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592 Sq. Ft. Hummingbird Cottage for Retirement

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This is the 592 Sq. Ft. Hummingbird Cottage built for a family’s mother-in-law by Ralph Jones Home Plans, LLC.

Janne Zaccagnino created the plans for the home and normally doesn’t see the finished product, but because she knew the owner she was able to take pictures of the completed home, which she shared with us!

At almost 600 sq. ft., it’s certainly a “small” house rather than tiny, but I think it could make a great retirement cottage. Contact info at the bottom!

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592 Sq. Ft. Hummingbird Tiny Retirement Cottage

Tiny Retirement Cottage

Images via Ralph Jones Home Plans, LLC

With the deck to be added, this looks like a stellar location!

Tiny Retirement Cottage

Here is the floor plan

Tiny Retirement Cottage

Beautiful kitchen. Refrigerator will be installed later.

Tiny Retirement Cottage

I really love the lighting fixtures and bar area.

Tiny Retirement Cottage

A simple induction cooktop with microwave and range.

Tiny Retirement Cottage

Lovely living room with French doors. Love it.

Tiny Retirement Cottage

Another angle. I like the windows above the doors for added light.

Tiny Retirement Cottage

The bedroom has a stunning blue color and great windows.

Tiny Retirement Cottage

Related: Little Lilliwaup Cottage

Bedroom leading into the kitchen.

Tiny Retirement Cottage

Hey! There’s even attic space in this house.

Tiny Retirement Cottage

Luxurious walk-in closet for either pantry storage, clothing or anything!

Tiny Retirement Cottage

Look from the inside!

Tiny Retirement Cottage

Great bathroom with lighting fixture to match the kitchen.

Tiny Retirement Cottage

Spacious walk-in shower with glass shower door.

Tiny Retirement Cottage

Nice shower fixtures! What kind are your favorite?

Tiny Retirement Cottage

Related: 200 Sq. Ft. Zen in Law Tiny House with Murphy Bed in the Loft

We are located in the Memphis area and have been in business since 1964. We’ve designed houses from about 400 sq ft up to about 10,000 sq ft. I, personally have designed several tiny houses on wheels but have yet to witness their construction. My philosophy regarding Tiny Houses is that it’s NOT about the square footage of the unit, but it’s all about the cubic inches!!


  • Contact Ralph Jones Home Plans, LLC at [email protected] or (901) 756-6070
  • Website Under Construction: Ralph Jones Home Plans

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Natalie C. McKee

Natalie C. McKee is a contributor for Tiny House Talk and the Tiny House Newsletter. She's a wife, and mama of three little kids. She and her family are homesteaders with sheep, goats, chickens, ducks and quail on their happy little acre.

Latest posts by Natalie C. McKee (see all)

{ 78 comments… add one }
  • May 2, 2017, 1:34 pm

    This is a very lovely small house. Any idea what the price range is?

    • jannezack
      May 2, 2017, 4:38 pm

      This house cost approximately $45,000 to build (on family property). Some high priced items were used (cabinets and flooring), but otherwise, most of the other things were pretty budget friendly. The builder used 1″ closed cell spray-foam insulation with bats on top of that to create a great seal, provide R14 walls, R32 ceiling (bats only) and used other cost saving items, such as “ventilated shelving” in the closets to keep the price down. The owner intends to build in an entertainment center with shelves and dual use/fold-down table or other items in the niche in the main living area as well as add the deck in the near future. She gets her inspiration from TINY HOUSE TALK! Thanks Alex!

      • May 2, 2017, 6:42 pm

        Great plan, Janne! You are a superstar when it comes to designing tiny houses.

      • Janette Gamble
        May 2, 2017, 7:54 pm

        Approx $45,000 to build — did that include both materials/supplies AND labor costs to build/construct? Or did owners build it themselves?

  • Becky Holm
    May 2, 2017, 1:42 pm

    I love this home. I could live there for ever and ever… the desk/tv area is perfect for my piano! YAY… my dream come true house!

    • jannezack
      May 2, 2017, 5:16 pm

      That’s the perfect spot for a piano (shelves all around for music, if you are anything like me)!

  • Sondra
    May 2, 2017, 4:11 pm

    If I am living in a tiny house for retirement ? I’m having a dishwasher 😉

    • jannezack
      May 2, 2017, 5:20 pm

      LOL!!! That is definitely within the realm of possibility with a unit of this size!

    • Eric
      January 14, 2019, 10:50 pm

      A dishwasher? Why? Won’t you have enough time on your hands if you’re retired? Oh, forgot… golf ; p

      • Suzanne
        May 27, 2019, 5:52 pm

        A dishwasher is far more efficient and economical than hand washing.

  • Mike H
    May 2, 2017, 4:15 pm

    A walk-in closet–what a great addition! I’ve had reservations about most of the tiny/small houses showcased here, but this domicile is really, REALLY nice! It’s well thought-out, and quite well organized as well as very lovely. This , in my estimation, is the best home you’ve featured. Thanks for sharing it with us 😊

    • Natalie C. McKee
      May 3, 2017, 10:22 am

      Thanks for letting us know! I’m glad you love it — go Janne! (the designer)

    • Janne
      May 29, 2022, 7:36 am

      Mike H,
      I’m so pleased you like it. It started off with a 2-car garage on the front (the side with the small porch) and morphed into this due to costs. I love the tiny house movement but most sacrifice something (usually closets). I design these often but they are usually built in another state so I rarely get to see the final product. We have lots of other designs (most have more curb appeal) but every one is designed to the customers wishes. I’d love to help you out if you have time home plan needs!

  • Lori
    May 2, 2017, 4:18 pm

    I’m also curious what it would cost to build this house. Would love to see a ballpark figure. Thanks!

  • Joseph
    May 2, 2017, 4:35 pm

    Love this. It is just the kind of small home that I could live in.

  • lushly
    May 2, 2017, 4:37 pm

    Excellent! As a person who loves clothes, most tiny homes are awful on closet space. This is great!

    • Natalie C. McKee
      May 3, 2017, 10:22 am

      Yea the storage here was wonderful!

  • Kathy Hurley
    May 2, 2017, 4:45 pm

    Absolutely fabulous! I wouldn’t change a thing.

    Thanks for posting!

  • May 2, 2017, 5:31 pm

    Now that’s the only Tiny House I’ve ever seen that I could move right into and call HOME!
    Great job.

    • Natalie C. McKee
      May 3, 2017, 10:20 am

      Wow! Glad you loved it 🙂

  • Kris
    May 2, 2017, 5:36 pm

    I really like it too. I still work full time, but at age 69 , I want something that may be my last home ever. However, looking at it through the eyes of a nurse (me) and an older individual, I would prefer a shower head that also has a handheld shower head with the hose. I’d also love to see one that has an extra bedroom and/or 3- or 4-season screened porch. Yes…I know with those additions it definitely wouldn’t be considered “tiny” or maybe even “small.”

    • JanneZack
      May 2, 2017, 7:06 pm


      The sky is the limit when it comes to “products” (a different type of shower head, or as mentioned in another comment, a dishwasher). As we age, (I’m no spring chicken either) we think about those types of things. They are easily accommodated. The sky is the limit as far as room arrangements and number of bedrooms, the real only limiting factor is your construction budget and location (code requirements, etc.). If you want to talk, my contact information is on page 2 of the Tiny House Talk post.

    • James D.
      May 2, 2017, 7:11 pm

      You could always have the guest room be a one room guest house you can place in your back yard instead of being a direct part of the main house… You can even get creative and make a guest tree house or other creative ways to have guest space that you may even want to use yourself from time to time… Along with a good size back yard and it can be a place to entertain friends and guests without needing a bigger home…

      While, generally, porches and decks aren’t considered part of the house total square footage because they’re not part of the interior space… Besides, one of the reasons to go tiny is to spend more time outdoors… So big porch and back yard are perfectly acceptable options when going tiny or small…

  • Lynn McDonald
    May 2, 2017, 6:00 pm

    Wow! What a lovely home and so well displayed with these pictures. It is so very well-thought out. What a great design and designer. Thank you for sharing what is an ideal solution for a growing population!

    • Natalie C. McKee
      May 3, 2017, 10:19 am

      I am so glad you liked it, Lynn!

  • Rusty
    May 2, 2017, 6:14 pm

    I love this home, everything about it. Wish builders would take an interest in creating small house villages for retired people that would be affordable. I was told by one contractor not enough money can be made. Greed is why there is no affordable housing. Most senior housing caters to the rich.

    • JanneZack
      May 2, 2017, 7:01 pm

      Rusty, You are absolutely correct! Greed is what kills a lot of great ideas. In our area, it’s the TAX BASE (or city government) that rules what can be placed on a lot. If the city can make more money by requiring that you build a 1500 sq. ft. house rather than a 500 sq. ft. one, they make more money for taxes. It is unfortunate.

      HOWEVER, in my city (Memphis) I recently discovered that SOME areas of town where there was, say a $12,000 valued old house that needed to be torn down because of neglect/age, an individual created a PUD (Planned Unit Development) which has different setbacks than typical subdivisions (our typical lot setbacks are 25′ front, 25′ rear and 5′ on each side). If you were to re-sell pieces of a lot to, say, 4 individuals with the requirement for say, a $50k small home to be built on each of 4 PUD lots, the tax base just went from a $12k unit that no one could live in to 4 x $50k units that can be taxed. That is a LOT more tax income for the city. PUDs are often hard to develop, but many cities like them for this reason, the old house, that wasn’t worth much gets torn down and now you have multiple units with a combined value WAY above the former.

      You should look into doing this (Creating a PUD and claiming one of the lots for yourself!

    • Nancy
      July 11, 2019, 6:27 pm

      There are some in WA state, but the builders charge an arm and leg. I’ve told them they are greedy and they rebut stating that it’s supply and demand…greed.

  • Mary Jo
    May 2, 2017, 6:58 pm

    Agree with Rusty, would love to see similar small homes, not tiny, not on wheels, just small AND within a community of small homes.

    • Natalie C. McKee
      May 3, 2017, 10:18 am

      We will keep sharing them as we find them 🙂

  • Karen M
    May 2, 2017, 7:16 pm

    Nice; but, I don’t understand why people do NOT use pocket doors. Much wall space is lost with all of these doors.

    • Alison
      May 2, 2017, 7:52 pm

      I grew up in a house with lots of pocket doors. I like them, but they tend to make noise when they slide, and they don’t seal as well as most swing doors. But they are definitely space savers and a great idea in many situations.

      • Wiz Zard
        January 14, 2019, 7:48 pm

        One reason “we” dont have as many pocket doors as we could is experience: the darn things seem to jam, jump tracks, etc and it is an absolute nightmare to get them fixed. If I had walls that opened up to fix ’em, I would certainly use more, lol!

  • Nanny M
    May 2, 2017, 7:31 pm

    This is totally cute!

  • Karen M
    May 2, 2017, 7:46 pm

    JanneZack, I grew up in Memphis. Where are these being built there? Also James, I plan to have a huge backyard with nanawall opening up into the backyard …no front door..with attached oversized one car garage at the front of the house. Mine will be around 640sq ft, but I will also put a mexican kitchen in the backyard, & later a small small bedroom and small plunge pool. I am so excited. Just have to find me a small lot now.

    • James D.
      May 3, 2017, 12:55 am

      Yeah, NanaWalls has a great range of products from Bifold doors to Folding Glass doors. I like that they offer options for high durability and can be used in extreme weather environments…

      I’d go for their kitchen transition system, so the kitchen can become part of the outdoor area…

  • katiei
    May 2, 2017, 8:31 pm

    A retirement home should be handicap accessible. Wider halls and doorways in case one may need a w/c, maybe post surgery or fall. A shower without a lip is essential- either roll in or not have to step over. Grab bars and elevated outlets to name a few more. Way easier to add /w the build. The roll under bar in the kitchen is great.

    • Natalie C. McKee
      May 3, 2017, 10:15 am

      Good points! The designer has tons of homes and I’m sure she’d be willing to adjust it to your needs.

  • Sherry
    May 2, 2017, 10:13 pm

    Love this adorable little cottage….perfect for retirees…..with one exception……need a mudroom entry space for Mn. winters! I found when I put an air-lock entry on my home it saved me over one hundred dollars in the first winter.

    • Natalie C. McKee
      May 3, 2017, 10:11 am

      Mud rooms are awesome, for sure!

  • Patty
    May 3, 2017, 2:47 am

    Really do like this. Very nice for retirement, or for anyone.

    • Natalie C. McKee
      May 3, 2017, 10:04 am

      I could certainly live here, that’s for sure.

  • Cris Y-D
    May 3, 2017, 5:06 pm

    I LOVE THIS!!! I am moving from a two bedroom apt to a one bdrm apt in a Community Home. It will be a relief, because the rent will be only 1/3 of my SS check, instead of nearly all of it. The apt I’m moving into will be 600 sq ft, and is laid out similar to this cottage. I wish I could move into the cottage. It’s adorable!

    • Natalie C. McKee
      May 4, 2017, 4:14 am

      Oh I’m so glad you are moving to a great place!

  • Jolene Cardwell
    May 4, 2017, 12:14 pm

    I love love this. Is the cost of this really only around $45,000. I would totally retire in this home. Can I get more information.

    • Natalie C. McKee
      May 5, 2017, 5:35 am

      Hi Jolene — You can contact the designer (who sells the plans) with the email address on page 2 under the pictures 🙂 Her name is Janne.

  • Donna Rae
    May 5, 2017, 11:16 am

    A really fun little cottage! My only complaint is that the Street View is very unappealing. I would flip the kitchen to the corner where the front door is and put the front door in the middle of the Street View with a larger dormer above it and a larger porch. Add a couple of windows and it would be adorable!

    • Matt
      July 22, 2018, 8:33 pm

      I’m assuming, the front of the house probably faces an back-alley, so that probably why it’s minimalistic. And with that assumption the back of the house probably faces the main house on the lot… so that probably explains the way it was designed.

  • Donna Rae
    May 5, 2017, 11:25 am

    In my previous comment, I forgot to thank Tiny House for showing homes that are a little larger than the traditional “tiny” abode. There are many of us that want to drastically downsize but need it to be larger than the really tiny houses on wheels. In addition to the changes I mentioned previously, I would put full cabinets in the kitchen peninsula instead of having it open. We can all use more storage! 😉

    • Natalie C. McKee
      May 8, 2017, 6:49 am

      So glad you like this variety, Donna! 🙂 We know “tiny” looks different for everyone. What’s important is that you are downsizing and living with what you need 🙂

  • Sherry
    May 11, 2017, 4:45 pm

    Love this adorable little cottage. This would be perfect for a retired person such as myself. I really like that it gives you enough open space so you don’t feel crowded or that you can’t decorate it with anything but a bed. The closet space looks wonderful as well. Very well thought out.

    • Natalie C. McKee
      May 12, 2017, 9:40 am

      I’m glad you like it! It is definitely a great idea 🙂

  • Anna zaccarelli
    June 29, 2017, 9:52 am

    Love it looking to build here on the gulf coast in ala cottage about 600 square

    July 3, 2017, 11:09 pm

    Not a big fan of the tiny houses but this small home really hit the spot for me. I am retired and this would be just perfect. Been looking for just one story, NO STAIRS OR STEPS, it’s priced nicely and great use of the space. I’m not surprised that a woman designed this. (no offense guys)

  • Sandi mitchell
    July 12, 2017, 9:58 am

    Retiring very soon and hoping to build a cozy cottage/mini mansion/small house behind my daughter and son in law’s 1892 house they are restoring in Columbia, Tennessee. The price point of this house and the size is perfect! Would definitely like to keep it under 900square ft. for sure. I would be interested in adding a single car garage, a small art studio/bunk room (for my creative urges and my grandchildren sleepovers) and a screened in back porch (bugs are ravenous in Tennessee). I didn’t see if that price was including cost of construction or not?

  • Marcia Czech
    July 22, 2018, 9:25 pm

    I will be moving to the Myrtle Beach area in the near future. Would you know of builders in that area that would build these beautiful tiny homes? Thanks!

  • Mike Smith
    July 23, 2018, 7:21 am

    Unfortunately our HOA does not allow building a separate small house on the same lot even though it has multi-acre lots. The rule was made from the concern they might be rented out, another no no. A number of residents have wanted to build such houses for parents so they could live there inexpensively. Frankly, I believe a number of the HOA rules are stupidly restrictive and may even be illegal but cannot be changed except every 10 years.

    • Alex
      July 24, 2018, 11:09 am

      That sounds really frustrating. I wonder if you can ask about Accessory Dwelling Units which this may qualify under. It sounds surprising to me that with that much land that there are restrictions like that.

  • Marsha Cowan
    July 23, 2018, 11:04 am

    So Sweet! Really lovely little home, but a little too dark for me. Maybe a couple of skylights over the kitchen and bath? Otherwise, really nice.

  • Karen Blackburn
    July 23, 2018, 3:00 pm

    With a bedroom area roughly 21’x 12′ it would be easy to redesign slightly and make the space into 2 bedroom’s (complete with clothes storage space)and a bathroom moved slightly into the living area. Having lived in a house with a huge bedroom of 12′ x 13′ including large built in wardrobe and space for a king size bed if wanted it is achievable in this house. My big gripe would be the kitchen. I would want a walk in pantry, the closet shown in the photos as a possible pantry appears to be no where near the kitchen and suitable for a country estate in size, running off the kitchen itself plus a proper stove, ie at least 3 hobs and room to cook a roast at the weekend though no need for a microwave. Nice size and obviously what the new occupant wants so am hoping she will he very happy in it. Given it is a decent size and shape it would be easy for others to move things around to their satisfaction without needing to expand. Great design.

  • judith dale greer
    August 14, 2018, 6:54 pm

    wonder how this hummingbird would do in florida. what kind of foundation does it require and how sturdy would it be in a hurricane?

  • Deborah Pugh
    November 16, 2018, 12:21 pm

    This doesn’t seem like an efficient use of space to me. It’s beautiful, I’ll give you that. No window in the kitchen would be a deal breaker for me, no the door doesn’t make up for it. Also, you couldn’t find room for a half bath? Beautiful, but not functional for me.

    • Alex
      November 16, 2018, 1:42 pm

      Good points, Deborah, thanks for the feedback! I agree with the kitchen window, gotta have that! Especially when doing the dishes, hehe.

  • Angela
    January 15, 2019, 3:55 am

    Mostly beautiful and perfect. I saw the note where the refrigerator is coming, but I would also need a regular oven and cooktop. That shelf for the microwave is nice. I would want a dishwasher, too. I guess that walk-in closet could contain a stackable washer-dryer or one of those combo washer/dryers. No one has mentioned this, and it would add quite a bit to the cost, but instead of that big enclosed shower, how about a walk-in bathtub, with a hand-held shower wand? I would love one of those, and with so many tinies going so high-end, I am surprised to see no “granny pads” with a walk-in tub. As for no extra bedroom for guests, I would have a convertible sofa for them to sleep on. After all, for just a temporary visit, an entire extra room is not necessary.

  • Maria
    January 15, 2019, 7:39 am

    Love this house. But the problem is where you can build it. There are zoning laws that do not let you build anything under 750 square feet. So finding a place to build where I live would be hard.

    • Cassandra J Worley
      August 11, 2022, 5:04 pm

      Can you get your own builder? I really like it.

      • James D.
        August 15, 2022, 11:59 am

        Yes, that’s generally the idea when they offer to sell you the plans so you can either build it yourself or hire your own builder.

  • Kay Webster
    April 6, 2019, 4:25 pm

    This small home might be designed for a grandparent in their sixties.
    But do have two thoughts about making a home for the latter years.
    1. If the peninsular in the kitchen was at table height rather than bench height, it would mean that the kitchen could be used from seated – rather than standing.
    A person doesn’t need to be in a wheelchair to find standing to make dinner exhausting.
    2. The plans describe “roll in shower” – I was expecting a flat floor – invaded flexibility for showering when mobility decreased. Also, would expand the space avaialble when transferring to the toilet become difficult.

    And a person choice – I would prefer the toilet/bathroom accessible without entering the bedroom – and a slight movement in doors would solve this.
    Having said that – love love love.

  • Susan
    May 27, 2019, 1:43 pm

    I love this! I wish they could be built “anywhere USA”, on a foundation. Sadly, there are too many local restrictions. My fantasy is to buy a small lot and just build a small home near one of my kids, without having to worry about special ordinances.

  • Nancy
    July 11, 2019, 6:28 pm

    I LOVE IT! With a few more extras, it would be perfect for me!

  • Candy Meadows
    July 21, 2019, 5:49 am

    Keep up the good work. Love this little house and all the feedback from other older people. Things I haven’t considered. Need all the help I can get.

  • Donna Rae
    January 16, 2020, 4:24 pm

    Very cute! I would like more cabinets in the kitchen, though, so if the entry door was moved over to where the refrigerator is on the floor plan, you could put cabinets on the wall opposite where the kitchen is. Put the refrigerator over there. It’s all small so it would only add a few steps but think of all the storage and counter space you could add! The blue in the bedroom is pretty. Livable the way it is shown but could be just a little bit better. And doesn’t everyone see how they would customize it? That’s the fun part!

  • Donna Rae
    January 16, 2020, 6:17 pm

    Forgot to mention that I would not leave all that space under that kitchen countertop. Put a narrow cabinet under there so you can still have leg room for stools but you get some additional storage, too. Just sayin’.

  • Mike
    March 14, 2020, 12:41 am

    Can I purchase a set of plans for constructing this cottage here in Missouri? If I can how much?

  • Deb
    November 7, 2020, 11:05 pm

    Love the size of this retirement home.
    Is the shower a molded unit.
    Would be great to have real tile
    But I understand you wanting to keep the price

    • Natalie C. McKee
      November 9, 2020, 1:59 pm

      I’m sure you could choose tile if you’d prefer it. I do think it’s usually a price thing.

  • Keith Lowman
    February 21, 2021, 7:53 pm

    I would like to get pricing on this design.


    • Natalie C. McKee
      February 22, 2021, 8:13 am

      Hi Keith, you can contact the plan creator here >> Contact Ralph Jones Home Plans, LLC at [email protected] or (901) 756-6070

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