Reflections for 2016 & New Year Ahead

Happy February!

For many days, it was raining in Ojai. Beautiful and much needed rain. Nourishing the soil as it nourishes my soul. A perfect time to reflect.

While the world seems to be turned upside down, sometimes all we can do is focus on positive changes being made in the face of great adversity. Take action, do what you can, never lose hope, and remember to practice gratitude.

Looking back, I am feeling an enormous amount of gratitude for my readers, clients and fans. And especially to perfect strangers whom I never met but are somehow inspired by me and my little tiny house.

For most of my life I’ve searched for a place to call home. Always seeking the feeling of belonging. I feel very fortunate to finally find home in my little house on wheels, in a magical little town of Ojai.

Home is a core concept to our humanity, everyone understands it, everyone relates to it, everyone searches for its right expression.

To be able to do what I do – to help others find home – is truly a gift. Thank you for the honor and opportunity to serve such a meaningful purpose.

May this year bring positive change, hope and optimism for the year ahead.

With much love on this Valentine’s Day,


Sol Haus Design at Yale University



SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT: We are very honored and excited to announce that Vina Lustado (that’s me!) from Sol Haus Design has been invited to give a presentation at Yale University on social entrepreneurship, sustainability and diversity.

Bright Lights, Green Sights is a speaker series that highlights voices of underrepresented leaders in sustainable entrepreneurship. The series seeks to expand popular understandings of sustainability beyond natural resource issues, and features change makers working to simultaneously reach long-term environmental, social, and financial goals.

Please join us for this special event on Thursday April 6th at Yale University in New Haven, Connecticutt. Vina Lustado will discuss her journey from childhood in the Philippines to finding her own company, to designing and building her tiny house. The event is open to the public and a podcast interview will follow. Details to come.

NEW! Custom Tiny House Design & Build


Debbie’s current home at 1400 square feet will be traded in for a tiny home at 180 square feet!

Would you trade in this 1400sf gorgeous home for a 180sf tiny house? We’re just thrilled to have the opportunity to design a tiny home that warrants this radical downsizing – without sacrificing beauty and functionality. This is what my client, Debbie Linton, had to say:

“Honestly, I could not afford to keep my current home on my retirement income and savings, but I am so ready to get rid of everything I do not need, including 2.5 bathrooms. I want something small and simple that is easy to maintain but beautiful too.”

The new design boasts a completely new layout from previous design. The tiny house will be built on a 26′ trailer with a full size kitchen, spacious bathroom and two sleeping lofts.

After designing my own tiny house, and with over 20 years of experience in space planning and interior layout, I can provide custom tiny house designs specifically for YOU. Get custom tiny house designs on our website HERE

The arrival of the 26′ trailer by Iron Eagle Trailers for our custom tiny house build for Debbie Linton

THE TRAILER HAS ARRIVED! We’re off to the races and construction will begin soon! Construction is estimated for 3-4 months with completion targeted for July 2017. Stay tuned – We think this is one of our best designs yet!

After extensive research on trailers and after having built three custom tiny houses, we highly recommend the quality and service of Iron Eagle Trailers. Get $50 discount on Iron Eagle Trailer HERE. Watch helpful videos HERE and HERE.

Legalities of Tiny Houses


Remember the tiny house documentary “Living Tiny Legally” that featured our little town of Ojai? Did you know that Tiny House Expedition is about to premier Part 2? Details HERE. If you value this work as an educational resource, please give a donation HERE. They work tirelessly and are deeply committed to their advocacy work. Thank you!

Many of you have asked about the status of legalization of tiny homes in Ojai, CA. Last year in spring, City Council gave approval to include tiny homes under second dwelling unit ordinance. However, final implementation still remains. If you want to take action to move this forward, see action item #2 below.

Last year in November, a BIG victory for tiny houses was made on a national level! A new building code appendix under the IRC (International Residential Code) was approved for tiny houses, thanks to a great team led by Andrew Morrison from Tiny House Build. The new appendix means that any dwellings under 400sf on a foundation can be approved when built to meet the provisions of the appendix. Read more about the Appendix HERE and HERE

1. If you want to adopt the new Appendix in your jurisdiction, you will need to go to the local Building Department and ask your building official to adopt the Tiny House Building Code RB-168-16 Appendix V. DETAILS HERE
2. If you live in Ojai, call or write a letter to the City Manager/ Mayor, City Council and Planning Commission. Request to put back on the agenda “tiny house as second dwelling unit” so they can move forward with the changes to include tiny homes on wheels!

* Details on Tiny House Building Code RB-168-16 Appendix V CLICK HERE
* Watch “Living Tiny Legally Part 1” featuring Ojai. Skip to 46:55 CLICK HERE
* Article from VC Star about the workshop with local public officials in Ventura County CLICK HERE

This post was originally published in the Sol Haus Design newsletter. Read more. 

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