It might be turned into a mobile home for camping or summer road trips. Or, it could become a hot dog stand.
The 144-square-foot home on wheels built by students at the Chicago High School for Agricultural Sciences (CHSAS) two years ago has been used for several school projects, but now the school is selling its “tiny house.”
The asking price is $11,000, school officials said, but they’re willing to negotiate.
The house was built for the school’s 2015 flower and garden show, officials said, but plans to continue using it for other purposes haven’t worked out.
“There was talk of keeping it and using it for out-of-town guests—sometimes we have exchange students,” said Jim Slee, CHSAS agricultural mechanics teacher. “But, it wasn’t feasible, so they decided somebody could make better use of it.”
The house’s interior includes a kitchen sink, a kitchen table and a bathroom, although the school said the toilet currently isn’t operable; for an additional $1,000, they will work with the buyer to install a working toilet.
A loft with a bed is above the kitchen table.
According to the school, the house can sleep four or five people and has a porch with stairs.
The trailer is included, officials said, and the structure could be pulled at a maximum speed of 45 miles per hour.
“They really tried to follow the whole outdoor living ideals when they built it,” Agricultural Finance Teacher Noelle Coronado said. “The goal was to recommend that a barbecue or grill ... be hooked up. You can hook up a cooktop here and other types of appliances, but that was sort of the idea behind it.”
Besides the garden show, the school also used the house for a recent project in which students helped build a garden this past spring at Metcalfe Academy, an elementary school at 12339 S. Normal Ave. They brought the house to the school to share zucchini bread with students.
“It’s been kind of like a roaming headquarters for different projects we’ve had,” Slee said. “I know they’ve used it out here for ticket sales. … It’s kind of like a multi-purpose use.”
Selling the house has given students another project to work on. Seniors Amir Lake, Joel Arizaga, Arron Porus, Nicholas Brown and Emily Neeson, all part of the agricultural finance pathway at the school, are promoting the sale, while senior Nick Doran, of the agricultural mechanics and technology pathway, is also helping.
They want to generate more publicity for the house.
“Basically the only people who knew about it were the people at this school—Mr. Slee and the students and the staff. We’re the only people who knew we were trying to sell it,” Brown said. “So, we have to get the word out to everyone in this neighborhood, even outside the neighborhood.”
Their outreach also extended to the Internet, and they said the received two emails expressing interest in buying.
“We did put it on a couple Web sites,” Arizaga said. “We put the dimensions, a few descriptions on them, prices.”
According to Slee, the school determined the price based on costs for construction supplies and the labor that students put into building it.
Lake’s brother, Allan, a 2015 CHSAS graduate, played an integral role in the construction.
“He and his team were kind of responsible for building the house,” Lake said. “It was a lot of late nights where he stayed at CHSAS and came home with homework that included the schematics and blueprints of the tiny house and dimensions and stuff like that.”
The school hosted tours of the house on Oct. 22, and officials want to sell it as soon as possible.
With fall in full swing, the timing might make it difficult to find a buyer looking to take a summer road trip or open a food truck.
“This is kind of a hard time of season—[the house] is more for outdoor living stuff,” Slee said. “This is probably the most inopportune time to be selling it.
However, Slee remains confident in the students leading the efforts.
“The team that’s on it is the right team—they can do it.”
For more information on the house, call the school at (773) 535-2500.