How to build a tiny house in the Philippines


What’s the huge buzz about tiny houses?

Tiny homes are taking the world by storm, and why not? They’re cute, comfortable, wallet-friendly, and pleasantly compact.

They can house your things (and you) in a span of 6 sqm to 37 sqm at most.

What’s more, no idea is too small.

You can build a villa or an A-house.

Your only big problem would be where to stash (or donate) your giant fridge and closets of clothing.

Benefits of a living in a tiny house

Check out some of the benefits that a tiny house packs:

Enjoy savings

The obvious remains that the smaller the house, the fewer materials needed to build, the less floor area to manage, and the smaller the loan.

It is an affordable home for those who are just starting out or those with a minimal budget.

Saves time

Given the smaller size (actually smaller everything), it’s much faster to build a tiny house.

Easy maintenance

A tiny house will be easier to clean.

You should be able to maintain its sparkle and shine at all times.

Just remember to keep the dog out or you’ll need to clean the ENTIRE house all over again.

Modern and minimalist look

If you’re planning a minimalist lifestyle, the tiny house is a perfect place for zen and keeping only the important and value-adding things.

You can also get creative with modular shelves or a foldable bed to achieve a minimalist masterpiece.

Who can say no to a contemporary style?

Trending now

Some may consider building a tiny house a part of the trend or fashion—with aesthetic choices ranging from a cabin, beach house, bahay kubo, or even industrial!

Despite its size, it’s flexible and trendy but still comfortable and homey.

Difference between a tiny house and a regular house


You’ll have to plan for a tighter and more compact space.

Bare walls and windows can become functional or storage areas—remember this for the design phase.


There may be downsizing of materials, kitchen, lights, or plumbing fixtures that may be too long or large for a tiny home set-up.

Let’s just say an ultra-long fluorescent light will not be the ideal choice, not unless you’re a dentist or scientist.


Ingress of larger items such as mattresses or a fridge should be part of the plan especially if they are larger than the front door.

Otherwise, you might be content with a mini-fridge, if you’re building a tiny stayca-home.


Last but not the least, you’ll need to cut down on what you currently have or own.

If you are a natural hoarder or a shopaholic, keep in mind that you wouldn’t be able to stuff all your current (and future) belongings in your tiny house.

You’ll have to downsize your things too.

How to get started

Ready, get set, build!

La La-Land (and Lot)

The logistics are quite important because you’ll need to determine the lot size and location.

Since we’re talking about a tiny house, the foundation should be sturdier and in a flood-free zone.

Most importantly, to move on to the next step, you’ll need to identify the area of your future home.

Start measuring! Will you have a 2-story villa with a 20 sqm area or a compact nook within 10sqm? Let the lot decide!

Brainstorm and get the ideas flowing.

Now that you have space and area to work with, it’s time to start planning for the design.


It helps to visualize your tiny home by first checking out amazing inspirations online.

There are so many tiny house groups and websites that showcase their wonderful creations.

You’ll be astounded by the choices!

Theme and look

Zero in on your preferred theme or architectural look: A-house, villa, simple square, rustic, beach-inspired, minimalist black and white, modern kubo, industrial cave, or a tiny house on wheels.

number of floors

You’ll also need to decide the number of stories or if you plan to build a deck since either will take up extra space (and cost).

Traditional or Modern built

Another consideration for the tiny house is whether to build the traditional way or to use pre-fabricated or modular homes for a quicker finish.

There is still some degree of construction and finishing work for both, not to mention the plumbing and lighting installation.


A traditional construction will accommodate more customization to achieve your desired look, while a modular type has various boxed options that may or may not hit the look you’re going for.

Today’s prefab technology can fashion time-old favorites like the bahay kubo or rustic abode into modern masterpieces.

Essential factors

While both methods can result in comfortable and weather-proof homes, the decision still rests on your budget, timeline, and overall assessment.

Best to get insights or reviews from other tiny house dwellers to give you a realistic idea of what to expect.

Start drawing and designing. Get your pencils (or mouse) out!

Just to be clear: you don’t need to produce a da Vinci level of art.

Pen or photoshop

You just need to roughly sketch, draw, or doodle what’s in your head.

If you’ve got Photoshop skills, that would help make editing and refining easier.

Compile photos

If your right brain is clearly refusing to cooperate, you can just compile the photos and color palettes that inspired you and put together a house plan.

List ideas

List everything in your head and how you want them to be.

Vision board

No one expects you to be perfect, and you can draw, write, or even rap your vision board if that makes it easier for you.

Online blueprint and rendering services

There are many online blueprints and 3D rendering samples that you can download.

contact an architect

You can also contact your old architect buddy if he’s up for a consult (and free coffee).

Make a checklist for the tiny house.

Money matters.

All these plans, but do you have the funding already?


If you have stashed savings, then that’s a good start.

However, for a lot of folks, money will be the number one issue.

Bank and lending firm

It’s time to find financial assistance or a loan from a bank or lending firm.

Since the tiny house is a smaller-than-usual investment, the chances of getting approved should be higher. High five!

Find a contractor who make the tiny dream home a reality.

Planning for a tiny house is just one thing, but you’ll need all the help you can get from the professionals.

What to look for

Start looking for an experienced, dependable, and affordable contractor who can manage the operations, purchase of the supplies, and overall construction.

A contractor has the necessary expertise, contacts (including the architect, engineers, and the plumber), and know-how to help you build a stable, functional, comfortable, and beautiful tiny house.


Since he is also under a contractual obligation, he will ensure that your specifications and timeline are met.

While a DIY tiny house may sound like such an irresistible idea, you may risk certain foundation or roofing errors or overlook some details that may be detrimental to your family’s safety in the long run.

Shake on it.

It’s okay to talk to many contractors if you couldn’t decide easily.

Get quotations

Sometimes, having more discussions and quotations will help you find the right one for the job.

(You’ll also have many quotations that you can use as a cheat sheet.)

Once you’ve settled with your contractor, it’s time to concretize your plans.

Get recommendations and an initial plan

One good thing about hiring a professional is that his team will be able to give their excellent and appealing recommendations to your initial plans.

If you thought stacking wall shelves was cool, wait until they tell you about rolling pantries or modular drawers.

How about a floor-to-ceiling window to bring positive vibes on the shady side of the house?

And better yet, a splash of pastel and patterns instead of the ho-hum gray you opted for. Now it gets more exciting.

They’re also much better in the actual drawing and modeling, so wait for that!

Get the hard hats out! It’s time to build.

Once everything is signed and cleared, the next part goes to the actual construction.

Visit the site

While the contractor manages the building and daily decisions, it helps to visit the site once in a while, to see the work in progress.

Regular progress report

Some contractors send their clients videos or photos of the site so that even if you aren’t there in person, there’s a regular report of the progress. #Day1of50updates

Average time

Since we’re dealing with a tiny house, the estimated time of completion may take 1 to 3 months depending on the complexity of the design and requirements.

Checklist of furniture and fixtures

During this time, you can do your part by making a checklist of the furniture and fixtures that you will be bringing in that will fit.

Plan and pack the things you’ll bring to your tiny house.

Moving to a tiny house reinforces a minimalist lifestyle, whether you’re a neat freak or not.

With limited space and capacity, you’ll eventually learn and practice to keep things that you need, are practical, and bring you joy.

If it doesn’t fall under that category, toss them out (or give them away).

What to do with your “extra” things?

Clean up and divide the things you won’t be bringing to your tiny house:


Throw away the trash and garbage, things that have no value, are broken, or just junk in general.


Recycle the bottles, biodegradable materials, and paper. Send these to the respective recycling centers, bins, or your local buyers.


Sell things that are slightly new, unused, or even vintage. They can be duplicates of what you own and may be someone else’s treasure.

Consider old collectible toys, an old signature gown, a duplicate coffee machine, a set of glassware, or vintage sneakers.

Donate old clothes, bags, shoes, toys, and other useful things to a worthy cause—an orphanage or a foundation.

Clear mind and happy mindset

A PLUS side to this is that you can move into your new house with a clearer mind and a happier mindset, leaving the sad or disappointing memories behind.

Move in!

Finally, the tiny house awaits!


You’ve inspected every nook and cranny and jumped on the second floor to check if anything falls off or creaks.

Everything is a clean pass.

It’s a bright and shiny moment for you (and your family), or it could also be the large window bringing in the light (good thing the architect suggested that).

Trying things out

Now it’s time to move in your belongings, and try out the new house for a few days to check if there are leaks or crickets getting inside the windows.

Once you’ve gone through a week without problems, flickers, ants, or even ghosts, then this time, you can really say, it’s a home tiny sweet home!

Tiny House Contractors in the Philippines

Get the specialists so that you won’t find big mistakes in your tiny house construction.

They’ll be able to complete your customizations and other cute asks at a faster rate (even before you learn how to use a Dremel tool).

G Cube Design + Build Inc.

Based in Lipa, they’re a full-service family firm that offers build and design services.

While the team has ample experience building homes and hospitals, they have the same expertise for tiny homes.

What’s G-reat is that they offer designs and floor plans for tiny homes that come with bells and whistles.  

D HAUS Architectural and Engineering Services

D Haus is made up of a power team of professionals headed by an architect with a background in Japanese architecture.

We can expect function and fashion—inspired by minimalism. Their creations are far from ordinary and make living in a tiny house seem like D best thing ever.

Tokyo Grand Renovation Inc. (TGR)

TGR specializes in designing beautiful homes, townhouses, and restaurants, but also harps on their Japanese craftsmanship and aesthetics to achieve a clean and minimalist output.

They’ve worked with condo units and compact homes and made modifications to make them modern, functional, and elegant. The team is worth a try since they’ve got an interesting catalog that would look perfect for a tiny house.

Top-Notch Construction

Top-Notch aims to be the leading and preferred contractor in the country, so it’s safe to say that these guys have done it all.

They’ve built big and small homes and also offer prefabricated structures!

Why DIY when Top-Notch Construction has partnered with Prefab Homes to install tough but beautiful tiny homes?

CO Construction

CO Construction makes COntemporary their signature look.

From a range of house sizes, they’ve also created a tiny shipping container house and managed to make it look fab!

They may have a niche for transforming any idea to reality, which is really COol.

Tiny House Builder – Davao

A name that’s as straightforward as its services.

This Davao-based construction company can transform a shipping container into your dream home.

That’s not all, they can make other tiny homes based on your choice of local materials like bamboo or wood.

Island living, here we come!

HDCON Builders Corp.

HDCON offers the usual design, build, and construction services—the given.

A quick glimpse of their Facebook page shows several posts of tiny house inspirations.

If they can post it, then they surely can build it!

Nest Box Philippines

If you’re feeling the container life, then Nest Box Philippines might be able to help. Their pre-fabricated homes boast a modern, sturdy, and cozy design. Make it rustic or industrial—and they will build it based on your specifications.

Tiny House Philippines

Their Facebook page tells us everything we need to get started: design and build with a specialization in tiny or pre-fabricated housing.

It’s encouraging to see all the tiny homes that are their inspiration. Maybe one of their posts could be your mini dream home.

Tiny Homes Co.

Tiny Homes is a construction company based in Angeles City (that’s the North of Luzon, not California).

The team promises “big solutions for small spaces.”

There isn’t much on their social media, but we feel that they’re ready to spread the love on your future tiny home.

921 Design and Build

Construction and architecture are part of their usual roster.

Interestingly they posted their “small house” project in Tiny House Philippines and thus became part of this list.

They’re worth a shot if the tiny house you’re planning borders on the small side already.

Finding the contractor for your tiny house

You’ve already decided that a tiny house is your next dream project, and the next thing you need is to find a contractor. There are so many to choose from, but how to choose the one:

Look for experience.

Building a tiny house in the Philippines isn’t that common yet, so best to look for a contractor who has at least the experience or know-how to build what you want.

You have the option to look for a specialized contractor for tiny houses or one with super contractor skills, he can build one for you.

Of course, it helps if you could see his past projects as proof of his brag sheet.

With Google and social media as your friends, you should be able to inspect even more.

 Seeing stars?

Since we’re operating mainly in a digital world, make use of Google and online communities to do an Internet search.

See if bad reviews, forum complaints, blacklisted names, or even news articles come up.

On the flip side, 5 stars, lots of hearts, and glowing testimonials should be good news for any contractor.

Not only was he able to deliver the desired house, for clients to even give a review, the construction and output must have also been awesome!

Check the credibility.

If you’re getting referrals from family and friends, then this should be a giant check.

Otherwise, make sure that his title and awards are real and not fake and Photoshopped.

Set a meeting or video call to see him do his tiny house pitch.

Top tip:

Join online or social media communities of tiny house owners and supporters (could be a thing since it is a movement).

This way, you can ask them about solid and reliable contractors, if they haven’t credited or thanked their builder yet on their posts.

All-in-one and gets it done.

A design and build team will be greatly helpful if it’s already a one-stop shop for the architect, contractor, engineer, builders, plumber, carpenter—well you get it, right?

Rather than talking to different guys, it’ll be easier if you get a single contractor to manage them all.

That way, you’ll have enough peace of mind and time for your other tasks.

No, we didn’t mean shopping!

You still have some decluttering and packing chores to do!

The price is right.

While you can never sacrifice quality over the cost, collecting (not hoarding) quotations will give you an idea of the market value of what you are building.

You can already weed out the potentially overpriced contractors—the ones who thought they’ll be building a house of gold (unless you did ask for that).

Don’t fall for the lowest quotation too! Inspect the quotations closely in case they might result in half a door or a missing tile.

Remember in a tiny house, every tile, wood parquet, or brick matters!

There’s a meeting of minds, not a clash of colors.

The ideal scenario: you describe your vision and dream house and show your pegs (the sketch, the digital drawing, or even just that image from Google).

From there, you’re not supposed to get his approval.

Your “the one” contractor should support your ideas (no matter how ridiculous or color blind they look on paper) and build on them.

As a professional, he’s got an even larger team of professionals to translate your beautiful idea into an aesthetic masterpiece that is doable within your specified time frame and budget.

That sentence pretty much captures what you’re looking for.

Don’t let go of the one! Shake on it, and get started on your tiny house!

Tiny House Frequently Asked Questions

What is the cost of building a tiny house?

You can build a tiny house from PHP89K to PHP400K.

The range is great because of the possibilities and add-on services that can drive up the cost.

Examples are plumbing, electrical supplies, finishing works, and other fixtures that usually don’t come with a bare unit.

Adding another story, a loft, windows, rooms, or partitions will cost you more and so will high-quality materials and customized specifications.

A basic finish is around PHP15K per sqm, while an elegant or trendy design may reach PHP 25K-30K per sqm.

How many can fit or live here?

If we’re talking about dwelling (and not staycationing), the minimum size can comfortably fit up to 2 people.

15-20 sqm can house 3 family members.

A family of 5 may still fit within the 35 sqm space. Improve the comfort level by adding walls, rooms, or a loft.

Once the kids start growing up, it might be time to consider an expansion project.

What are the top 3 pros and cons of a tiny house?
  • Living in a tight space may be mentally draining or suffocating and a challenge in case of a child crying or a couple squabbling.
  • The guest count may be limited too, and you’ll have to take your gatherings elsewhere.
  • While easy to clean, it is also quickly prone to disorder. Knocking down a pitcher of water will create a big mess on the floor + walls + furniture (+ you).
  • Nothing beats a budget-friendly house—in terms of construction, water, and electricity costs.
  • Maintenance and repairs are also easier with a smaller area (and fewer appliances) to worry about.
  • A tiny house will inspire you to have an energy-efficient, sustainable, and minimalist lifestyle. It’s all good vibes when you live in a clean and clutter-free environment.
Less is more

Have you decided if the tiny house is for you?

It’s an affordable way to start your own home with countless design possibilities!

Make it your solo (wo)man cave or house your entire family—created with your specifications, preferences, and personality.

Make it the best investment ever that’s IG-worthy too!



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