3 Tiny Houses that will Make You Rethink Your Home

For years, the American dream included, seemingly by default, having a big house with a white picket fence, two children, and maybe a few household pets. In reality, whether big or small, millions of Americans worked to build or buy their own first homes for their families. Even today, home ownership remains an important rite of passage for many.

While there’s still a strong desire for vast, beautiful homes, “tiny” homes have recently been making their mark on the housing market. These little houses certainly aren’t the right fit for everyone, but boy, do they intrigue us! The pocket-sized living spaces pack a big punch into a small space.

Here are 3 of our favorite tiny houses available on the market today. Which one do you like most?

The Escher by New Frontier Tiny Homes

While it looks like a hulking fifth-wheel camper, the Escher is anything but. Step inside its starboard-side sliding glass doors and feast your eyes on its rich interior.

Decked out in dark-stained wood from floor to ceiling, you’ll first notice the small living area. It may seem small and minimally furnished but that’s just because the additional seating is hidden! Benches and a dining table can all be pulled out from under the small staircase leading to the quaint kitchen.

The kitchen smartly houses an energy efficient washer-dryer unit, a compact dishwasher, a deep basin sink, a gas range, a refrigerator and freezer, and a surprising amount of cabinet and countertop space.

Pass through the kitchen and you’ll see the master bedroom. The queen bed lifts up to reveal storage space for clothes and shoes while the walls have small sections of shelving for books. Shut out the rest of the world by closing the small pocket doors on either side of the bedroom doorway.

On the opposite side of the house, you’ll find a small “hallway” with a ladder leading to a loft area. The loft has a small open area and space for a second queen bed. That’s right – this tiny house has two bedrooms!

The modern bathroom is spacious and has a gorgeous stone shower with a glass door. There’s plenty of storage space for toiletries in the built-in shelving next to the sink and hidden closet.

We love this little family hideaway.

Foy and Louisa Brown’s “Chateau Bathtub” in Maine as seen in Maine Home + Design Magazine

This floating oasis took 10 years to plan and complete but the long haul was totally worth it. Originally intended to be a tiny rental for guests, designer-builders Foy and Louisa Brown realized they loved their creation so much (and knew guests had the potential to trash their beautiful handiwork), they didn’t want to offer it to anyone else.

The tiny space is a true “off-grid” home – their usual floating location in Penobscot Bay, Maine, doesn’t even lend itself to consistent cell service. To stay in touch with those at home on the island of North Haven, the couple keeps a VHF radio handy. Otherwise, they’re in their own paradise.

The Brown’s front deck is home to several plants and comfy Adirondack chairs perfect for an evening spent gazing at the stars. Just inside the front door is the couple’s small living and dining areas, followed by the kitchen in the back and another door leading to the back deck area where the couple moors its boats.

The lofted bedroom features exposed ceiling beams and big skylights to let in natural light. It’s a cozy spot and unlike many other tiny homes, the bed is actually raised off the floor!

The Browns don’t rely on electricity to power their home: They use oil lanterns and lamps to light and help heat the interior and propane tanks serve as to power the fridge and cooking range. A car battery draws water into the kitchen sink and outdoor shower on demand and is heated by the propane tanks. Beyond those basics, the Browns don’t need much.

We can’t think of a more enticing watery escape.

TIKKU by Casagrande Laboratory

This “little” house might be just a concept in the works for future city builds, but we can’t get enough of how innovative it is.

Architect Marco Casagrande designed the TIKKU to fit inside a typical parking spot. In an interview with Fast Company, Casagrande explained his thought process:

“All the streets in cityscapes are based on car dimensions. This I found a little bit strange. We have all this talk about the density of cars getting less and less in cities, and at the same time, we are talking about people moving into cities . . . but we don’t have space to build. Nobody has been questioning car parking spaces. They are everywhere. So this talk about no land to build in cities is nonsense: It’s everywhere, but it’s just for cars.”

Unlike the other two homes in our tiny house lineup, the TIKKU expands up, giving its dwellers more room to spread out. Each of its 3 floors can serve a different purpose and no space is wasted.

The building materials are also innovative – it’s “spacial modules” are constructed from cross-laminated timber (or “CLT,” which is 5 times lighter than the typical reinforced concrete used to build homes), making its walls especially lightweight and accounts for its ability to rocket skyward. A sandbox foundation keeps the house evenly weighted and stationary. It’s so easy to assemble, in fact, that Casagrande and his colleagues boast it can be done in a single night.

TIKKU is completely eco-friendly. The house is outfitted with solar panels for energy and the toilets are dry. It’s one caveat: There’s no shower or place for a washing machine or other electronic appliances we’re so accustomed to having. Said Casagrande, “Modern man has to die a bit in order to be reborn.

Each floor module can be customized to fit any desire. Make one floor the kitchen, another the bedroom, and another a work and relax space. The TIKKU model in Helsinki even features a greenhouse at its top!

We’ll be interested to see if this city design takes off in the next few years.

Tiny houses are fun to look at but aren’t always the most reasonable places to raise a family or call “home” long-term. Despite that, we sure enjoy thinking about packing a bag and hitting the road in some of these little gems – especially the ones that are made to travel!

What’s your favorite tiny house in our tiny list? Have you found a tiny house that’s inspired you?

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