we had a relative ask us if we would fix up their condo and it Was a perfect next step So we moved into a two-bedroom condo while we were fixing it up to

06:16 - 06:53

Jody Brady: sell for them, and realized that was more space than we needed. So over a series of years, we tried out a smaller apartment and rented it and said, nope, that's too big. And then we tried a 1 bedroom apartment and said, we don't even need this much space and by around that time we had found out about tiny houses and and the whole movement and so we signed up to be volunteers at at the tiny house conference in Charlotte that Ryan Mitchell puts on and we thought well, we'll just that was the first time we stepped

06:53 - 07:06

Jody Brady: inside a tiny house and the first time we talked to people who lived in them and That was the real tiny point turning point And we came home and ordered a trailer and said, we're going to do this.

07:07 - 07:17

Ethan Waldman: I love that. So you, you really also right sized your tiny house by stepping down. You didn't just go straight from a big house to a tiny house on wheels.

07:17 - 07:38

Jody Brady: Oh, no, no. There were several iterations in between that we tested out. And it really gave us the confidence to know, yeah, we paid attention to how we lived and the spaces we lived in. So by the time we designed this tiny house, it really fits us like a glove. It wouldn't work for everybody, but it is the way we live.

07:39 - 08:11

Ethan Waldman: Yeah. And I don't want to make any assumptions about your age, but I know that you have grown children. And I think of my parents who are by no means hoarders, you know, they have a very neat and organized house and it's not giant, but there's so much stuff like furniture that has been accumulated over the years, memorabilia, art, all these things. And I wonder, was it hard to downsize that stuff? Because I'm assuming that you weren't able to take it all with you to the tiny house.

08:12 - 08:45

Jody Brady: No, not at all. And I don't mind talking about age. I'm 61 and I have 4 grandchildren. So yeah, it took us a long time to get to this point. I admire the people who are younger and figure this out. But we had a lot of stuff because we had had a, we owned a series of 6 houses each, you know, and they tended to get bigger over time. And when you have a big house, it's easy to fill it. So when it came, when we decided it was time to sell that last house, The thing

08:45 - 09:23

Jody Brady: that really helped me was to say everything we sell is part of the dream and getting away from basically the work we didn't want to be doing. It's a step towards the direction we want to go in. And as long as I kept that in my mind, I just, I worked really hard. I mean, I want to say that too, if you put some effort into it and made sure we sold everything for the most we could. So that was part of not having to work again was maximizing the value out of everything and just keeping

09:23 - 09:55

Jody Brady: the mindset this is part of where we're going. This is not something to be sad about. This is part of the dream and What we came to think of it as editing your life. And that process actually made us realize that we didn't really even care about most of the things that were around us. It wasn't that hard. And the things that we really cared about, we found ways to keep. Like we had 6 giant boxes of pictures and we went through them all which took a while figured out which ones really mattered to us and

09:55 - 10:29

Jody Brady: had them all digitized and so that was gone we we went through all these CDs we had hundreds of CDs and decided the ones we actually really listened to and digitized them and then made a lot of money selling them. And we went through the books and unless it was a book written by a friend or I have a real affinity for antique books. All the old books got to stay. Yeah, we realized we could check them out of the library anytime, so we sold all the books. And anyway, we got really good at figuring out

10:29 - 10:57

Jody Brady: what would sell on eBay, what would sell on Craigslist. We sent things to auction houses. That was some of the art. We had inherited some art and we just realized if we maximize what we get for it, it wasn't something we'd ever picked out. So anyway, that was another process and another journey. And it took it, it took a while, but because we kept stepping down, we had the time to just keep selling things.

10:58 - 11:03

Ethan Waldman: So do you have antique books in your tiny house? Is that 1 thing that made the cut?

11:03 - 11:39

Jody Brady: Okay, the things that made the cut that are sort of ridiculous in a tiny house are all of 1 of my grandmother's silver. I have beautiful antique silver. I have my other grandmother's china set. All the antique books. Mementos from family and from our travel, we found ways to work them in. Yeah, so those are the things that we decided mattered to us. So yes, we have things that you might not find in the average tiny house, but we figured out a way to display them. Like we have shelves over most of the windows and so

11:39 - 11:56

Jody Brady: I, you know, I don't often need to use the giant silver basket of my grandmother, But it's up there for me to look at every day. So, yeah, I think you can figure out a way once you decide what it is that really matters to you to work it into that design.

11:57 - 12:01

Ethan Waldman: Yeah, absolutely. You can keep the things that are meaningful to you within reason.

12:02 - 12:14

Jody Brady: Yeah, yeah. And as time went on, it got easier and easier. That's what I have to say. It seems daunting when you start and you're like, how can I get rid of any of this? And if you just start doing it, it gets easier.

12:14 - 12:42

Ethan Waldman: There's definitely a momentum that can build up when you get in that mindset. And I think what you said earlier is really important, which is keeping your end goal in mind so that you don't have to feel sad or feel like, oh, I have to get rid of this stuff because I can't have it anymore. It's, I need to get this out of my way so I can start on this ideal life or to start on this new path that's going to be just better for my life.

12:42 - 13:27

Jody Brady: Oh yeah. I mean, it started to feel like less things equals freedom. That was really underscored to us. There was less to haul around, less to take care of, less to sort out. Yeah, it actually became something I enjoyed doing. I didn't dread it. I was like, we don't use this? Nope, not staying here. And we're at the point now where we financed everything. So I give away a lot more things than I did in the beginning when we were raising the money to make the leap. But yeah, I still feel that way now that I

13:27 - 13:37

Jody Brady: come to see life in a very different way as, You know, I want to be rich in people and experiences and I want to be very careful about how much, how many material things I accumulate.

13:38 - 13:59

Ethan Waldman: Now, I've met you and Bill in person and I know that you both care a lot about sustainability. And so I'm curious, you know, what were you doing before you were living in a tiny house in terms of living sustainably? And how has the tiny house enabled you to kick that up a notch and live more sustainably?

14:00 - 14:37

Jody Brady: Oh, that was a big part of the switch. I have been doing a lot of reading and thinking and came to be sort of horrified by the way we were living and the resources we were using and became more and more convinced that we had to reduce our reliance on fossil fuel. But we couldn't do that while we were in a house. So that was part of what made that whole transition easier, is that we did not want to be living the way we were living anymore. So getting rid of the house was really the big

14:37 - 15:09

Jody Brady: first step. And then continuing to educate ourselves. And I was in a program at the time called Just Faith. And 1 of the big questions that was asked there was how much is enough? It was it's literally the name of a book but it was it was also something that we talked about all the time like how much is enough for you to live a good life? How many resources more than that should you be consuming. And so as I started thinking that way, I knew I didn't want to live the way I was living. And

15:09 - 15:50

Jody Brady: so it's just been a continuing education. And we both specialize in different things. And In the meanwhile, I've become a Virginia master naturalist because I want to learn more about healthy ecosystems and how we can be part of that. And Bill sort of focused on learning more about renewable energy. And we're not even where we want to be with that but in terms of designing this that was important to us so we actually spent money to make ourselves more sustainable. So we have a solar generator that gives us most of our energy. It's a Soulman classic

15:50 - 16:24

Jody Brady: by Soul Solutions. We have an alcohol burning stove because we made the decision that we didn't want any propane here. And I know that that's a solution for a lot of tiny house people, especially mobile ones. But since we were trying to get away from any fossil fuel, it made it harder. But we eventually found this great alcohol burning stove. And then we have a really efficient wood burning stove that gives us most of the heat in the bulk of the winter. We have the Kimberley by Unforgettable Fire. And I'm trying to think of what other

16:24 - 16:59

Jody Brady: things we do here. Composting toilet. Once I started reading about how much drinking water we were flushing around every day, I was like, I never want a flushing toilet in my house again. So, yeah, more things even than I can think of now. Starting to grow our own food, not using pesticides, not using fertilizers, planting native plants. So it's like a whole living way of thinking, a new way of thinking about how we live and what we consume and what we do to the planet.

17:00 - 17:32

Ethan Waldman: It's wonderful. And you've really touched on what I think is 1 of the big paradoxes of tiny house living, which is that propane question, because it is difficult to, if you want to be off grid in a tiny house and you live in a cold climate, your options for heat are really wood or propane. And, you know, as you can probably attest to, wood stoves are wonderful, but they require your presence to maintain that heat source.

17:32 - 17:32

Jody Brady: Exactly.

17:33 - 17:41

Ethan Waldman: You can't leave your house for a week and turn the thermostat on on your wood stove and expect to come back to a warm house.

17:41 - 18:16

Jody Brady: Right, right. And so the way we've gotten around that, when I told you that we get most of everything is done on our solar. So like lights, plugs, refrigerator, all of those things. But we have a couple plugs. So Bill wired the house for the solar and he also, we have a separate wiring that actually connects to the electricity at our friend's house. And because things like hot water heaters and portable space heaters use so much electricity, we were at the point where we were worried about spending so much more on solar. We would have had

18:16 - 18:48

Jody Brady: to double. We were already spending like 5,000 on our solar and we would have had to go to 10,000. And we were like, let's make sure all this works before we double the price of our solar. So we actually draw for those things from the grid electricity of our friend's house. And, you know, that won't work for everybody, like if you're on the road or you're in a place where you have to be totally off grid. But for us, it was the compromise that made made financial sense and just also functional sense.

18:50 - 19:29

Ethan Waldman: You and Bill have grown children, you've had successful careers, and most people in your position in life seem to be moving toward the superlative version of things, their dream home, their dream car, And this is usually synonymous with luxury and size and, you know, the accumulated wealth of having worked for all those years. And I would imagine that some of your peers would see tiny house living as kind of a step in the opposite direction. And I'm curious, how do you deal with that, you know, those questions or those those sideways glances?

19:29 - 20:05

Jody Brady: Oh, most mostly I just I just laugh. I mean, because I actually had people warn me, tell me that we were making a serious mistake and no 1 would want to live like this. And I was just like, hey, I'm not telling anybody else to live like this. But the year we spent building this house was just incredible for us. It was hard work, but we loved it and we don't want to live any other way. But what it's given us is like we love to travel. We always have. But now that we don't have big

20:05 - 20:43

Jody Brady: expenses, and we have a house that doesn't need a lot of maintenance, and we have time, that's what we've been able to do. We've driven cross country twice. We've, We just got back from a month in Greece. It was amazing. And we never could have done that when we were both working full-time jobs. And we wouldn't even be doing it now if we had reached retirement age and then still had all those other expenses. So, it's given us time, and it's given us the ability to do things we love, like wander. We spent 8 weeks in

20:43 - 20:52

Jody Brady: Panama, we walked the Hadrian Walls Trail, We've walked part of the Camino in Spain. So that's what matters to us.

20:53 - 20:58

Ethan Waldman: Right. So you've traded your large home for large travel.

20:59 - 21:36

Jody Brady: Mm-hmm. And also I want to say the family thing. I was able to, we were able to babysit our first granddaughter for the first 2 years of her life. And we never could have done that if we were still locked in jobs and paying for a house. Our son-in-law was in medical school and our daughter was working and we just jumped in and said, hey, we'll move to Philly and watch the baby. And that got me back into writing fiction because I started writing during her nap time. So it makes a much more flexible life. And

21:36 - 21:56

Jody Brady: then sadly, both of our mothers got sick around the same time. And we had the freedom to be with them the last year of their lives. And, you know, we literally lived with Bill's mother for a while and and we were able to help take care of my mom. So yeah, so travel but also it allowed us to focus on our family.

21:57 - 22:19

Ethan Waldman: That's so great. And you know, the word retired and retirement, it just, it does not Seem to me to be an accurate descriptor of the life that you're living though. You're not You don't have your full-time jobs anymore Do you have a word or a term that you consider yourself to be?

22:19 - 22:54

Jody Brady: Well, I told my husband that we can't say we're retired because people think then that you actually worked at a job long enough that you have somebody paying you to do this and we don't. So yeah, and I don't even think of us as not working because, you know, I still take on odd jobs every now and then and we're constantly working on projects. So I'm trying to think of what I would just call it living. We do a lot more living and a lot less working. I used to work in a cubicle staring at a

22:54 - 23:19

Jody Brady: computer for 8 hours a day. So yeah, I would say what we're doing now is living. And I do a lot of volunteer work now around the naturalism thing. And so I'm not getting paid for it, but I've been able to work on stream monitoring and planting trees and planting parks. And so, no, I don't get money for it, but it's amazing work.

23:20 - 23:27

Ethan Waldman: And you say you're getting to do work that is actually meaningful to you and it doesn't matter that you're not getting paid to do it.

23:27 - 24:02

Jody Brady: Oh yeah, and I mean, the lifestyle to me, because we can, I mean, we can afford to do that now? And, you know, I still take jobs and earn money. But in general, our expenses are so low that, you know, if we keep them low like this, we're we don't have to have jobs like we used to. And I was going to say something and I forgot it. It went away. Oh, I like to be outside. I mean, I would probably, except when it's raining and cold, I don't like being cold. I like to be outside.

24:03 - 24:21

Jody Brady: So I was such a bad fit to be in a cubicle, in a basement with no windows for too much of my life. So now I'm, whether it's paid or not, I'm outside a lot more than I'm inside, which makes me happy.

24:22 - 24:35

Ethan Waldman: LESLIE KENDRICK You've also become tiny house teachers. And I've seen you in action at a couple of different tiny house conferences, and you give a great tiny house composting toilet presentation.

24:37 - 24:38

Jody Brady: The poop scoop on poop.

24:40 - 24:45

Ethan Waldman: The scoop on poop. So what composting toilet system do you use in your tiny house?

24:45 - 25:25

Jody Brady: Where the bucket system. So 2 buckets inside a box that we, you know, we built to fit in our bathroom size and 1 has to cover and then we've done a couple things to kind of refine it and make it even easier. So we use these things called bio bags inside the bucket where the black waste goes. And it keeps it also clean and they degrade. And then we use a urine diversion system. So we have the, what is it, the separate eco privy. So that for us, it works great to have, we can just have

25:25 - 25:52

Jody Brady: the urine go offsite into a mulch pit. And then we compost. We have a series of big barrels where we put the black waste and it stays in them for a year and then we actually move it to an outdoor compost pile. And then we're just super careful with it, so we only use that on ornamental plants. And then we have a separate composting system with all the food and yard scraps that goes on our vegetable garden.

25:52 - 25:55

Ethan Waldman: And you have the space that allows you to do that on the land where you're parked?

25:56 - 26:36

Jody Brady: Yes, so we were invited to take a corner of our friend's land so it's kind of rural and yeah so we're you know pretty compact but we have enough room to have a vegetable garden and our compost set up and lots of gardens. I love to garden. And that's 1 of the big things that have changed with me as I become a total advocate of planting only native plants that support the wildlife that's around you. But yeah, I have room to garden and I apparently love to move stones around. So I'm always in the woods. We

26:36 - 26:44

Jody Brady: have a lot of stones here and then building walls and paths and piling up stones. I think it's my therapy.

26:45 - 26:52

Ethan Waldman: Yes, chop wood carry water, right? Yes. Was finding that land to park your tiny house difficult?

26:53 - 27:26

Jody Brady: No, we were actually looking to buy land. We kept having a problem finding something small. Everybody around this area, We knew we had to get farther out than we had been living in the DC area. And they were selling off old farms and giant tracts of land. And we didn't want that much, and we couldn't afford that much. And we had a friend who kept saying, or you could build on my land or you could build on my land. And 1 day she sat us down and just said, I don't think you're listening. I actually would

27:26 - 28:04

Jody Brady: like you to build on my land. And it just made so much sense when she said that because she's a single woman our age and it's a sort of remote setting and it works out great for both of us. So we have this beautiful setting at the edge of a forest and she has people around to help with things and we pay her, you know, just a modest amount but it, you know, she gets money and we have a really affordable, beautiful place to live. So Yeah, I think sometimes it's, you know, the answer is already

28:04 - 28:12

Jody Brady: in front of you and you're just not listening, which was the case with us for like the year we looked for land and she was there the whole time offering.

28:14 - 28:46

Ethan Waldman: That's so funny. We had a similar thing, not quite exactly the same, but the whole time we were building the house, in the back of my mind, I knew that my cousins had this amazing piece of land next to their house where there had been another small cabin that had been destroyed and they had bought the land. And it was always in my head as, you know, if we can't find a place, we could always ask to park on their land. And then at some point, I just realized like, this isn't that place is not a

28:46 - 29:09

Ethan Waldman: last resort. That is like our first choice. This is an amazing piece of land. And we asked and they said, of course. But it was just, you know, flipping the script to, oh, we can always fall back on this family or friend if we can't find something else to actually seeing that as your number 1 choice and the benefits of getting to live near somebody and kind of have your own tiny little community.

29:09 - 29:50

Jody Brady: Oh yeah, and this little spot of land on the mountain that we have is pretty close to paradise, if you ask me. Sometimes the bears get a little close, and that's a little nerve-wracking. But the rest of it is really just beautiful. Just talking about when you have a spot like us, and you don't have to move, We set it up that way. I mean, there's always the possibility. We are what Bill likes to call the pre-legal state. Like it's not, you know, It's on wheels so that it's not a house because houses in Virginia can't

29:50 - 30:29

Jody Brady: be this small. And but we've just created a whole setting here, which is part of why we can live outside. We actually built a separate foundation built screen house, which is illegal outbuilding and land like this because it's under 200 square feet. And so it's like our outdoor living room and kitchen and dining room. So we spend a lot of time in there. And then we actually have a deck that wraps around 3 sides of the house. So it's like a whole nother that's where we grill and eat and grow all of our herbs. So if

30:29 - 30:54

Jody Brady: you are lucky enough to have a spot like this, you know, where you can sort of design to the site. It's, and, and because we knew we weren't going to move it, our house, that's 1 of the things that's different about ours is it's 12 feet wide. It could, it can be moved. We just have to get a wide load permit, but it really changes the space and how you can lay things out to go wider.

30:54 - 31:12

Ethan Waldman: Yeah. And I feel like that's the big design challenge of tiny houses is how do you make it not feel like you're standing in this like tunnel long tube, because so many of them are, you know, only 7 and a half or 8 feet wide and then, you know, 20 25 feet long.

31:13 - 31:46

Jody Brady: Yeah, and for us, we We didn't, you know, we were old people. We didn't want a loft that we had to climb a ladder to. And my husband's not really comfortable in small spaces like that anyway. So we wanted a ground floor bedroom. So going wider like this made it so easy to just we have a bed, you know, that's in that section of the house and then the other thing I would say that helps make the house feel so big and surprises people is that we have 3 doors so there's never people walking past each

31:46 - 32:08

Jody Brady: other to get out. You know, you can get out 3 sides of the house. So we have 3 and they're glass. So they let in all this light and you see the outside. And then we have 11 windows. So If you can figure out in your design to have, we have tons of cross ventilation and tons of light, and it just makes the house feel bigger.

32:09 - 32:28

Ethan Waldman: When you were talking about hosting guests, it made me think of another almost stereotype that I think of about grandparents, which is that they always want to have lots of room and extra bedrooms for when their children and grandchildren come to visit. So how do you navigate that? How do you host guests?

32:29 - 33:00

Jody Brady: Well, first of all, the grandchildren love it here, and they come and spend at least 2 weeks in the summer. And they love the tiny house. For them, it's so exciting. And we're actually going to make it easier. Right now, we just have the old love seat that we had and I think we're going to invest in a sofa bed so that we could just pull it out. So right now when they come, they just want to stay in the house with us. And 1 of them sleeps on the sofa, and we put up an inflatable

33:00 - 33:34

Jody Brady: mattress, and we all stay in the tiny house together. But when we have other guests, 1 of the things that we did is we, part of our rent is actually the attic room of our friend's house so that we have a legal address. And I guess, you know, our thinking is if we were ever challenged about our house, which is legally a travel trailer, that we have a place that has a bed and a little refrigerator and it's our legal address. So, what we do when we have people come and stay is they love to stay

33:34 - 33:44

Jody Brady: in the tiny house and we go up and stay in the attic of our friend's house. So if you come to visit, you get the tiny house to yourself.

33:45 - 34:00

Ethan Waldman: So 1 thing that I like to ask all my guests is what are 3 resources? It could be books, movies, TV shows, even I've had lots of musical recommendations too. Just things that have inspired you along the journey.

34:01 - 34:33

Jody Brady: Well, I guess the first 1 that comes to mind right away is what I started with talking to you about our inspiration, the Solar Decathlon. And there's like a site, I think it's like solar And they now have them all around the world. They're international, but they still have them, I think, every 2 years different places in the US. And even if you can't make it to 1, if you go to that site and you look at some of these designs and you see the technology that's already out there to make living off grid not

34:33 - 35:16

Jody Brady: even just possible, to make it enviable. So I would say that's 1. 0, and actually, Bill reminded me, his earliest inspiration was this book that was actually published in 1979 called The Little House. It's by Leslie Armstrong. And it was about scaling down and designing so that people who wanted a house but didn't have money, I mean that was real emphasis, but the design is impeccable and it was flexible. And that was his first obsession with going, I think I want to buy a house. So we hadn't had 1 for a while and he actually found

35:16 - 35:54

Jody Brady: 1 on eBay. But it's a remarkable book, way ahead of its time. And let me think, oh, and I should give a shout out to Dan Loesch, his tiny house design and construction guide. That was actually sort of our overview of how to build the house. We'd done a lot of renovation work on all the houses we owned. We would fix up a house and then eventually sell it for a lot more money. But we never built something from scratch. So that book was just a great, you know, sort of like, these are the steps, this

35:54 - 36:06

Jody Brady: is what to do. And we had met him at that first conference that we volunteered at. We actually bought our trailer from him too. So yeah, Tiny House Design and Construction Guide was really helpful to us.

36:07 - 36:10

Ethan Waldman: Well Jody Brady, it's been so wonderful talking with you.

36:10 - 36:15

Jody Brady: It was always great to talk to you, Ethan. So I hope to catch up with you again soon.

36:20 - 36:55

Ethan Waldman: Thank you so much to Jody Brady for your time today. You can find the show notes for this episode, including links to Jody's recommended resources at . And I need your help. If you're enjoying the show, please take a moment to rate and review the Tiny House Lifestyle podcast in Apple Podcasts or Stitcher. Your honest reviews help others find the show. And if you haven't yet subscribed, please do subscribe in whatever app you prefer for listening to podcasts. It's free and ensures that you'll never miss an episode of the Tiny House Lifestyle Podcast. And

36:55 - 37:35

Ethan Waldman: finally, if you're looking for the ultimate guide to planning your tiny house, check out my comprehensive resource, Tiny House Decisions. Tiny House Decisions is the guide I wish I had when I built my tiny house and comes in 3 different packages to help you get a jumpstart on your tiny house planning process. Save hundreds of hours of research and thousands of dollars with tiny house decisions. You can learn more at . And for podcast listeners, we're offering a special discount. Use the coupon code tiny to take 20% off any package. Again, that's

37:35 - 37:46

Ethan Waldman: coupon code tiny for 20% off. That's all and I'll be back next week with another episode of the Tiny House Lifestyle Podcast.

powered by

Subscribe to the Tiny House Lifestyle Podcast: