David answers common questions about how to build a bunkie. How do I build a foundation? What tools do I need? Do I need a permit? With the help of friends or family you can build a bunkie from a bunkie kit in 2-3 days.
What can the bunkie be used for?
A bunkie is a small cabin people build at the cottage or on their home property for extra space. A bunkie is multi-purpose and can be used for guests, an office, an Airbnb, a kids playhouse, a studio, a private space to retreat to, or anything you need extra space for. The possibilities are endless!
If you have any specific questions - we are always happy to help answer them here.
How long does it take to build?
Our bunkie kits are known to be able to be built in a weekend! Of course, there are varying bunkie kits that range from easier to harder (non-lofted bunkies to lofted bunkies). Depending on the bunkie model and how much time you have each day, the time it takes to build can vary.
Our non-lofted models can easily be built in a weekend. Our lofted models may take a little longer, but it depends on how many people you have, their skill level, and how long of days you are putting in. We’ve seen lofted bunkies go up in a weekend too! Those clients may have put in 12-16 hour days, and had the beautiful sun shining down on them the whole time.
It’s always best to budget an extra day just in case, it never hurts to be able to sit back and look at all of the hard work you put in after it is complete.
Can I build the bunkie myself?
You bet you can! A lot of our clients opt to DIY build their bunkies. It’s a really special moment when you gather your friends and family for the build and complete it together. It’s always nice to have someone who is a bit more organized keeping track of what pieces are where and what is next in the manual. Then, there are the people who are ready to climb ladders, screw in corners and lift your roof beams - we like to call them the “muscle”. Everyone, even the smallest of crew members can have a part in getting the bunkie built!
If you’d like a little help, we have a list of installers and a few of them will even help you along in the build if you’d like to be a part of it but have someone else bring the tools!
Do I require a permit?
In Ontario municipalities allow buildings up to 10 sq meters without a permit and unorganized townships may allow larger models. Contact your building department for local regulations.
Models which exceed a 108 Square feet footprint likely will require a building permit in various organized townships however many provinces and states may differ, we recommend to always check with your local municipality for clarity on local building bylaws, maximum height requirements and property setbacks.
If you have any specific questions for us - we are always happy to help answer them here.
Do Bunkies require a foundation?
Yes, You will need to add a foundation. We recommend using a local contractor, landscape or decking company.
We provide foundation plan options that are based on the model of bunkie you purchase. Please note that your specific terrain may require different footing options. If you are building somewhere complicated (rocky, uneven, soft ground) and you are unsure what to do, it may be best to consult a professional. If your land is relatively flat and even, we are confident that you are just like the rest of us Bunkie Lifers and can DIY.
Check out David’s blog and video on building a basic foundation, and the importance of keeping it square and level.
What tools do I need to build a Bunkie?
Here is an awesome checklist as well that you can download for your future bunkie build. You can also check out David’s blog and video about what tools and materials you’ll need to build the bunkie of your dreams.
Most of our clients choose to insulate the roof and the floors to help retain heat in the colder seasons. Of course, you’ll want to add a heat source if you are trying to stretch the seasonality closer to four seasons.
If you want to learn more about heating your bunkie, check out this blog!
How do I heat my bunkie?
Check out David’s blog and video on how to heat your bunkie. There are a few different ways to do it based on whether you plan to be on or off grid in your location. We share lots of different ideas here to help you get the most of your bunkie through the year!
We recommend working with Tradecraft Heating and Cooling to get your bunkie temperature controlled if you are going the electric route. If you are looking to be off-grid and using solar, you can reach out to Canadian Off Grid Depot, our contact there Ryan would be happy to help you.
Alternatively, if you are looking to use a wood stove, we can send you some information on the Cubic Mini Wood Stove.
Can I view in person / pick up my order?
Want to come and see the Bunkies?
You can come and see the Bunkies at our factory in Rockwood, Ontario. We can show you the Bunkie Life Models and answer all your questions.
If you haven't yet booked - click HERE to select a time that works for you.
Absolutely! We offer pick-up in Ontario at our factory in Rockwood, ON. There is a $50 fee for loading onto your trailer.
Address: 4917 7 Line, Rockwood, ON
Please note that we do require you to have a true flat deck trailer without any protruding wheel wells or walls to ensure we can load you up with our forklift.
It is possible for you to pick up in another type of trailer, you may have to hand load your kit for this option. If you are purchasing one of our lofted models like the Haven or Haven Ultra, these kits are quite large (3850 - 4100lbs) and could take an hour to load even with 3 sets of hands helping!
How much is the deposit?
To place an order, we require a deposit of 65%, and the final 35% and delivery charge is due 7 days before the delivery date.
What is the delivery cost?
Delivery cost is based on your location. Please reach out to us here for a quote. We don’t charge delivery until your final invoice (prior to delivery), as we only charge what it costs to get from A to B, no upcharging!
You can read more about delivery and how it works across Canada and into the USA here.
Group Delivery can range from $300 (Local) - $2000 (Thunder Bay & Beyond), depending on where you are located in comparison to our factory in Rockwood. Group delivery is when we match you up with other locals who purchased a bunkie to cut the delivery cost as much as possible. This option comes with a Moffett (all-terrain forklift) to offload and place your bunkie.
Private delivery is $150 hourly, round trip plus an hour to offload. Group delivery usually is the more cost effective option, where Private delivery lets you pick a specific date and time for delivery. This option comes with a tilt-flatbed to offload your bunkie.
Out of Provice Depot Locations & Delivery Cost from Ontario:
*Please note that these costs are subject to change based on fuel, inflation, but give a good ball-park of what to expect. For the Yukon or Newfoundland, please reach out for more information.
Surrey, BC $850
Comox, BC $1200
Kelowna, BC $1200
Edmonton, AB $850
Saskatoon, SK $850
Springfield, MB $850
Scoudouc, NB $600
Dartmouth, NS $600
Whitehorse, YT $2500
St. John, NL $1000
For door to door delivery out of province, hourly costs can range from $175 - $265 hourly, round trip with an hour offloading time.
For pick-up, rates vary from $50 - $200. *Plus applicable taxes