There are a lot of reasons people are attracted to the idea of downsizing to a tiny living space. In many cases, the residents are young singles. They have either adapted a small apartment in an expensive city, or they are homesteaders trying to reduce their individual footprint on the world. U.S. News lists a diverse population that is attracted to the financial freedom and forced decluttering of tiny living: "young people who want to get out from under student loan debt, people who want to have less impact on the environment, people who can't afford more and older people who seek to downsize in retirement."

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Still, how does one begin their new tiny lifestyle?

For one ambitious husband and father in upstate New York, the answer is to just jump in head first. The father who posts on YouTube under the name marrieddragoon, and his wife decided it was time to make their dream a reality. "We dreamed for a long time about having a tiny house, and in 2012, in August, we bought this camper, and decided we were going to turn this into our tiny house," he explains in a video he uploaded documenting the building process.  

This video stands out among other stories, because these tiny-home dwellers are parents to two young boys and had another on the way. But with determination, less than $5,000, and a lot of hard work, they made their dream of a tiny home a reality. 

How were they able to make their new home at such a low cost? The $200 1960s camper was torn down, and the scrap metal returned for approximately $200, making the trailer bed essentially free. Craigslist was scoured for free giveaways of cabinets and discounted lumber was purchased from Lowe's. Although warped and slightly damaged lumber is harder to work with, marrieddragoon was able to get discounts as steep as 90 percent off. 

Even more startling, the father who designed and built the house himself has no formal training in architecture or design. A lot of research and careful planning went into this dream home. Working in his spare time, the house was completed in a year at no great financial burden. 

In November 2013, marrieddragoon uploaded an update to his family's tiny home project. The finished house, which has a high-definition TV, Internet access, hunting equipment, musical instruments hanging on the walls, and even a tea rack, speaks to the rich lifestyle that is possible in a tiny home. When speaking of their life in the home, he says, "You get rid of the things in life that clutter your life, and you keep the things that you want the most. And what you find ... is that you get to enjoy the things that you like more than you did previously." 

After living happily in their self-built home and learning a variety of survivalist and self-sufficiency skills, they decided to hit the road. They gave away their home to a minister in New York, and purchased a fifth-wheel camper for greater mobility. Marrieddragoon's wife works as a traveling nurse, and he home-schools the children, giving them as much outdoors and hands-on learning experience as he can, all while continuing to chronicle their experience on their new YouTube channel, Roadstead to Homestead

In an update uploaded on Oct. 4, he and his wife explain their long-term goal is to pay off all debts, and to "buy a homestead and settle down ... This is just the beginning of the new journey, the new phase of our lives," the adventurers add.