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The Tiny House Revolution: Downsizing Your Lifestyle

Tiny House February 15, 2017

Many people are finally letting go of what we sometimes call “The American Dream”: A marriage, two and a half kids, a dog, a good paying job, and a nice big house. And the accumulation of “stuff” has been at the forefront of this myth. For these folks a more minimal, manageable life holds a big attraction. Enter the tiny house.

Once the province of the retired, like RV living, more and more Americans are opting for the tiny life. Many of these tiny houses are built to be mobile so that its inhabitants can visit places of interest, and live on the road. For those of you who work and can do so remotely, but still wish to downsize your living space, the tiny house is an ideal option.

Lots of people take it on themselves to get their hands dirty and build their own tiny houses. An Alliance of professional builders promoted the use of ethical building practices and guidelines and this was carried on by the American Tiny House Association, which deals with issues of zoning and coding.

Tiny houses can be as small as 120 square feet and as large as 500 square feet, and still be considered a tiny house.

Benefits of Tiny House Living

You can divest yourself of unused and useless “stuff”. There are so many things humans can really do without – you’d be amazed at how much clutter we can get rid of and still be happy.

The cost of living in a tiny house is much more reasonable than living in a large house. Utilities are all less, and you spend much less time cleaning and maintaining your tiny house. And buying or building your own tiny house costs but a fraction of what living large does. You no longer need to live paycheck to paycheck with an exorbitant mortgage.

Tiny living forces you to be organized with the things you choose to keep in your tiny house, and therefore is more efficient.

For those who wish to “live green” the tiny house is just the ticket. You can use water collection tanks, wind turbines, and solar energy to power your tiny house and in the long run save thousands of dollars in electrical bills.

Self-sufficiency is another big reason that people opt for the tiny house. Especially if your tiny house is mobile, you can pick up and go whenever you please.

Many cities across the country are providing zoning regulations for tiny house communities, and you can actually live tiiny in a real neighborhood.

The above photograph is a wonderful example of how you can compact your life and still have all the comforts of home.

Living the tiny house lifestyle isn’t for everyone, but if you are ready for letting go of the “I need my stuff” syndrome, it may be just the thing for you.

Sources: 3 Tiny Houses That Let You Live Green-And Off The Grid, What is the Tiny House Movement?

Photo credits: Benjamin Chin, Google Images

Click here for a bigger gallery of a bunch of various tiny homes.

7551 total views, 10 today

Choosing a Counter Top for Your Kitchen

Interior Design February 12, 2017

Your kitchen is the hub and main gathering place of your home. And counter tops are a major factor in deciding on the color palette of that room. So the choice of your counter tops is  a very important way to enhance your personal style. With so many options around, choosing your counter tops can be very confusing. Here is a list of 6 types of counter tops that are the most popular among homeowners.

Soapstone

Image: Premier Surfaces

Soapstone is a wonderful, choice for a busy kitchen. Durable, stain and bacteria resistant, it can withstand a lot of use while keeping your counter tops germ-free. At $80-$100 per square foot it may seem like a bit on the pricey side, but it a real investment in your home’s overall value.

Granite

Image: granitecountertops.net

Granite is a real go-to option because of its versatility, durability, wide variety of grains and colors. If it is well sealed it is more durable than most other surfaces. It can be very cost-efficient running as low as $50 per square foot, but the price can go up depending on how customized the stone is.

Quartz

Image: mikeguss.com

If your home is very customized, quarts may be just for you. It comes in almost every hue imaginable, and is engineered of quartz, resins and color pigments. Non-porous, and great if your home is “green”, quartz counter tops come at a price though. They can run anywhere from $95-$105 per square foot.

Concrete

Image: Abington Concrete

Concrete may not be as cost-effective as other surfaces but it is very easily customized to your specifications. Different, colors, textures and stains, can make this surface your own very easily, and properly sealed this might be worth the investment. It can cost from $100-$150.

Laminate

Image: Classic Cabinets and Interiors

Laminate is a very popular alternative for many who swear by it. It can simulate many more expensive surfaces, and with a price tag of $8-$20 per square foot it seems very cost-effective. But it is not a very durable surface so it would not be recommended for very busy cooks and heavily trafficked kitchens.

Marble

Image: MSI Stone

Not being the most durable counter top surface, marble is still considered the surface to choose. It develops a brilliant patina as it’s used, and comes in a wide variety of designs on its surface. The other down side is that marble can scratch and stain more than other stones. At a cost of $70-$100, it is a classic choice for many.

Source: houzz.com

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Paint Colors for a Calming Bedroom

Uncategorized February 2, 2017

Your bedroom should be a sanctuary of peace, calm, and renewal. It is a place where you unwind and shed the stress of the day. Studies have shown that colors have a huge effect on mood, and the color that you paint your bedroom can influence the kind of sleep you have. Here are five painting options  that can enrich and aid in a restful night.

Lavender

Image Bedroom Design Ideas

Soft purple colors are considered to have the ability to be stress-reducing, and this lavender is both cool and sophisticated. It is perfect for a master bedroom. You can counter the cool nature of the paint color with warmer colors on your floors, head board, and accents.

Dark Grey-Blue

Image Pinterest

Darker colors can provide a cozy ambiance in a bedroom. And they need not make a small room seem smaller. Break up the grey with lighter colors in artwork. furniture, and flooring. This is both a sophisticated and romantic color scheme, and can help provide  a peaceful, calm feeling. If you prefer a bit more light in your bedroom, use a pale, soft grey on the walls and complimentary colors in pillows, accents and bed linens.

Image Houzz

Nature inspires with this color. Think of a cool autumn day with a crisp blue sky. This is a very relaxing way to make your bedroom your sanctuary. Counter the cool feeling of the blue with warm accent colors in pillows and cushions, and bed covers. A warm area rug or other floor covering will also be a compliment to the blue walls.

Neutral Green

Image Pinterest

A soft green hue with a touch a grey is also nature-inspired. Bring the outside in with a pistachio, or sage green, and use other colors of nature in accents and bed linens. This is a warmer option than the cooler colors mentioned above, but is still clean, fresh, and relaxing.

Bedrooms are the most sacred room in the house. They should offer you a chance to shed the activities of the day, to find some solace, and soothe your soul. The colors you use in your bedroom should enhance this and promote peace.

Source: http://www.houzz.com/ideabooks/56675610/list/set-the-mood-5-colors-for-a-calming-bedroom

Featured image courtesy of Visi Build

228 total views, 17 today

These Quonset Inexpensive Kit Homes Start at Less than $8,000

Metal Buildings February 1, 2017

How many of you have looked into these Quonset building kit homes First thing you might notice is that there are a couple of standard types, based mostly on the roof. These are P and S styles. According to SteelMaster, Quonset homes are becoming more and more popular with the DIY crowd; they can be erected quickly and provide a solid, secure, long lasting solution for most housing needs. Quonset buildings were originally developed as a sturdy answer to extreme weather conditions, and are manufactured in two styles best suited for residential applications The P Model is the style most commonly seen in use as a garage, workshop or for Quonset Hut homes. It's straight walls and pitched roof present a more traditional look than other Quonset huts

How many of you have looked into these Quonset building kit homes? First thing you might notice is that there are a couple of standard types, based mostly on the roof. These are P and S styles. According to SteelMaster,

“Quonset homes are becoming more and more popular with the DIY crowd; they can be erected quickly and provide a solid, secure, long lasting solution for most housing needs. Quonset buildings were originally developed as a sturdy answer to extreme weather conditions, and are manufactured in two styles best suited for residential applications:

“The “P” Model is the style most commonly seen in use as a garage, workshop or for Quonset Hut homes. It’s straight walls and pitched roof present a more traditional look than other Quonset huts such as the typical cylindrical Q-Model style building.

“The “S” Model has a domed roof with straight sidewalls. This is a stronger design than the “P” model, and an excellent choice for use as a barn or workshop in areas with heavy wind and snow.

“Both P & S Models are ideally suited to residential homes as they have straight sides resulting in the maximum amount of livable space. Both can easily be tailored to your aesthetic requirements with custom end walls. These can be made of steel, hardy board or even finished with stucco or brick. It is also important to note that the buildings can be insulated and that a mezzanine-type second floor can be added to larger buildings over 30 feet in width. End walls can also be fitted with windows and the roof structure can easily be fitted with skylight panels for additional natural light.”

One thing about this building style is that it is easy to set up, and another point is that it is inexpensive. We priced out the residential models, and didn’t even pick the smallest possible size. We picked a 20X40, 10 foot high unit (they go lower and higher is size and cost), and the estimate was $8,000. So they start at less than that, even for residential ones. We also priced out a smaller one for garage purposing, and the estimate was $1,200. Of course, you do have to think about other building costs, such as transportation, laying foundation, and other expenses. Anyway, we’ve included photos of a variety of completed SteelMaster ones in the gallery you can check out (link below), from little plain garage-style ones to elaborate multi-floor houses.

One of the biggest companies for these Quonset style homes is SteelMaster. I recently saw a couple who had built a 40X40 home with their product, an S model, made from 22-gauge Galvalume steel, with an 18-foot peak at the center, and they spend less than $35,000 on the building, they said. And the SteelMaster metal home materials were guaranteed for 30 years (so long as the building was secured to the earth).

Here is our gallery of Quonset style cabins, homes and other structures. These photographs were taken by Elizabeth Anderson for SteelMaster Buildings. To see more about SteelMaster and other house builders we’ve indexed in our Home Designers and Builders Directory. You can search the company’s name and look builders near your area. And to see more metal homes, click here.

Check out the gallery of photos below (all images on our site are expandable, even the featured images at the top of most articles).

566539 total views, 1360 today

This Comfortable Tiny House Design (with Plans)

Houses February 1, 2017

Chill and Relax in a Comfy House

All of us, I think it would be fair to say, want to own a house of some sort, and some of us want a small or even a tiny home. Well, here is a nice smaller-sized house (with plans) we recently came across, and thought we’d share. It’s one that comes in several models, including a single-pitched roof and a standard two-pitch.

They use a lot of wood finishing for the interior, and it looks snappy when painted white (or probably any other color as well). Check out the one with the patio built around it in the woods.

They also seem to all incorporate a lot of glazing — look at those big window areas in the main rooms. And patios as well. Overall, a very simple, clean design for a small house, or tiny house, depending on how you look at things.

THE GUY

The guy 1
Alk. 19 769 –

Floor area 20.0 m²
Porch 34.5 m²
In total 54.5 m²

The guy 2
Alk. 21 077, –

Floor area 25.0 m²
Porch 34.5 m²
In total 59.5 m²

CRESCENT

Prices vary according to the selected timber strength.

Crescent-30 1A
Alk. 31 600, –

Floor area 30.0 m²
Porch 11.0 m²
In total 41.0 m²

Prices vary according to the selected timber strength.

BUOY

Buoy 10

Alk. 14 659 –

Floor area 19.5 m²
Porch 24.0 m²
In total 43.5 m²

Buoy 20
Alk. 16 529 –

Floor area 23.5 m²
Porch 25.5 m²
In total 49.0 m²

Check out the gallery of photos below (all images on our site are expandable, even the featured image at the top).

Find more from Honka, and other companies we’ve indexed in our Home Designers and Builders Directory. You can search the company’s name and look builders near your area. And to see more houses, click here.

11031 total views, 23 today

IKEA’s Better Shelter Wins Design of the Year 2016

Prefab January 30, 2017

IKEA Better Shelter flat pack house

Just an update on IKEA’s prefab venture, which we covered in detail a while ago. The flat-pack shipped tiny house has now won a big design award: the Beazley Design of the Year 2016.

The flat-pack IKEA “Better Shelter,” as it’s called, is mainly a refugee housing solution in conception, but many people are now thinking about it as a possible tiny house option. Certainly, it’s very portable and ship-able, and very inexpensive (read about that here).

The award it won was for the project that best meets the criteria of design that “promotes or delivers change,” “captures the spirit of the year,” “enables access,” and “work that has extended design practice.”

There are other architecture categories as well involved in the awards, but the IKEA “Better Shelter” beat out Digital, Fashion, Graphics, Product and Transport, for the top honor of Design of the Year.

“Innovative, humanitarian and implemented, Better Shelter has everything that a Beazley Design of the Year should have,” stated on of the judges, Dr. Jana Scholze of Kingston University.

IKEA flat packThis IKEA flat pack house was originally developed in 2013 and has taken some big volume orders from the UN. Those who worked on it include: Johan Karlsson, Dennis Kanter, Christian Gustafsson, John van Leer, Tim de Haas, Nicolò Barlera, UNHCR.

To date, almost 65 million of these IKEA flatpack homes have been distributed around the globe.

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A San Francisco Based Startup Has Developed a Robot that 3D Prints Micro Homes. Cost Savings Are Estimated at 70% Compared to Traditional Methods

Tiny House January 27, 2017

San Francisco-based start-up Apis Cor have been working for a solution to homelessness and a lack of affordable homes – and they appear to have come up with an answer.

The Apis Cor team hit headlines recently as they achieved a world first by creating an entire house using a 3D printer – living up to their simple slogan “we print buildings.” More impressively still, the 400 foot square home was completed in just 24 hours.

 

2173 total views, 211 today

A New Type of Building Style: Flatpack Homes

Prehab Home January 23, 2017

Flatpack Homes

We’ve talked a lot about prefab homes, and they have their strengths to be sure, but now people are also talking about another building style called “flatpack homes.” They’re kit homes — actually they’re considered a type of modular home — that come flat in a box (or without a box), and then they’re set up.

This one here is one built by a company who knows cold temperature. Their flatpack modular home is Scandinavian in design and thought. It’s called the “Next House” and it’s out of Stockholm. According to the company:

“Next House is a Stockholm based company, active in architecture and construction industries, with a clear and simple vision: creating and delivering beautiful designed homes created by award winning architects.

“Next House was started on the basis that there is a need for a well constructed, elegant and functional designed home at a reasonable price. Our goal is to harmonize Swedish leading building know-how with optimal timing and low impact to the environment.

“Since Sweden is one of the premier low-impact countries in the world, Next House has followed a long tradition of environmentally friendly thinking. An important issue when putting the resources of the planet in focus is how to use energy responsibly.

“Regardless of whether you use energy to heat up or cool down your house you will use less if you house is compact. Next House models have a maximum net need of energy less than 75 kWh/m3, in Sweden this is classified as a low-energy- house.”

Their model homes start with a cabin of 15 sqm to a villa of 400 sqm. Their modular wood construction technology provides our customers with multitude of living area options.

The small XXS Next House is 150 sq. ft. with kitchen. Cost: $21,500 (you assemble).  The Large Next House is just 148 square meters (approximately 1,500 square feet).

Check out the gallery of photos below (all images on our site are expandable, even the featured image at the top).

Find more from Next House, and other farmhouse builders we’ve indexed in our Home Designers and Builders Directory. You can search the company’s name and look builders near your area. And to see more modular homes, click here.

 

12967 total views, 3 today

Finest Metal Building Home for Small Families

Metal Buildings January 11, 2017

Finest Metal Building Home for Small Families

Morton Buildings has done it again, with this beautiful home with a traditional look and modern amenities. The home boasts a very large front porch that covers the entire front of the house and a convenient two-car garage. Located in Kellyville, OK, this house is also fortunate enough to have beautiful rural scenery surrounding it deep brick red roof and neutral colored siding.

Built for anyone who like space and a an interior that can be unique and versatile depending on what you need, this home is fitting for small to mid-sized families or those who plan to grow their families. With its traditional look, this home can be a lifetime home, and this Morton Buildings house, though built with small families in mind, can also be a multi-generational space, large enough for a mid-sized family to be comfortable, but also the kind of house that gets passed down from generation to generation.

Some more information about this metal building:

Project Number: B070006642

Location:Kellyville, OK
Dimensions: 42’W x 10’4″H x 60’L + 24’W x 9’H x 24’L
This home was built for Curtis & Lesta of Kellyville, OK

Special Features:

Morton’s Hi-Rib Steel
Cupolas
Porches
Wainscot
Windows w/ Shutters
Morton’s Energy Performer Insulation Package

Find more from Morton steel buildings, and the metal and steel design and build companies we’ve indexed in our Home Designers and Builders Directory. You can search the company’s name and look builders near your area. And to see more metal homes, click here.

9464 total views, 14 today

Unique Texas Style Country Home with Brick Wainscot

Houses January 11, 2017

Unique Texas Style Country Home w/ Brick Wainscot

This stunning Texas style home is made for those looking for grandeur and a luxury style of living. Right out of fictitious Southfork, for those who remember the TV show Dallas, this home is the perfect place to settle down for a lifetime. It is also an amazing home to pass down to the next generation.

What stands out the most about the beauty of this home is its brick Wainscot, which is reminiscent of times past. The brick Wainscot gives this large family estate the look of a much more expensive home. The Texas style home sits on beautiful landscaping which can be changed and customized to your liking. This scenery gives a home buyer ideas on how to enhance the beauty of this stellar home. This is a dream house, one of a kind.

To know if this house can be built with steel frames or metal sidings, please seek advice from the contractor.

Some more information about this house:

Dimensions:Living Area:3,167 sq.ft. Width: 71′ 11″

Find more from Dream Home Source, and other companies we’ve indexed in our Home Designers and Builders Directory. You can search the company’s name and look builders near your area. And to see more houses, click here.

1362 total views, 1 today

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  • How many of you have looked into these Quonset building kit homes First thing you might notice is that there are a couple of standard types, based mostly on the roof. These are P and S styles. According to SteelMaster, Quonset homes are becoming more and more popular with the DIY crowd; they can be erected quickly and provide a solid, secure, long lasting solution for most housing needs. Quonset buildings were originally developed as a sturdy answer to extreme weather conditions, and are manufactured in two styles best suited for residential applications The P Model is the style most commonly seen in use as a garage, workshop or for Quonset Hut homes. It's straight walls and pitched roof present a more traditional look than other Quonset huts

    These Quonset Inexpensive Kit Homes Start at Less than $8,000

    by on February 1, 2017 - 0 Comments

    How many of you have looked into these Quonset building kit homes? First thing you might notice is that there are a couple of standard types, based mostly on the roof. These are P and S styles. According to SteelMaster, “Quonset homes are becoming more and more popular with the DIY crowd; they can be […]

  • summer tiny home

    Summer Tiny Home Idea - Super Simple Design

    by on February 27, 2017 - 0 Comments

    Here’s a DIY tiny house unlike any you might have seen before. These fellows did it with just a bit of lumber and that piece of corrugated metal. Interested in trying something like this yourself? They’re a couple of Californians, named Matt & Margo, and they built this one over a dry creek bed (usually dry, anyway). […]

  • Chill and Relax in a Comfy House

    This Comfortable Tiny House Design (with Plans)

    by on February 1, 2017 - 0 Comments

    All of us, I think it would be fair to say, want to own a house of some sort, and some of us want a small or even a tiny home. Well, here is a nice smaller-sized house (with plans) we recently came across, and thought we’d share. It’s one that comes in several models, […]

  • What Does it Cost to Live On a Houseboat Year-Round

    by on April 25, 2017 - 0 Comments

    The idea of living on a houseboat year-round sounds like being on a permanent vacation, but if you’ve never done it, there will be things that will come up that can be quite costly. But is it necessarily expensive to live year-round on a houseboat. Let’s explore what it takes to live this dream and […]

  • The Tiny House Revolution: Downsizing Your Lifestyle

    by on February 15, 2017 - 0 Comments

    Many people are finally letting go of what we sometimes call “The American Dream”: A marriage, two and a half kids, a dog, a good paying job, and a nice big house. And the accumulation of “stuff” has been at the forefront of this myth. For these folks a more minimal, manageable life holds a […]