Man Turns Craigslist Shed Into Tiny Home He’s Renting Out For $74 A Night

In just 245 square feet, a man has created his dream home in his own backyard in San Antonio, Texas, which now attracts visitors looking for a unique vacation experience.

Inspired by travels with his wife, Daniel Salas built the house from a storage shed he found on Craigslist. In just five months, he transformed it into a livable space that is now available for vacation rentals starting at $74 a night.

“My wife and I love to travel,” Salas said. Newsweek. “We started visiting more Airbnbs in Texas and further afield and were blown away by this house we stayed in about an hour north of here.”

Daniel and Jillian Salas (inset top left) and a photo of their custom-built tiny home in their backyard in San Antonio, Texas. They now rent it from $74 a night.
Daniel Salas

Their unusual vacation property was built from an old barn that had been cleverly converted into a small, self-contained home. “We liked the intimacy,” Daniel explained. “With a smaller space, we spent more time together. We then thought that one day we would like to have something like this in our garden.”

Tiny homes have seen a big boom in recent years as people seek out more affordable housing options and ditch apartment rentals in favor of their own custom-built miniature homes.

In 2020, like many of us, Salas found himself with time off as the COVID-19 pandemic brought the world to a standstill.

“I started doing a lot of research and preparing my garden because I knew I wanted to create a small house. I did a lot of planning and rearranged my garden into the space I wanted to use,” said Salas said. But it wasn’t until the spring of 2021 that a Craigslist listing caught his eye.

A man nearby was selling a shed and Salas asked for more information. “He was asking a very reasonable price for it, but no one bought it,” he explained. Salas then held out his hand and asked if he could come and see the building.

“He had a nice setup, and I went to look at the shed and he was pretty new – only about five years old,” Salas said.

When inquiring about the building and why it was listed at such a reasonable price of $2,500, the owner explained that he had one condition: the shed cannot be taken apart. If he agreed to this, the seller said he would give the unit to Salas that day for $1,200.

small house construction
Photos of the shed being delivered to its new home, left, and some of the work going on inside. In just five months, he transformed it into a livable space that is now available for vacation rentals starting at $74 a night.
Daniel Salas

After looking around a bit more, Salas made the decision to take unity with him. The next step was to get him home about 45 minutes down the road. Making lots of phone calls and arranging things, he finally found someone to transport the shed for $500. Now the problem was getting him into his garden.

“I came home and started looking at the garden and thought, ‘Oh my God, I made a huge mistake,'” Salas said. “It wasn’t going to fit between my neighbor’s house and my house with the fence.”

Salas had decided to surprise his wife with the purchase, and she was understandably confused when he started tearing down their garden fence.

“I told him I was going to work on the fence this weekend,” he laughed. “Then came on Monday and she came up to me and said, ‘There’s a storage shed in front of our house,’ and that’s how she found out I bought it.”

small house interior
Photos from inside the tiny house, which is now available for vacation rentals in Texas. The structure has a full range of amenities, including air conditioning, a functional bathroom and kitchenette.
Daniel Salas

With the movement of the fence and a little work, they managed to get the storage shed into the back yard. Salas’ next step was to make it the living space they dreamed of.

During the first summer it was only used as a shed, but by 2022 the couple had saved enough money to start their tiny house project.

“I’ve set aside about $25,000,” Salas said. “I had to run the plumbing, get the permits, the electrical, everything. I hired the contractor who had renovated my kitchen the year before.”

By mid-October the house was complete, but the couple decided they needed more space. “I just wanted it a little bigger,” added Salas. “So we had to blow up a wall in the back and extend it eight by 12 feet to make a bedroom.”

It took another six weeks to add more space to the tiny house, and by Christmas the house was finally complete.

small house interior
An overview of building a $45,000 tiny house. The budget exploded when the Salas expanded the shed.
Daniel Salas

The plan was simply to have the tiny house as a space the family could use when visiting. However, by the end of the renovation, the budget had been stretched. “With all the add-ons and everything, overall it was about $40,000,” Salas said. “So at that point I said, ‘You know what? Let’s see if we can rent that. “”

Once the construction work was completed, Salas set to work to complete the property with all the necessary amenities. In addition to a fully functional bathroom and kitchen, the house has its own electricity, air conditioning and TV.

It didn’t take long for them to arouse interest and the first guests of the little house stayed on New Year’s Eve 2022.

Today, the family welcomes visitors from all over who come to stay in their unusual little house. “I joined a few Facebook groups and started getting people from all over to ask me questions and want to come and stay,” Salas said.

“Friends and family come from out of town and want to stay at our house. It’s quite popular – from a small idea, it grew to be really big.”


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