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The Kingfisher Tiny House: 144 Sq. Ft. Home on Wheels

I’ve seen this tiny house floating around on the Internet but I never knew where it came from.

Today I’m excited to introduce you to the Kingfisher by Jade Craftsman Builders.

It’s an 8′ x 18′ stick built mobile home which totals around 144 sq. ft. inside without including the loft.

It’s designed by Matthew Swett of Taproot Architects and built by JADE Craftsman Builders.

kingfisher-tiny-house-001

Photos by Jim Caroll and Michael Foley

I encourage you to enjoy the rest of the virtual tour below:

Living Area

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Looks like that could be a futon in the end for downstairs sleeping if you wanted.

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Above is your ladder that leads you to the loft along with some open space.

Kitchen

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Sleeping Loft

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Bathroom with Shower

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kingfisher-tiny-house-007

Floor Plan

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Resources

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Alex

Alex is a contributor and editor for TinyHouseTalk.com and the always free Tiny House Newsletter. He has a passion for exploring and sharing tiny homes (from yurts and RVs to tiny cabins and cottages) and inspiring simple living stories. We invite you to send in your story and tiny home photos too so we can re-share and inspire others towards a simple life too. Thank you!
{ 31 comments… add one }
  • Dominick Bundy January 2, 2014, 3:07 pm

    Love everything about this tiny house. especially the side entrance.

    • Crissie January 3, 2014, 5:48 pm

      I am a big fan of the side entrance as well! Beautifully done!

  • Patrick January 4, 2014, 7:28 pm

    Very attractive, functional design. Especially like the generous kitchen counter space. Only question I have is: Why is there no lavatory sink in the bathroom? With that bump-out cabinet over the trailer tongue, there would be the perfect place to locate one — an extra piece of “real estate” normally not found in trailer-based, tiny house floor plans.

    • Soody March 1, 2014, 3:44 pm

      I think the bump out IS the extra. Underneath the window area is where the LP tanks usually live, accessible from outside.

    • Doc March 25, 2014, 11:38 pm

      It is never a good idea to put plumbing in an exterior wall if there’s any chance of frost/freeze. Those pipes will burst when temps plunge. It’s not the same in a kitchen where it runs well inside the home in the back of a cupboard. Just FYI.

    • Mark April 12, 2014, 7:02 am

      There is more than enough space to have one of those toilets that have an integrated sink on top of the cistern.

  • Dan Neumeyer January 25, 2014, 2:25 pm

    Hi Alex: you found us! Matthew Swett – Architect alerted me to our appearance on your great site.

    Some responses to comments at FB and TinyHouseTalk:

    The couch in the Great Room does pull out and become a bed.

    In response to Jason; we wanted a balance of optimizing every square inch – with a feeling of wholeness, balance, proportion. For this reason, we chose to maintain the vaulted great room, rather than extending the loft further. There is enough room in the loft for 2 to sleep, good reading lights, a dormer for added natural light and space. (Or it could be the lego-loft.)

    Frank is right; the propane heater (from Dickinson Marine) is awesome and can easily provide enough heat, even in the NE this winter! One drawback: while the heater is top quality, it doesn’t come with thermostat options or pilot light. So, you need to open the door to light it, and turn it up/down/off to adjust. Does anyone have experience with (aftermarket) thermostatic control for the Dickinson heater?

    Patrick is right, there is a nice location for sink in the bathroom, over the trailer tongue. We didn’t put one there because the water heater is right below that shelf (accessed from outside.) The counter is still valuable for dressing table, mirror, etc. There are shelves either side. And the kitchen sink is a step away. Less plumbing in tight walls. If a client needed a separate sink in the bathroom, it could go there.

    Toilet Set-ups: Mike, this may not be the super-detailed piece you are looking for, but some thoughts: We built this Tiny House as a spec model. We wanted the toilet to look and feel like what people were used to, so we installed a high quality lo-flush residential toilet. It can easily be changed to something else, depending on the needs of a buyer.

    Standard residential toilet: 1.2 gal flush. Looks familiar. Porcelain. Works like what you are used to. Fine if you are hooked to water. Waste can be run to a septic system, or to a tank. With greywater diverted, a 500 gal. tank on the ground below the unit holds about 400 flushes. A porta-let company will pump a tank like this for under $200.

    RV toilet: uses less water. Plastic, not porcelain. Weird flush mechanism. Looks/feels different. If your water is from an on-board tank, or your waste tank is on-board, then this has advantages over a conventional toilet. Our thinking was that a tiny House like this isn’t intended to move often. For simplicity, we chose a water hook-up over potable water tank, and preferred a septic tank below rather than integrated with the frame and subfloor.

    Composting Toilet: Nice idea. But: the units are much more expensive than a toilet and drain/tank. Takes regular maintenance, rotating bin maybe even daily. If Tiny House is a rental (especially short term rental) this is less feasible. Takes up more space, above and below, than conventional. Plastic toilet, not porcelain. Doesn’t look “normal”.
    I wonder what the advantage is. Some composting toilets use some water for flush, and use electricity for drying, venting… We use some electricity to pump water out of the (recharging) water table, and use some resource to dispose of waste. Ours is relatively trouble-free, and demands almost nothing of me. A composting system is a delicate balance which can go out of kilter – especially with inconsistent use- which requires attention.

    Bucket toilet: Great system! Pee outside. Poop in bucket. Add wood shavings. Empty bucket in dedicated area, cover pile. Simple, inexpensive, (relatively) foolproof. I use bucket toilets elsewhere (in yurts in Maine.) But for the Kingfisher tiny house we wanted a “regular” toilet.

    Thanks, all for you comments. And thank you, Alex, for your great site!
    Dan Neumeyer – JADETinyHouse.com, JADEcraftsmanbuilders.com

    • Jerry March 3, 2014, 11:59 am

      Great work on the Kingfisher! It seems to have just enough to keep the eyes busy without confusing them, nice exterior design! Your interior layout looks open and comfy as well. That bathroom shelf does scream for a sink, one of the above counter bowl type would work without intruding much below the shelf, and it could even be a drainless dump in the shower fill with a pitcher type if you had to avoid the plumbing. Regardless, excellent work on the Kingfisher design and builds I’ve seen photos of!

    • Paul March 4, 2014, 5:07 pm

      Dan, I may be wrong, but the sleeping loft, like most that I have seen, does not have enough vertical space… not wanting to sound crude, but not everybody does the “missionary position” every time. For me, lack of height is a deal breaker…

      • Donatella May 30, 2014, 12:04 pm

        Lol, Paul… ‘get a hotel room, then… ‘ 😉 Or there’s always the great outdoors.

    • Eve May 10, 2015, 2:22 pm

      This house is absolutely fantastic.

      Quick Question:

      Would it be possible to install
      an ‘over-toilet-tank-sink’ (even
      a DIY version) to the bathroom
      — or is the water-supply to the
      toilet too limited to have one?

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ioSKrRGx03o

      http://sinkpositive.com/web/

      Just curious.

  • Lisa January 26, 2014, 1:02 pm

    I’d like to know why I see so many TH’s with propane? If you are on the road, trying to locate a propane dealer is a nuisance. (And I’m not a fan of propane companies; too many bad experiences.)

    Also, why not use solar panels on the roof and a hot water on demand system; what are the pro’s and con’s?

    Have you seen the blurb online about a new company that has some new piece of equipment that collects/converts/makes 99% pure potable water? I believe the idea for it came from dehumidifiers but this would also be a boon since obtaining water can also be a challenge depending upon your situation.

    • Paul March 4, 2014, 5:12 pm

      Why propane? Could it be that connecting to electricity off grid is slightly problematic Lisa? Unless you are seriously considering installing a woodburning stove/oven??? Propane is available in so many places it simply makes sense. Worried about running out of propane? Get 2 (or more) tanks so that you can go fill at your leisure while still having backup tanks supplying your needs. Now… does. that. make. sense. ??

    • Sharon March 16, 2014, 11:56 am

      Lisa I had one of those small propane tanks for my Park model in Florida. I cooked year round and mine lasted 11 months! Most gas stations will fill or trade you tanks! It was $26 a year for my cooking. I did use my crock pot allot but my electric was cheap too!

      • Lisa March 16, 2014, 12:41 pm

        Paul: Actually, I was thinking of powering with solar panels for my electricity and a Gypsy Queenie for wood heat.

        Sharon: Thank you for this post. I didn’t realize you could get propane at gas stations; I’ve never experienced this or ever seen any kind of advertising for this at gas stations. Also, I’m glad to know it’s so inexpensive; I’ll be living on a very restrictive budget. I’ve always found propane to be kind of scary because it is so flammable and volatile. This and the fact that every propane company I’ve ever dealt with have been thoroughly dishonest. I’ll have to rethink propane, I guess. Thanks, again.

    • brandon diehl June 2, 2014, 12:58 pm

      propane is as easy as Wal-mart ,and heat on demand systems cost alot of money,big money,but solar panels would be a plus depending on battery system to charge and store electricity does not become a problem.

  • Katydidit March 3, 2014, 10:29 am

    Love the comments. So great to be able to get the best ideas for different needs! Was wondering about the wall mount twist lights upstairs. Where can you get these and are their any any led options in a similar lamp out there?

    • Sharon March 16, 2014, 12:00 pm

      Katiedidit, I found some very attractive “stained-glass” looking lamps that are battery powered ,even has a remote so you don’t have to get up ! I found them in Home improvement Catalog. the batterys last a long time and you can use the rechargeable kind if you want. It is bright enough to read with and very pretty!

  • Lisa March 16, 2014, 12:32 pm

    The bathroom in this TH is totally wonderful. Love the cozy feeling all of the wood delivers and the “regular home” design of the shower and all that surrounds the commode. Kewl doors, too. 🙂

    For whatever reason, I’m not a fan of gable roofs on the inside. To me, it looks like lost space. I prefer a barrel roof or a gable with wing dormers. I’d rather give up “living room” space downstairs and have a better developed bedroom upstairs (with a flat screen on the wall). I tend to read in bed, watch DVD’s in bed, sleep in bed, so this tight gable roof line inside doesn’t fit my lifestyle. I suppose it’s designed to deal with snow loads in winter, but there are 2-4 months out of the year (depending on where you live) when you aren’t dealing with snow but you are in that sleeping space every night.

  • Susie M June 11, 2014, 9:55 am

    been curious for a long time, but not been able to get an answer as to why no one has under floor heating? The floor is insulated anyway – surely it would be no more weight or space to include pex tubing filled with either water or silicon that could be heated from a solar panel – I’m not talking the electric mats that have to be set in cement, just the tubing attached under the sub floor – clever planning could figure out how to do that before laying the sub floor and marking it so that the tubing was not pierced – that way, not only would the heating costs be eliminated all together, but even more space would be freed up. In addition, the risk of fire, from either a wood stove or a propane heater would also be gone. Is there any one out there who can give some serious thought to the viability of this?

    • Susie M June 11, 2014, 10:05 am

      btw – by no extra weight – I mean no more than a wood or propane stove, and I love the side door above – it totally makes sense to not only get that extra space, but also the more ‘open’ feeling – especially great place for a deck while parked.

  • Greg Burns May 8, 2015, 11:26 am

    As far as different kinds of toilets go? Well, how about that model called “Incinolet”? It literally BURNS the, um, “wastes” into pure ASH, which gets emptied regularly. NO WATER! NO FUMES! NO FUSS! Think you actually place some kind of a wax paper-like ring inside before use. Also believe they can be purchased in either an electric or a (propane?) gas-fired model for convenience. Although they DO co$t quite a bit more than a regular water-flushed toilet, in situations where water is difficult to obtain (via a city pipe or well or a tank…), this would be more “ideal”! Might be worth the “look”! GREAT article and photos! THANKS! Greg

    • Krazeek May 8, 2015, 9:25 pm

      As Kraus said, the Incinolet puts out a lot of smoke and uses a lot of electricity or gas to ‘cook’ the waste. It’s also expensive.

      After reviewing the options, I’ve fallen in love with the Nature’s Head composting toilet. It’s inexpensive, easy to maintain, independent, and there’s no real smell to the process.

      You should always build to your desired specs. Take every option into account and think it through, but the end decision is yours and yours alone.

  • krausdogs May 8, 2015, 3:59 pm

    Greg – Every toileting system has its plus(es) and minus(es). From the reviews I have read online, including from actual owner/users, the Incinolet has several important things that may be a down side for some. They may be ‘fume free’ inside, but step outside the house and, let’s just say, you know when they are burning. They also use quite a bit of electrical power as every ‘load’ can take 1 to 1 & 1/2 hours of cooking to complete. Probably more than you would expect solar power to handle if you are headed in that direction (off grid). And then, as you mention, they are exactly cheap. Just some thoughts.

  • Eve May 10, 2015, 2:15 pm

    This design is fantastic.

    Quick Question:

    Do you think that it be possible to install
    something like a ‘Sink Positive’ (even a
    DIY version) over the toilet-tank — or —
    is the water supply to toilet too-limited?

    http://sinkpositive.com/web/

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ioSKrRGx03o

    .

  • Eve May 10, 2015, 2:16 pm

    .
    This design is fantastic.

    Quick Question:

    Do you think that it be possible to install
    something like a ‘Sink Positive’ (even a
    DIY version) over the toilet-tank — or —
    is the water supply to toilet too-limited?

    http://sinkpositive.com/web/

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ioSKrRGx03o

    .

  • Maggie May 12, 2015, 10:50 pm

    What do you think of the new dry flush toilet?

  • ROSEE January 19, 2017, 4:44 pm

    N-I-C-E!

  • ZACHARY E MOHRMANN January 20, 2017, 6:39 am

    Charming simply charming….!

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