Builder makes artsy, affordable homes from junk

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by Andrew Horansky / KHOU 11 News

khou.com

Posted on September 28, 2012 at 5:53 PM

Updated Friday, Sep 28 at 6:02 PM

HOUSTON – A small community of artists has cropped up in Huntsville thanks to one man’s vision for turning trash into treasure.

Dan Phillips recycles junk to build eccentric, eclectic and affordable homes.

From beer label floors to cow bone counters to a ceiling made of picture frames, Phillip’s homes are far from cookie cutter.

"And when people see it, they go, ‘Oh, that’s what a recycled house looks like,’" Phillips said.

Some of his materials were donated, others came from dumpsters.

And the cost?

"Probably the studio and this house probably came in at $70,000 for a three-bed, three- bath home," Phillips said.

He began building the recycled homes 12 years ago in his hometown of Huntsville. His business is called Phoenix Commotion.

Phillips' goal was to create affordable homes for single parents and artists who appreciate his unique twist on homebuilding.

Chris and Jessica Grundy bought one of the homes a year ago. In fact, it was the reason they moved from San Diego to Huntsville. He records music and she’s a painter. For them, California was simply too expensive.

"We’d be moving from place to place and not really be able to put roots down somewhere," Jessica Grundy said.

A graphic artist was in a similar situation when he moved his family from Michigan.

"So we went home in March, packed everything up and we were down here in May," he said.

It’s a success story that has pumped new life into Huntsville by bringing new residents that would probably have never heard of the town otherwise.

 

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