OUR STORY 

Digital Marketing

Sharla May is the founder of the Tiny House Expo and the Tiny House Hub, as well as the owner of Landshare. She is also a founding member of the NZ Tiny House Association, a long-time tiny house dweller and is currently building her third tiny house. 

Sharla built her first tiny house in 2017. Deciding to sell her traditional home in Whanganui she still wanted to own her own home, but without the burden of paying a large mortgage on a single income, a tiny house was the perfect solution. After living in her tiny home for just over a year, Sharla realised she enjoys building tinys as much as living in them. So she sold the first tiny and built another one – this time in the form of a bus so she could also follow another passion of hers: travel and exploring New Zealand. 

The bus was completed at the end of 2018, and Sharla has been living in it ever since. She is now in the process of building her third tiny, choosing to build this time on the back of a flatbed truck this time to get the best of both worlds: a fully custom-built modern tiny that she can easily travel with.

For Sharla, the biggest advantage of living in a tiny house is financial freedom. It has given her the chance to spend time growing her businesses instead of being focused on making ends meet and paying the bills. 

Her own love of tiny houses and tiny living inspired Sharla to run the first Tiny House Expo in 2017 (then known as the Tiny House & Alternative Living Conference), with the goal of introducing more people to the lifestyle and its benefits. The Expo was a huge success and has grown significantly since, now attracting thousands visitors each year. 

Through the Expo, Sharla connected with many tiny house enthusiasts across New Zealand. She quickly realised three core challenges: The lack of reliable information around tiny house building and living, ways to find land to live on in tinys, and the confusing and inconsistent legal situation. 

Sharla set out to address all three. As a founding member and key initiator of the New Zealand Tiny House Association, she brought together a group of like-minded people to address these challenges, particularly those relating to the lack of clear legislation and regulations across the country. In 2019/20 Sharla lead a working group through the New Zealand Tiny House Association developing a draft bill for the long-term dwelling in tiny houses on wheels and developing a building standard for tiny homes on wheels. 

In 2021 Sharla participated in a working group run by MBIE to develop a guidance document for tiny homes. This document will be released publicly in July/August 2021. 

 

Sharla also took over Landshare from it’s founder Nathan Orr to help connect tiny house dwellers with landowners, and she founded the Tiny House Hub to provide easy access to reliable, non-biased information for those interested in the lifestyle. 

When she is not working on growing her tiny businesses, Sharla loves to travel, spend time with her two dogs, Ava and Ollie, going for walks and exploring New Zealand and its history. 

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