This Man Lives In a $5,000 Dumpster Tiny House — And It Looks Surprisingly Cozy

published Mar 17, 2023
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I guess you could say the place is a dump.

Harrison Marshall, a London-based architect and artist, has gone viral recently after a TikTok video featured his tiny house, which is made from a dumpster. You read that right. His very humble abode is called the Skip House, and it features a dumpster as its foundation and only cost him £4,000 (about $4,871) to build.

It’s not as trashy as you might think. To make the container more habitable, Marshall added an insulated timber frame and cedar shingles for walls, a roof, and three windows that provide natural light and ventilation. There’s no door, but there is a ladder that leads up to one of the windows to crawl through.

Inside, the place looks surprisingly cozy. It features 25 square feet of living space, complete with a mini kitchen and the tiniest fridge, a heater, a lofted bed, shelves on the walls, and lots of houseplants and art. For the toilet, Marshall rents a port-a-potty. For the shower, he bathes at the gym or at work.

As for utilities, he gathers water from a neighboring property, and had to endure the first six weeks without electricity, relying on blankets and heated water bottles until the dumpster could connect to the electrical grid.

Obviously, it’s not ideal to reside in such a setting, but there are some upsides. For one, the location is great, with the property situated in central London. Others who live in the neighborhood pay thousands in rent, while Marshall lives on the lot for free, thanks to a non-profit organization. He only spends about £50 ($61a month for his electric bill. Oh, and no landlord!

According to Marshall, he moved into the dumpster after becoming frustrated with the ever-increasing cost of living in London, where the average rent for a single room in a shared house costs about £933 ($1,109). The tiny house serves as a message to landlords and policy makers that no one should ever be forced to live in such an accommodation.

He explained to Hyper Allergic: “I wanted to hammer home the realities of the rental situation in London by creating something that could be considered better than many of the rooms on offer around London, even though it was in a dumpster.” So relatable.

Marshall plans to live in the Skip House for an entire year. You can see more updates from him by following his TikTok account.