In today’s world of overpriced rent and extortionate mortgages, building a tiny home cheaply can be an act of great independence and rebellion. This tiny-home dream came true for Michael Talley, a graphic designer from Austin, Texas. Talley was getting sick of paying $1200 a month for a tiny apartment, so he decided to take his accommodation problem into his own hands and create a tiny home for himself. After researching for months about how to create a small home space, Talley’s plans changed dramatically when he saw an old school bus online and decided to create a living space with wheels instead.
Now living happily in his home-come-school bus, you won’t believe your eyes when you see the amazing refurbishments that Michael has created inside the bus. Read on to find out more.
Who Is Michael Talley?
Michael Talley is a graphic designer and illustrator living in Austin, Texas. Similar to many others like him, Michael spent his time living in the city and commuting to work. Because Austin is a huge and popular location to live, Talley was spending over $1200 a month on rent every month for a small apartment that he didn’t particularly enjoy living in. As his rent was getting increasingly difficult to pay, Talley decided that he needed a change.
Finding a Solution to The Problem
As it stood, Michael saw his apartment as nothing but a money drain and a heartache. The designer’s wages were being paid straight to his renting agent, and it was all for a small and dreary apartment outside the city. Eager to get out of this rut, Talley started researching alternative forms of living and found tiny-home living.
Buying the Bus
After searching online for weeks, Talley eventually found an auction that was selling old school buses. After seeing the buses, Michael got an idea to buy one, take its wheels off and convert it into a living space. Within a few days, Talley had bought the bus for a mere $2200 and had it parked at his friend’s farm. You won’t believe what he did next!
Converting the Bus
After seeing the bus in person, Michael had a better idea than making a tiny home for himself. Instead of taking the wheels off the bus, Michael decided that he would keep the bus mobile, and just convert the back of the bus into a living space. This way he could travel and see the world, all from the comfort of his own home! Within days, the grueling renovation work had begun…
Living Frugally While Working
In order to save money for the bus project, Talley moved out of his Austin apartment and began living in a tent on his friend’s farm beside his bus. The designer began the bus renovation by taking out all of the seats, which was a difficult and grueling project for someone who hadn’t any previous manual labour experience. It was then that Talley ran into a significant problem…
Finding Solutions To Problems
After taking out the seats, Talley realised that there was a major problem with the bus- it was too small! Talley was 6”6, while the ceiling was only 6”1 in height. In an attempt to rectify this, Talley began the terrifying task of cutting the roof off of the bus in order to make it higher and easier to stand up in. The bus was being modified in more ways than Talley had ever imagined and he had no idea of the workload he had gotten himself into…
Changing the Engine
Another major problem that Talley ran into was that the engine of the bus would not be powerful enough to drive him and his home around. In a bid to rectify this, Talley went inside the engine to rewire it and make the bus viable to drive once more. After a few weeks, all of the horrible groundwork was completed, and the interior design could begin. You won’t believe how Michael converted the inside of the bus!
Transforming the Interior
Michael had a dream that the interior of the bus would be cosy, modern and functional, and boy did he achieve that dream! The designer used repurposed wood to line the walls of the bus, giving it a cosy and homely feel. Using old soft furnishings and wood, he created a kitchen and living space that had a rustic, yet modern and warm feel. The bus was starting to feel like home!
Making a Workspace
One of Michael’s main annoyances with his former apartment was that it was too small for him to have a proper desk and large workspace in. Amazingly, Talley managed to create a beautiful workspace for himself within his bus, building in a huge desk which would be any graphic designer’s dream. Within a few months, the bus renovation was complete, and the final project was jaw-dropping…
Finishing off The Project
After a few months of hard work, about $15,000 in savings, and a lot of difficult living situations, Michael’s bus was finally complete, and he was able to move in. Talley finished his project off by painting his bus white and decorating the interior with cosy new furnishings and trinkets. Now, instead of paying $1200 to simply have a place to sleep, Talley’s living expenses are practically $0, and he has created a haven where he can now work, play, sleep, live and travel all at once. Inspired? Us too. Would you dare to join the tiny-home revolution and live like this?