A Mother Of Two Was Nearly Homeless Until She Did This

By lgentile - May 21, 2019

Imagine this scenario. You are 27-year-old woman with two sons, just six and two years old. You are living in Australia, your marriage is on the fritz and you are about to be single again. You know that your current income will not support you and your kids living in a new home and your greatest fear, homelessness, can potentially become a reality. What would you do? You can live with friends and family, but with two kids, you can only do that for so long.

For super mom Charlotte Sapwell, she was determined to find a solution. She knew that she had to figure out how to get a roof over her boy’s heads and fast. With a small budget and a huge heart, she decided to something amazing. She was going to build a new home for her boys to live in from scratch and she was going to do it with her own two hands.

Facing Financial Difficulties


When faced with financial troubles, Sapwell sprung into action. “It’s not something I had ever really thought about, but then due to financial difficulties, I spoke to my grandpa and he suggested we build a tiny house,” Charlotte told Yahoo7.

She thought that if she could find a way to have a smaller and more manageable mortgage, she could support her children and they could live comfortably.

She decided that sometimes you just have to do things yourself.

Get To Work


So, she got straight to work and Charlotte built a cozy three-bedroom house for her kids.

She explained, “I was running out of options and as a mum I needed to do everything within my power to provide for my boys even if it meant some long days and hard work.”

Do you want to know the coolest thing about their new home? And he built the house in her grandfather’s backyard in Ballarat, Australia.

One Step At A Time


She built her tiny dream home with the very tight budget of on£8,000, which is about $10,000 USD.

It took her only five months to build the house until it was ready to be moved into. Although when they moved in, the place was bare and they didn’t have any functioning utilities.

“The first few weeks were hard with three people living in a box, but then when things started happening like running water, flushing toilet we all got excited,” she said.

Helping Hands


Even after a while, when they were more settled in, she went for a few months without a washing machine. While that doesn’t seem too crazy, it is with two little messboys! 

She was also able to fit all her costs into a very small budget because she had a lot of help.

“I’m lucky that together we did all the labour, and I’m talking everything so that took away a lot of the cost.”

Everything On Her Own


With the help of her grandfather, this super mom sourced all of the materials and tools that she needed from a local hardware store.

She then got to work and took on every step and built the small home herself. She did everything on her own, from laying the ground structure to building the roof, she learned how to do it all.

She built the timber wall supports, put together the plumbing, installed the electricity and painted everything.

Help From Grandpa


She knows that she could not have done any of this without the help of her grandfather.

Not only was kind enough to offer her a plot of land in his backyard to build her new home, but he also helped financially.

He gave her a loan so she could buy supplies and get started on the home. She said it wasn’t exactly a “suitcase of cash” but that she is “paying him back every cent”.

Thank You IKEA


Most of the furniture and interior finishes were sourced from that super thrifty, always nifty IKEA and Kmart.

She also depended on second hand stores, garage sales and dumpster diving.

“My main tip is Gumtree, garage sales anyone chucking stuff in dumpys, we live in an online world and it’s very easy to put a call out online and see what people are getting rid of and the same goes for selling, everyone loves a bargain.”

Making It Work


And while the house is small, they used their space wisely and made it work. Charlotte’s bedroom is also the living room and the kitchen.

The bathroom is also the laundry room and then the boys have their own room. Charlotte wanted to make sure that whatever happens, the boys had a nice room.

“For me the proudest moment was the boys room, giving them their own space filled me with an incredible sense of achievement.”

Finishing Touches


While Charlotte spearheaded the project, she also couldn’t have done it without her two amazing sons. According to mom, the two were perfect helpers.

Since completing her house a few years ago, her family’s story has gone viral. She said that this attention has encouraged her to finally finish other little jobs around the house that she hadn’t gotten to yet.

Most recently she made the boys their very own door. This super mom designed and made this door from scratch.

Doing It Yourself


She also said that building the house on her own has showed her just how much she is capable of.

She never thought that she could build a house on her own. That is, until she tried.

She wants to encourage others to learn from her journey and wants others to know that they can take matters into their own hands just like she did. Don’t think you could do that yourself? Well, neither did she.




It's Your Turn


When asked about her experience she said, “Anyone can do it, I never would of thought I’d ever achieve building my own home let alone love what I’m doing.”

Before you dive in, she a few tips for you for you. “My advice is don’t be afraid to start small, really we don’t need a lot of things,” she said.

So, ifyou don’t need much and think you can live minimally, what are you waiting for?

One Good Momma!


And while there is not much space for a housewarming party, their house has everything that their family needs.

They have a roof over their head, they are happy and healthy and their story is truly inspiring. This woman is clearly one good momma.

Does this story make you want to downsize? Does it make you want to throw away your clutter and simplify your life? Well, we’ve got some good news for you. Tiny houses are all the rage these days, so maybe you can have one of your own!

A Tiny House For You!


After hearing their story are you inspired to get a tiny house of your own? Well now you can without doing all the work. Check out Tumbleweed Tiny House Company.

They have many different kinds of houses to choose from and you can park them anywhere.

They provide special prices for teachers, military and first responders and they even have payment plans. They start as low as $54,000 and you can even design yours to fit your neee!

Renu Foundation


Or if you are feeling down on your luck, you can always look for help at Renu Foundation.

Their mission is to help those who are struggling regain their footing in society. They offer job opportunities, affordable places to live and so much more.

As part of their program they offer CUBITS, which are affordable, transportable and even expandable building units that participants can help build and then live in! For more information, check them out at

Tiny Homes For Everyone


New Frontier Tiny Homes sets out to design and build a tiny home that supports the life of your dream.

Their houses may be tiny, but they are full of detail. According to their website, their goal is to improve  lives by supporting economic freedom, intentional living, and sustainability.

They believe that great design and quality housing should be affordable and attainable. So to all you future home owners out there, let this be a lesson to you. You don’t need a lot of space or money to own your own home. All you need is a dream, a  and a tiny place to put it!