A tiny house prototype stolen from a Canberra business appears to have made its way to a Queensland town 1,250 kilometres away in a matter of hours, according to the home’s owner.
The house, which is mounted on a trailer and valued at about $20,000, was stolen from Julie Bray’s Mitchell business late on Sunday.
“It was stolen from outside our office … at 8:15 Sunday night,” she said.
“Somebody who was in the vicinity heard angle grinding, came out and saw what was happening and called the police.”
But another surprise came when, less than a day later, Ms Bray received reports of the house appearing more than 1,000 kilometres away in rural Queensland.
“It was first spotted in Kingaroy at 5:30 on Monday night, then it was seen the next morning at Kilkivan, which is just north of Kingaroy, an hour north or something,” Ms Bray said.
“I was astounded.
“I don’t think I’ll need an engineering certificate for it now, it’s proven it can go very far, very fast.
Ms Bray said she posted pictures of the house on social media calling for help, and was confident the sighting in Queensland was legitimate.
“The guy that spotted it in Kingaroy was able to describe to me aspects of it that aren’t even in the photo,” she said.
“He was even able to describe a faded spot on the timber wall on the back … I remembered that we actually had a sign there, a business sign was on it, and they would have removed that.”
As of late Wednesday afternoon there were reports the house had been spotted as far north as Hervey Bay.
Reports of brown Falcon towing tiny house: police
ACT police confirmed they were investigating after attending the business following reports of a man tampering with the house, however it was gone by the time they arrived.
On Wednesday afternoon Queensland Police said they had issued an alert to all officers in the area to keep an eye out for the tiny house.
Gympie Police Senior Sergeant Gregg Davey said the tiny house was at one point parked at Kilkivan, but by the time police arrived the car and the house were gone.
“It was actually observed parked on the Wide Bay Highway in a park area,” he said.
“Some of the locals noticed the tiny house and because it was so peculiar they went over and had a look at it.
“It was observed to be attached to what appeared to be an old-model brown Falcon, bordering on being maroon, and that vehicle possible had either ACT or Victorian plates attached.”
Senior Sergeant Davey said it was an unusual case.
“In my 30 years experience I can certainly say I’ve never encountered this, [but] I’ve certainly watched a fair bit about these tiny houses on television,” he said.
“It’s important anyone with information gets onto the Queensland Police and we’ll make sure we get a car out there.”
Business ‘to lose thousands’
The tiny house, which is designed to be affordable yet large enough to live in, was an unfinished promotional model for the business, and Ms Bray said without it she would be thousands of dollars out of pocket.
Once plumbing is installed and final additions are made, the house would be worth $30,000.
“It needs to come back in perfect nick, I need it for a show in five and a half weeks, and I suppose otherwise send me 20 grand,” she said.
“They’re not cheap to replace and I haven’t really got time to build another one before the show.”