Two Australian teenagers concerned about the rising cost of property are attempting to build an ‘off grid’ house for $0.
Rachel Ware and Jarryd Sime from Melbourne, both 19, started the project in April and went viral on TikTok after sharing their ambitious plan.
‘As house prices keep drastically increasing we know that we may not be able to afford to buy in the future, but by having this property we will always have a backup and something that belongs to us,’ Jarryd, an apprentice carpenter, told Daily Mail Australia.
Rachel purchased the 604sqm piece of land in Gippsland, Victoria by working as a nanny and saving money.
While the pair have set themselves a huge challenge, they believe they can achieve the free build by using Gumtree, Facebook marketplace and local tips.
‘With all the help we are being offered, the support and the building materials we have been able to get so far, we do believe we can build this for $0,’ Jarryd said.
Rachel Ware (right) and Jarryd Sime (left) from Melbourne, both 19, are attempting to build an ‘off grid’ house themselves for $0
Rachel purchased the 604sqm piece of land in Gippsland, Victoria and works as a nanny, while Jarryd is an apprentice carpenter
‘Over time we both noticed the amount of building and house materials that end up on the side of the road or in the tip, so our idea was to recycle these items to see if it’s possible to make a house out of them,’ Jarryd said.
Rachel has taught herself how to use carpentry tools by ‘binge watching’ YouTube videos. Jarryd has received guidance from his boss about the best materials to use.
The duo plan to build a 12m by 8m house with two bedrooms, one bathroom and an open-plan kitchen, living and dining area.
‘We wanted to make the plan simple while still giving us a challenge,’ Jarryd said.
The house is going to be ‘off the grid’ – not connected to regular electricity and water systems – to reduce its impact on the environment.
The pair hope to complete the project within 12 months.
The house itself is going to be ‘off the grid’ to reduce the impact on the environment and support recycling – implying it won’t be connect to regular electricity and water systems
In mid-April Jarryd and Rachel tore down a free 4m by 3m bungalow frame in Melbourne and kept the hard wooden panels to use for the frame of their own house
The duo plan to build a 12m by 8m house with two bedrooms, one bathroom
In mid-April, Jarryd and Rachel tore down a free 4m by 3m bungalow frame in Melbourne and kept the hard wooden panels to use for their own house.
Once the panels were detached they used a grinder to remove all visible nails.
‘The most challenging aspect of this build is to get all the hard wood needed for the frame of the house, as hardwood is currently in low stock and in great demand,’ Jarryd said.
They also managed to obtain a window, door and skylight from the free bungalow frame.
The following week the pair picked up a free wooden front door and 22 bags of insulation.
In addition to gathering free materials online, they have received supplies from generous businesses that are discarding unwanted goods.
The pair haven’t started construction yet as they want to ensure they have enough materials to support the design.
The pair haven’t started construction yet as they first want to ensure they have enough materials to support the design
Since starting the project, the young DIY enthusiasts have shared their story on TikTok and gained more than 57,000 followers after their first video went viral receiving 1.5million views.
‘We have had a lot of negativity on our TikTok page but we don’t mind other opinions as we were doing this in our spare time for fun,’ Jarryd said.
The unexpected interest from others shocked both Jarryd and Rachel, who now post regular videos to keep their audience updated.
‘We have had a great amount of support in this project with so many people asking to help us, so many businesses wanting to get involved. We really feel like we are bringing a community together – we gained 50,000 followers in the first 3 days!!’ Jarryd said.
With the online following they hope to raise money to assist young adults who are on the brink of homelessness.
How are Jarryd and Rachel going to achieve the $0 house build?
The two teenagers have been collecting free materials from Gumtree, Facebook marketplace, landfill and generous businesses that are disposing of unwanted excess material
The house will be ‘off grid’ to be environmentally friendly – implying it won’t be connected to regular electricity and water systems
They hope to complete the project within 12 months
So far they have managed to obtain wooden panels, a door, window, roofing materials, a double front door and 22 bags of insulation
Jarryd is an apprentice carpenter while Rachel works as a nanny and has taught herself how to use tools by ‘binge watching’ YouTube videos
Jarryd has also received guidance from his boss about the best materials to use