The summer months mean family vacations for many people across the country and many people these days are looking for alternative ways to spend their holidays. To get away from the typical hotel or resort, some people camp during the summer and some people stay in unusual places like river camps, tipis, sheep wagons and even tree houses. Companies like VRBO and Airbnb are making it easier for people to experience these fun and unusual places to stay.
If you have your own tiny, small or Cozy home, you will know about the satisfaction that comes with living and being happier in a smaller space. It would be nice to share that feeling with visitors without having to have them take over your own sacred space. Maybe you could build another tiny house that is just used as a vacation rental? Cozy Home Plans offers several very tiny home plans that are affordable to build and could end up being a good source of income as a short term or long term rental.
The first is the Cozy Cube, which was featured on Tiny House Talk. The Cozy Cube is 196 square feet and two story with an upstairs balcony. This home will probably have to go through a county inspection before it is started, but it offers a private space for several people.
The brand new Limbo Rock is for someone who really wants to challenge themselves with living small and it’s the perfect guest or rental option since it’s only 64 square feet. It has a single bed, a toilet and some great skylights.
The cute Sprinkle Drop looks just like a typical guest house and comes in at just under 200 square feet. It features a great room with a tiny kitchen and a small bathroom with a shower. The kitchen doubles as a food prep area, eating area and small office.
The Thimble Peak is a Cozy Home basic that comes in at 288 square feet and offers a large covered porch and a studio room that includes a kitchen. It also has a full bathroom and an area for a washer and dryer.
Cozy Home Plans has many other tiny house ideas on its Flickr pages. Check them out for your own guest house idea.
How fantastic would it be if all micro, tiny & small homes were 100% sustainable? It makes complete sense to me. Tiny homes offer the best opportunities to experiment with all the different aspects of sustainable resources due to there size. This sure would also be one way to get the tiny home critics to have something positive to say about these sized homes, while at the same time challenging their environmental consciousness even more.
There are so many sustainable & green energy options and they include:
In addition to these renewable energy options, there are also so many different types of recycling efforts that can be utilized for maximizing of material use. Where do we start on this 100% sustainable mission? By incorporating ideas like:
Creating tiny homes that are 100% sustainable is possible. It requires effort and a lot of creative thinking. We are halfway there by having a Cozy Home!
Cozy, Kevin B Harrington
Many of the popular tiny homes are built on a portable foundation like a trailer that can be towed around the country, or even on skids that can be moved around a piece of property. However, if you are thinking of putting down roots in a small or Cozy Home, you will most likely want a strong and solid foundation. There’s a saying that a home is only as good as its hat (roof) and boots. Let’s go over those boots.
There are several different types of foundations for a small home. A slab foundation, a concrete perimeter foundation, a basement foundation and a crawl space foundation. In some hotter parts of the world, some homes are built on a pier and beam foundation. Each of these foundations are built in different sections of the country and each have their own pros and cons.
Most homes in the South are built on a slab. A slab foundation is usually concrete poured directly onto the ground after the soil is removed and the grading is complete. It’s a quick, efficient and more inexpensive way to build a foundation and the pro is that concrete rather than wood is used to support the weight of the home.
Most homes in the north part of the country have a basement foundation. These types of foundations are constructed at least 8-10 feet into the ground with a concrete slab and concrete walls around the slab. The house rests on the concrete walls and the basement can act as an extension of the home. Some basements can be finished to include an extra room or storage and laundry space and some are used as a refuge during tornadoes or other fierce storms. A basement foundation does add additional cost to a small home.
Concrete Perimeter Foundation
For homeowners who want the stability of concrete, but don’t want to have a basement, a concrete perimeter foundation is a cheaper solution. A concrete perimeter foundation is formed by excavating around the outside dimensions of where the house will sit and pouring a layer of concrete known as footer into the ground. After the footer is poured, concrete blocks are cemented together on top of the footer to provide concrete block walls for the house to rest on.
Crawl Space Foundation
Crawl space foundations are usually built where the frost line is not as deep. This type of foundation is built above the ground allowing just enough room to crawl underneath to access wiring and plumbing. There are stem walls on the perimeters, pierced in-between and then a girder system and floor joists on top of that.
Pier and Beam Foundation
A pier and beam foundation consists of wood beams or posts that sit on top of concrete piers, with the house resting on the wood beams. The advantage of this type of foundation is that it is easier to construct and less expensive than a concrete perimeter foundation. A pier and beam foundation may be implemented in areas where there is a low risk of earthquakes or hurricane-velocity winds because the foundation is not embedded as deep into the ground as a concrete foundation.
One of the first stock small house plans to be offered here at Cozy was the El Capitan; it’s also available in a simple outdoor shed too by the way. The exterior look and style was influenced by a picture of a garden shed that I saw on the internet and immediately thought “how cool is that”. However, the inside is 100% pure Cozy Micro, Little, Tiny or small living at it finest.
At only 307 sq. ft. the El Capitan’s layout never ceases to amaze me on what can be done with it. We now have 4 different configurations for the inside, depending on your needs or wants in a small house. All versions have your basic full-time needs covered with a great place for sleeping, cooking, relaxing, bathroom and laundry facilities.
The original El Capitan is a perfect mixture of Pool & Guest House with bathroom access from both outside and from within.
We changed things up a bit by creating the perfect writer’s retreat, that also serves double duty as a private guest house called the “Studio”.
This layout shows off my love of cooking and perhaps is Cozy’s smallest and most perfect “Gourmet Kitchen” granny flat to date. This one has two different layouts offering both a Full and ¾ Bath option. Both designs work well in my opinion and it would be tough to have to choose between them. I guess it would boil down to the loss of 12” of closet space.
Last but certainly not least is the “Fireplace” layout, which was just created last night and coming in at #2 just behind the Humble Pie for smallest Cozy Home with a fireplace. This version has just about everything for making it the perfect backyard or full time Casita; I think!
The Kitchen has all the basics covered.
Rendered with a Full size Bed but a Queen could still fit in the space.
The Bath has a 48” shower, storage closet and a nice sized vanity.
Storage areas are provided by closets, cabinets and furniture.
The stackable Washer/Dryer fits nicely into the Bath, but if not needed could easily provide an additional closet space or a full sized tub.
Space is my 6th “Floor Plan Essential”. This particular layout has seating for 3 with the desk chair making it 4. The backdoor also provides another way of combining in and outdoor living.
The only negative thing I see is… The act of actually eating what you have cooked at a table is somewhat compromised, it could be accomplished at the desk area, flip-up dining table or the old stand-by… TV trays.
This brings up the point that my renderings are precisely that, my vision of what it could be and how the furniture “could” be laid out inside. Your version could have two recliners with room for a table and no desk at all.
Our design Motto is “Let our signature be yours”, all of these plans are 100% customizable. Let my vision be your inspiration, we can then meld them together and create the perfect Cozy home… just for you.
Cozy, Kevin B Harrington
Now that the weather has warmed up around most of North America, the garden centers and landscaping stores are full of people pushing around carts laden with pavers and patio stones to build that perfect outdoor patio. A Cozy, small or tiny home can also benefit from an outdoor patio. They offer a great refuge to sit and enjoy your garden as well as an extension of the indoors. Patios can be placed anywhere in your yard: right off a back door, tucked in a secluded corner or they can even encompass the majority of your yard.
For a Cozy home, a smaller patio might work best. Not only will it be less expensive to construct and you could do the labor yourself, but it will not overwhelm a smaller home. With a good design you can also fit an eating area, some plants, a barbecue and maybe even a small water feature. Pre-cut paver stones or bricks make a good patio and they can be laid down in a variety of patterns and styles. Natural stone pavers create a more organic look, but will need to be adjusted a few times to fit together – like a puzzle. Both types of pavers can have sand, small pebbles or “gator dust” pour in between them to create a smooth, seamless patio. Also make sure that you create a level and stable patio that can support foot traffic, chairs and tables. Transition areas between the yard and the home should also be smooth and should not have sharp corners or places where you can trip.
Here are some additional design tips for building a small patio for a small home (from Better Homes & Gardens):
• Make the design attractive: It should complement the house and landscape, as well as provide a comfortable living space.
• Don’t be square. Add slabs at the corners of paver patio, for instance, to make a unique geometric form. Curves often make the best use of space.
• Create a hidden or enclosed patio away from the house. It is one of the simplest outdoor rooms you can make. All you need is level ground, comfortable seating, and the shelter of trees and shrubs.
• Extend a patio’s usefulness with a roof or partial cover. Position the patio to be warmed (but not baked) by the sun; a southeast or southwest location is ideal.
• Keep in mind the costs of maintenance over the anticipated lifetime of the paving material, when figuring the patio’s cost initially.
Anyone who looked at the “old version” of the A B See a year ago saw a very plain small house, devoid of any 3D love that most of my designs typically get. This was because it needed something, the layout just felt unfinished. A year later… it got the attention it needed with the addition of 54 sq. ft. This made all the difference and made this a truly Cozy home.
Larger and more open Kitchen & Dining area.
It now has access to the backyard like all homes should have.
A door now separates the W/D from the hallway for a cleaner more finished look.
Larger closet in Bedroom #2, for holding more stuff!!! Because stuff is not a four letter word here at Cozy HP.
Adding the one car garage now makes this an ideal paired home choice too.
Including the 6 essentials is quite a bit easier when we have this much square footage to play with. Of course, most people think under 600 sq. ft. make’s a good sized Kitchen & Gathering room but not us! You could fit 3 Cozy Cubes, 2 Thimble Peeks or a Crested Butte and a half in this foot print.
Now my “6 Must Haves”; decent Kitchen, room for a larger Bed, Bath that will fit two in a pinch, Storage, Washer & Dryer & Space to move around a bit.
#1 The half Galley & “U” Kitchen has 9 cabinets, plus a pantry with extra room for a built in buffet adding additional counter top space & appliance storage.
#2 Room for a Queen mattress in both bedroom #1 and #2.
#3 The full Bath includes room a standard 5’ tub or 60” shower pan, whichever is preferred.
#4 Lots of big closets for Storage.
#5 The stackable Washer/Dryer centrally located in the hall.
#6 The open Kitchen, Dinning & Gathering room creates a more Spacious feel and a great first impression.
Cozy Home Plans now has 20 different two bedroom small house plans in Flickr to choose from.
I was shocked by this number too! Had no idea that we had so many to choose from now and we will be adding a 20th one next week.
Our #1 goal is to make living the tiny lifestyle a reality for everyone. Offering realistic downsizing choices for singles & couples wanting a Cozy home, plus small families needing 3 or even 4 bedrooms.
Cozy, Kevin B Harrington
We all hope that when we simplify our lives into a tiny, small or Cozy home that our world will become a little more ideal. Unfortunately this is not the case in most locations these days. No matter what the size of your home, you can still be burglarized and what little items you do own could end up in someone else’s hands. Many tiny home owners these days are looking into home security systems and there are some great systems that are suitable for smaller spaces.
What type of system you buy will depend on how much you will want to spend and also how much coverage you want. It will also depend on how often you will be away from your home. You could go simple with a home security camera that sends the feed directly to your computer or TV, or a motion detector alarm system from an online store like the Home Security Store. Their one to two camera systems cost around $200 for wireless DVR security system and their hard-wired alarm kits are around $150. They also offer other burglary deterrents like warning window stickers, simulated cameras and small door alarms for around $30. Another inexpensive way to add your own security is to install outdoor motion lights that turn on when movement is detected around your home. You can also get a reliable watchdog from the local shelter. Also, remember to have good locks on all your doors and windows.
If you want a full security system, the Protection 1 company offers a full system with a 24-hour UL listed monitor, touchscreen keypad and a pet-friendly motion detector. This system also includes a remote arm/disarm option and a remote lock/unlock doors option. You can also get text alert and email notifications if your system is compromised. The cost of this system will depend on the size of your home and other options you may want.
Photo by Home Security Store