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960 Sq. Ft. Floating Cottage in Portage Bay

This beautiful home is a part of a floating house community in Seattle called Portage Bay. The design is inspired by the American Craftsman style of architecture and is one of eight homes that shares a dock and some land reserved for parking.

Entering this 960 square foot home, you will pass through the foyer, the kitchen, and the dining area to get to the living room. With its many windows offering views of the water, the living room looks and feels open. The living room also has vaulted ceilings and a fireplace. If you wish to enjoy the outdoors, you can exit the house through sliding patio doors to access the lower level deck.

This house has two bedrooms—a master bedroom suite upstairs which has its own roof deck. The second bedroom is on the lower level, near the living room. It can also be used as a study or a home office. Both rooms have their own attached bathrooms.

960 Sq. Ft. Floating Cottage in Portage Bay


Images © Coldwell Banker via Small House Bliss

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Images © Coldwell Banker via Small House Bliss

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Sabrena is a writer and blogger from Los Angeles, California and Tiny House Talk is excited to have her as part of the team to help us share more inspiring tiny homes and simple living stories with you.
{ 70 comments… add one }
    July 1, 2015, 11:10 am

    Home? more a McMansion by my thinking….it sure is beautiful though.

    • May 6, 2016, 5:00 pm

      I actually owned this floating home with my partner. It was built by Eric Hogeboom. He is a master at fitting lots into small spaces. When we bought it, it was a one story 525 sq ft bachelor pad. We had it gutted and a 2nd story put on. We had it painted turquoise, but the subsequent owners painted it grey. It floats on old growth cedar logs and under that, 50 gallon plastic drums with air pumped in them, each one providing ~ 450 lbs of lift, in an upside down triangular configuration. Eric managed to fit 2 bedrooms and 2 baths in this floating home, and 2 decks, both of which took advantage of the stunning view through the Montlake cut. It’s connected to the city sewer system. As for floor plans, we dropped some serious $$ to have Eric create them (he’s and architect and builder). You might google him to see if he’d be willing to share or sell them. We paid $365,000 for the original, and $165,000 for the gutting and 2nd story. We sold 2 houses to buy and remodel this one. Seattle is outrageously expensive to live in and it’s Amazon, Google, Facebook and Microsoft employees who can afford them now. They used to be pretty ramshackle and considered “bohemian.” Not so anymore!

      • Dominick Bundy
        July 2, 2016, 10:29 am

        As nice and beautiful as this floating home is.. I’d still go for the ramshackle and “bohemian” kind first.. (not the junky dirty or disorganize type) To me they offer a lot more character.

      • maureen Langhaar
        December 29, 2017, 7:52 pm

        haha!! try living on the eastern end of long island,,,what use to be beach cottages are now 3/4 million dollar summer homes!! I know what u are speaking of..by the way, your home is just perfect. peace

        • Eric
          January 6, 2018, 10:47 pm

          What? ONLY 3/4 million bucks? Hell here in NZ the average price across the country is about $550k. Go to the expensive places like Auckland or Queenstown and you are talking in the region of$1.5 million.

          You don’t know how lucky you are.

  • Andrea Hardy
    July 1, 2015, 11:43 am

    wow! sure is a BEAUTY

    WOW, sure is a beauty!

  • Rue
    July 1, 2015, 2:40 pm

    Not exactly tiny – amazing that homes this size can float!

    A lovely moderately-sized home, though. Probably expensive, but nice, and not TOO big.

  • Ben
    July 1, 2015, 2:46 pm

    The Tom Hanks house in Sleepless in Seattle . . . . . . .

  • Jules Jones
    July 1, 2015, 2:56 pm

    Now, THAT is what I call STANDARD of living. Inspiring, dreamy, a writer’s muse, bold, sexy and audacious.

    • Eric
      February 18, 2016, 4:01 am

      What? A house? Sexy? Not sure what to actually make of that statement of yours but houses, floating or not, are not sexy. People yes. Houses Nevuh!

      • Jules
        February 25, 2016, 12:05 pm

        Of course, sexy!! If the room, or the space, exudes romance and coziness, and inspires you to want to make love in every space, THAT is sexy!

        • Eric
          July 2, 2016, 4:54 am

          The only thing that exudes romance and coziness etc. is Your Mind. Inanimate objects by their very nature cannot.

      • Jules
        October 28, 2016, 4:38 pm

        And THEREFORE, as I stated before, it’s SEXY. Very very sexy. So sexy that I get wet, and not because of the water that surrounds the tiny house. Bahahahahahaha!!!! You, dear Eric, need a drink…or something else wet.

        • Natalie
          October 31, 2016, 10:12 am

          I feel like I should moderate this comment, but it just made me laugh 🙂 — Tiny House Talk Team

  • Ray
    July 1, 2015, 2:57 pm

    Any plans available.. I love it,

    • Meg
      July 2, 2015, 12:19 am

      I love it, too. Are there floor plans? I isn’t tiny, but it is ‘small’ — where is the second bedroom?

    • Rhonda Wilson
      July 2, 2015, 8:52 pm

      Meg – as to the location of the second bedroom, from the pictures it appears to be located directly behind the Foyer and Kitchen…the sink wall of the downstairs bath is the “unwindowed” (left) side of the very first photo. The stairs are probably directly over the toilet. The entry to the bedroom seems to be at the end of the stained glass window – left of the sofa.

  • Jules Jones
    July 1, 2015, 3:02 pm

    SUGGESTION ALERT: And by the way, if the tiny home or cottage or houseboat or cabin is for sale, please be sure to list the price and contact info, or a link to same. And EVEN IF the property is NOT for sale, a general cost summary would be awesome to give readers something to chew on budget-wise. I want to be able to ask myself, “Is that within reach?” Thank ya!!

  • d
    July 1, 2015, 3:20 pm

    It’s beautiful. But way too big! and would most likely require a mortgage for most people, who are looking for something mortgage free and debt free.. Also the more space , the bigger the cost with maintenance and utility bills. as well as taxes etc..

    • Angela
      August 28, 2015, 5:51 pm

      To me, any house under 1,000 ft is worth looking at, because we are looking to build “small” for a family of four, that home schools, and plans to grow. A TINY house won’t work for us. We are obviously not going to be able to afford a house like this, but I love the floor plan ideas, because they help us decide what we are going to do. The tiny house movement is not exactly the same for everyone, but that definitely doesn’t make this a McMansion.

      • Eric
        July 2, 2016, 4:58 am

        …but in India (and a host of other countries) this would be akin to a mansion rather than a McMansion.

  • David Remus
    July 1, 2015, 3:48 pm

    Beautiful home, Beautiful place.

    Location, location, location…….

    • Eric
      July 2, 2016, 4:59 am

      Seattle, Seattle, Seattle… ‘nuf said eh?

  • Julie Carson
    July 1, 2015, 4:23 pm

    This is really beautifully put together, but the Tiny House movement was designed to provide comfortable ,efficient, affordable housing opportunities for the vast segment of Society that could no longer afford the housing market.
    Put this in a design magazine to show what a big budget can do for a smaller space this really has nothing to do with the Tiny House movements original goal.

    • Deb
      July 1, 2015, 10:21 pm

      I agree. It’s gorgeous but isn’t on the radar for tiny house and affordability.

  • Cahow
    July 1, 2015, 8:55 pm


    “Revenge of the Oriental Rug in the Kitchen!” *snap*

    • Lynnette
      July 2, 2015, 2:26 am

      Bahahaha! !!! You and your rugs Cahow lololol I do like the tub…but way too big of a home. It is quite beautiful though….

    • Cahow
      July 2, 2015, 7:08 am

      Good Merry Morning, Lynnette. 😀

      Yes, yes…me and my rugs. LOL Well, it’s Cheap Fun for me and if I can get a snicker or two when I see them in other homes, ESPECIALLY in the ~gasp~ KITCHEN, then it puts me in a jolly mood.

      (For those unaware, there was quite a debate about “Germ Soup” and Oriental rugs in a thread, long-long ago.) 😀

      Have a wonder-filled 4th of July, Lynnette!

    • Michael L
      July 1, 2016, 11:14 pm

      Gotta love those rugs! In my last house, every room had an oriental rug, including the kitchen and bathroom!

  • Ford
    July 1, 2015, 9:29 pm

    The house was for sale for $825,000.00 and in Seattle for that location, sorry to say folks, but that is very competitively priced.

    • Dominick Bundy
      August 28, 2015, 7:57 pm

      If that is so competitively priced.. Who are the kind of people who can afford such a outrage price? What kind of jobs would they have to have to support such a place? Definitely not the majority I’d assume…

      • Eric
        February 18, 2016, 4:06 am

        “Who are the kind of people who can afford such a outrage price?”

        Well you might like to think about those massively overpaid workers at Redmond to start with. You know, those techie people at Mickeysoft!

  • Comet
    July 1, 2015, 10:19 pm

    Not to be a Debbie Downer but don’t forget to add in dockage (slip) fees; waste disposal fees; fresh water fees; shore power fees; parking fees and ANY repair or maintenance is probably double or more what you pay on land—I love the idea but the price is probably well out of reach of most of us.


  • Karyn
    July 2, 2015, 9:05 am

    This home is certainly beautiful, but 960 SF is now considered “tiny?” I guess we’ve become accustomed to the “required” 3,000 SF for two people!

    • Alex
      July 2, 2015, 10:29 am

      It’s not considered tiny, Karyn, we have a small houses section here too, tiny *and* small houses are featured here 🙂

      • Tiana
        August 28, 2015, 11:30 pm

        And as someone up thread mentioned, for a family of 4-6 this would be “tiny”.

      • Lara
        July 1, 2017, 8:04 pm

        Thanks so much for including “Small Houses”. I love looking at ALL of them — and at least where I live, under 1,000 is still very much a paradigm shift !!

        I am looking at all sorts of options and really appreciate your site and the vast array of options, smaller homes included !!

        THANK YOU !!

  • Trish
    July 2, 2015, 10:40 am

    I agree with all the comments above about the cost and size of this “tiny house.” If you have the money and can afford this beautiful home and its upkeep, more power to you. For most of us though, this is definitely out of reach and unrealistic.

    • Eric
      July 2, 2016, 5:02 am

      Still, you can dream though can’t you? Last time I looked dreams were still free. But with technology moving the way it is it might not be for much longer… (packing a sad) : (

  • Bev
    July 3, 2015, 1:49 am

    What a gorgeous endeavor. I want one of these to tour the lake. 🙂 Please!

    • Eric
      July 2, 2016, 5:04 am

      Bev, houseboats such as these are not designed for touring in. They are designed to be docked (in a bay?) and only moved by a tow boat to a new mooring, if ever.

  • Robyn
    July 3, 2015, 1:04 pm

    would love to have the plans for this house!

  • Brenda
    July 5, 2015, 8:54 am

    Would love to see floor plans of this home. Building a house on a peninsula, want to capture all the views I can.
    Any idea where to get plans?

  • SusAnne
    July 7, 2015, 2:44 am

    The price leaves me in shock…part of me says “glad I saw it anyway” and the other part of me says “it’s not reasonably affordable, delete !” 🙁

    • Dominick Bundy
      August 28, 2015, 7:52 pm

      I agree, almost one million dollars for a place like that and that size.. Come on now.. What kind of jobs do people have , that could afford a place like that? It’s all insanity how realstate has been over the last 2 decades.. Most people who do buy into that price range , become slaves to mortgagees again, and start right back where they were trying to escape from..

      • Eric
        July 2, 2016, 5:08 am

        “What kind of jobs do people have , that could afford a place like that?

        Try the likes of Mickeysoft, Garrgle etc. THEY have jobs so that people can afford places like that. Obscene? Sure is. Reality? Unfortunately ’tis so. So many have fallen into the trap of the more I have the more successful and happy my life will be. Reality is they are slaves to the rat race and have a significantly higher risk of dying from heart disease or similar at much younger ages.

        • Dominick Bundy
          July 2, 2016, 10:42 am

          Thenn it should be hight time for people to get re educated if they think the more one has equals their status and elevates twhat they consider success to them is about.. It is insane..There a billionare out there who own many well maintsained mansion scattered all over the world and has never spent one night in any of themm.. That’s utterly insane.. Instead of pissing away money on such a large foot print. Why not put a cap on the grossley over paid wages and net worth some of these people get and like the remainder tricked down to the $15 hf + for the minimal wage earning and stop squaling about it.. Yes I am a die hard socialist and No I’m not nor ever will be communist, there is a big difference. (but not to those who won’t try to learn the differences)

  • Sakka Lorraine
    August 28, 2015, 7:36 pm

    Anyone tell me what is the definition of tiny homes vs small homes?
    I live in Japan and am currently thinking about getting a mobile home (doesn’t have the low-income mentality here and it is slowly becoming popular for older people) and am also contemplating building one that is probably around 500-600 square feet one-bedroom if I get property. I like the idea of smallness and decluttering which for me is my first goal (living and keeping things in Japan for close to 20years).

  • Nanny M
    August 29, 2015, 4:00 am

    Wow. Breathtaking. I didn’t realize tiny houses were only meant to be affordable. I thought they demonstrated smaller ways of living. Seattle has almost countless huge corporations like Microsoft, Amazon, and Boeing, but of course not everyone can afford such a price as this. I still love seeing good ideas, even when they may not be affordable for myself. Thank you, Alex.

  • Kelly Libert
    August 29, 2015, 8:26 am

    I love that deck off of the master bedroom. I would keep a coffee maker up there and start my day on it. No matter the size or the price, there are still aspects of the design that can be translated in a tiny house. I can’t afford any of the homes in Dwell magazine, either, but I have used some of the ideas found there in my home. And I absolutely would use an Oriental rug in the kitchen. I have a runner there now. It prevents spills from damaging the floor and can be easily washed in a commercial machine found in many laundromats.

  • Glema
    August 29, 2015, 9:50 pm

    Thank you for sharing this home with us Alex. I love the house boat. It’s quite lovely. I would place some of those cushy rubber mats under the oriental hall runner type rug they have there in the kitchen so it is comfy and pretty 🙂 Thank you for sharing your home with us to those who own it. God bless you all, I would love to have a THOW that converts to a houseboat. You have one story like that I know of Alex.

  • Brian K
    February 26, 2016, 6:26 pm

    Love the house, lots of windows means lots of light.
    Would love to see the floor plan.

  • Lisa E.
    February 26, 2016, 10:29 pm

    Wow. I bet the slip/docking fees would rip your head off! You’d have to park this beauty three miles off shore just to make it cost effective.

    • Eric
      July 2, 2016, 5:12 am

      cough, cough, you attach these to docks which are themselves attached to the shore. Can you imagine one of these sitting out in the middle of a lake, or worse in the ocean during inclement weather?

  • Patricia
    February 26, 2016, 10:50 pm

    I just really like this house. It is open and airy with a beautiful kitchen and entertaining area. The bedroom upstairs could be problematic, but it’s such a wonderful space up there, I would make it work. The only thing I would change would be to move it off the water and into the woods with a view of the water from the decks. My husband is terrified of the water, so it would have to be some distance from it. Besides, that would bring down the cost.

  • Joyce Davenport
    February 27, 2016, 12:18 am

    I thought “Sleepless in Seattle ” immediately also. Loved it then and now. Is it truly?

    • Eric
      July 2, 2016, 5:13 am

      If you had to pay a mortgage on that then I guess it would be sleepless in Seattle.

      • Lisa E.
        July 1, 2017, 6:52 pm

        LOL, Eric!!! 😀

  • February 27, 2016, 1:32 am

    If I did not have the farm, I would like to buy a used barge and build a house and garden on it so that I could cruse the Salish Sea.

  • David Remus
    July 1, 2016, 12:20 pm

    Beautiful home in a beautiful place, no question. I’d pack and move there if I could afford it, maybe.

    I think of the Tiny Home idea as one of reducing your footprint both physically and economically, building at a reasonable price. The price here could quite probably buy ten Tiny Homes as imagined by most of the readers here.

  • Dick
    July 1, 2016, 3:42 pm

    I agree that a) this is a beautiful home (even with the rug in the kitchen, Cahow! lol), and I’d bet the same type home could be easily built on a foundation.

    But I do have one question: storms. Although I live in the landlocked midwest, I grew up on the east coast and remember the 1962 nor’easter that ravaged the Delaware and Maryland Eastern Shore beaches. I know they’re not nor’easters on the Pacific coast, but how would a floating house like that stand up to such a storm?

  • poof
    July 1, 2016, 5:06 pm

    Obviously “tiny” isn’t in your vocabulary, or perhaps the defination eludes you. It is beautiful. It is expensively dressed it is not TINY.

  • Lisa E.
    July 2, 2016, 7:42 am

    I don’t think I would want to live in this houseboat even if I could afford it. Out of just about every window, all you see is other houses or the side of another house. As far as I am concerned, this is just another housing development with buildings jammed in together for profit. Frankly, I’d rather be looking at sail boats at anchor. Whatever esthetic benefit might be gained by living on the water is lost to an overdeveloped profit motive. And another thing: Fukushima is being reported as still leaking and I read a couple of years ago that this radioactive leakage had already reached our Pacific shoreline. No thanks. It’s a THOW for me!

  • Jonell
    August 6, 2016, 12:09 pm

    I keep coming back to look at this one as it embodies everything I dream of in a house. And for those who complain that this isn’t a tiny house, no it isn’t but when one gets much older you need a little more space to maneuver around. I can’t climb those ladders to get into a bedroom area that I can’t stand up in any more. So I appreciate seeing “small” houses even though I look at the design elements of the tiny houses for ideas that one can use. As for the price of this one? That is what one would have to pay to live in Seattle. There are many “bedroom” communities around Seattle but it is similar in cost to living right in San Francisco which by the way are in the millions. But it most likely includes the slip in the cost.

  • Jules
    November 1, 2016, 9:51 am

    LOL!!!! Natalie, you made me laugh too. Thanks for seeing the humor in my play with words.

  • Pam
    October 6, 2017, 4:30 pm

    I absolutely LOVE this! I really could see myself very happy here. Maybe when I win the lottery?!

  • BJ
    October 15, 2017, 3:09 am

    This place is nice. But its just as big as my townhouse. Not so tiny.

  • Angela
    December 30, 2017, 5:42 am

    Tiny house? Yeah, so is Mar-a-Lago

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