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McMansion Killer: The E.D.G.E. 518 Sq. Ft. Family Cabin

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The E.D.G.E. cabin, designed by Revelations Architects/Builders is 518 sq. ft. but suitable for a small family to live in.

E.D.G.E. stands for Experimental Dwelling for a Greener Environment. It’s a prefab small cabin with kitchen, bathroom, multi-functional living/sleeping area, and two sleeping lofts.

It’s also designed to collect rain-water. The cabin has large insulated sliding doors outside that you can use for solar heat during the day and close up at night to help keep the structure warm.

E.D.G.E. 518 Sq. Ft. Cabin: A McMansion Killer?


Images © Dan Hoffman Photography

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Images © Dan Hoffman Photography

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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!

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{ 39 comments… add one }
  • cookie
    October 24, 2014, 12:12 pm

    Such a beautiful home. Could definitely see myself living there and having room for other family and grandchildren to visit. Very sensible design.

  • Heidi
    October 24, 2014, 12:46 pm

    I like all the openness, but there is nothing comfy about it at all. I could not see myself living there.

    • Hawk
      October 27, 2016, 10:50 am

      I agree! Although it does look cool; the only place of any “relaxation” is in the beds! Where is the comfort in the main level? No chairs, etc; only wood! So to the people commenting negative things in response to this Heidi’s comment – reality time is in order! as well as mirror time for being rude!

    • Cate
      August 18, 2017, 11:38 am

      Me neither.

  • Jeremy
    October 24, 2014, 1:20 pm

    Love the idea. Would I make some changes? Sure. But this is a great starting point.

  • Krit
    October 24, 2014, 1:20 pm

    I love this! I think that it is very livable! You can make any room, or living space comfy, by filling it with things you like. I’m sorry, but I do not agree with the people saying this is not a livable design. Add a recliner! Lol! All Kidding aside… This container has sleeping for six, comfortably, a huge bathroom and unobstructed views of its surroundings all done with a very small footprint, and with green living in mind. I know I couldn’t do better… Could you? If so, I’d love to see your designs.

    • Marlene
      January 2, 2015, 3:37 pm

      I agree, great design. I wish they had the cost to build.

  • Lisa E.
    October 24, 2014, 1:26 pm

    Nicely done. I just would add solar panels all over the roof, though. Totally love the sliding doors that offer storm doors, privacy and security. Very nice.

  • Chris Hutcheson
    October 24, 2014, 3:52 pm

    I like it. Could easily live in it, and clutter it up in no time. I’m glad for the steps vs. ladders.

    • Mike
      October 26, 2016, 4:48 pm

      Amen to that, Chris! I, for one, ALWAYS applaud a loft with steps instead of a ladder–I’m just not athletic enough (any more, if ever!)to easily climb up and down a ladder, especially in the middle of the night.

  • Brian
    October 24, 2014, 4:26 pm

    Lots of thought went into this TH. Works beautifully with great design thinking. I could live in this one. Thanks for sharing. Cheers from Australia

  • Doris
    October 24, 2014, 5:44 pm

    Wow! Zen and Scandinavian in one place. Love the open feeling of this house. Perfect for a woodsy site. It’s always difficult to figure out where to place non-window rooms when you have great views in every direction. The ability to close up the place in the event of a hurricane or storm is great, while enjoying it the other 98% of the year. It would be easy to customize the furniture to be more comfort-oriented, and still provide that all important downstairs bed option for us oldsters (has no one heard of cushions?)
    Aesthetics aside, during the rainy season here in the south, with large rivers easily zooming up to flood stage in no time, I think that design would put too much strain/pressure on the small system shown. I would want a walk-out balcony at that location (without the inverted roof) instead of the water collection system, but to each her own.
    Overall, very clean and neat, and perfect for a rural setting.

  • Glen
    October 25, 2014, 7:30 pm

    I love this place!. It looks great inside and out, has a well thought out and liveable interior, harvests rainwater and also offers the benefits of passive solar.
    This is not just a standout small house, it is a house of the future.

  • sheila hurley
    October 27, 2014, 8:28 pm

    Absolutely beautiful. One of the most thoughtfully designed and beautiful small homes I’ve seen…. don’t listen to the whiners, this is style. How much???? 🙂

    • Cate
      August 18, 2017, 11:40 am

      Style? Do you want to go out in 40 degrees below zero so you can close the light out? That is a stupid design.

    • Beth
      August 18, 2017, 4:42 pm

      I agree! Insulated curtains would be useful in both summer and winter. Even vertical blinds would suffice for blocking sun/privacy. It is beautifully designed, and there are many options that could be used if someone decided that they needed a solution for the above.

  • rktrix
    October 28, 2014, 7:38 pm

    Where are the bed cushions kept during daytime hours? This is very thoughtful, very clean.

    Were it mine, I would need a little comfort, though… Everything is very stiff and hard. After a day of skiing, I myself am one mass of aching muscles. No need to make it worse.

  • Catherine Wilson
    October 28, 2014, 10:19 pm

    I love the simplicity and clean lines of the design.
    I also love the patio doors and large windows, but…..
    I estimate their surface area at about 33% of the buildings perimeter; that’s too much for an area that gets winter. Lot’s of heat loss thru those glass panes.
    On top of that they look like single, not double thermal doors. Do they heat the roof in winter to get that water catchment?

  • Karen
    November 6, 2014, 11:56 am

    Beautiful. Could be “warmed” with a little color or cosier furniture, but that is up to individual taste. I would have an additional half bath rather than only one large one.

  • Deadrock
    December 8, 2015, 11:34 am

    Sadly, no specs or prices on the website. It’s basically just a portfolio, with very little information. All questions require a call to the company.

    I love the basic design, however. If you’re not interested in the water catchment system, I wonder if the area where the water is meant to be stored could be converted to a closet off the loft bedroom that’s right next to it? That would give me a bedroom, clothes closet, and the other loft to use as a home office…assuming the lofts are tall enough to stand in, which I’m not sure about. They look like it, but photos can be misleading. Aside from room for books (which might be do-able, given some creative planning), that’s all I’d need to be happy. Well, maybe a tub. But don’t need a big kitchen, and with some comfy furniture and some personal touches, this could be very nice.

  • Karen Rogers
    October 26, 2016, 5:25 pm

    Perfect if only there were a master bath.

    • Natalie
      October 27, 2016, 8:40 am

      That’d be nice! — Tiny House Talk Team

  • Gigi
    October 26, 2016, 6:30 pm

    There’s a lot to like here. Customizing with color and furnishings would be easy.

    • Natalie
      October 27, 2016, 8:41 am

      Very true, Gigi! — Tiny House Talk Team

  • Stewart
    October 26, 2016, 8:05 pm

    To have a living room sofa be turned into “the dining table”, and also a bed is not sanitary and is unhealthy ! Not to mention the Radon Gas issue!
    Oh sure, there is a system known as the Active Soil Depressurization (ASD) system to mitigate radon gas from accumulating in a home but those are very expensive systems. And, the reason they are so expensive is because the Distributor/Installation Company can sell you only once in your lifetime, but…you’re not off the financial hook once it’s installed. In your Tiny Home it may cost you an additional $6 to $20 a month to run it, depending on who your utility provider is and what their rates are, and…to top it off ! the system needs to be serviced periodically. Can you say “More Money”. Now a “normal” full sized house will also be on the earth, which naturally emits radon gas but, a normal sized house typically isn’t hermetically sealed… so to speak. So, there are tiny air currents called “drafts” that are constantly in a normal sized home diluting the radon gas and naturally keeping it from reaching a toxic level. Unfortunately, in the last few decades with the advent of technology came the ability for builders to completely seal the dwelling from “drafts. That ability… caused in our nation, Radon Gas related deaths. The last figure I read was 21,000 last year, but you won’t see that in national news.
    Now, let’s look at Mother Nature. A normal home is required to be able to withstand a Category 1 Hurricane. Here is the standard by which Hurricanes were categorized.
    Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale
    Category Sustained Winds
    1 74-95 mph, 64-82 knots, 119-153 km/h
    2 96-110 mph, 83-95 knots, 154-177 km/h
    3 (major) 111-129 mph, 96-112 knots, 178-208 km/h
    4 (major) 130-156 mph, 113-136 knots, 209-251 km/h
    5 (major) 157-170 mph, 291-315 knots, 253-274 km/h

    There are no building standards for Tiny Homes. Anybody can build one. You don’t have to be a licensed builder.
    Do you know what “sustained winds” are? They are different than “gusts of wind”. A “gust of wind” put stress on the structure for a brief moment in time. A “sustained wind” puts stress on a structure for a prolonged period of time. Eventually impacting on the small structural weaknesses every building has in one form or another.
    A normal sized home… in most cases will go through a Category 2 Hurricane without any catastrophic or complete destruction.
    Very few normal sized homes will be standing after a Category 3 Hurricane. A Tiny Home will blow away during a Category 1 Hurricane. Unless the Category 1 Hurricane lasts for 10 minutes.
    It may still be standing, but we all no “that ain’t going to happen”!
    Now lets look at Lightning strikes. Depending on where you live in the country lighting is… an all to real concern.
    For example if you live in the lightning capital of the world which is from the Tampa Bay Area to the East Coast, in what is referred to as the I-4 corridor. Lighting is a very real threat on a daily basis from April to September and Hurricanes as well.
    If a normal sized home is hit by lighting it is extremely rare that it does complete catastrophic damage, or kills the occupants inside. In a Tiny Home you can be assured of total destruction, and death if there are occupants in the Tiny Home at the time. There you have it ! Now you’ll be making an informed decision with facts that most people are to stupid to even bother considering.

    • Jane on Whidbey
      October 30, 2016, 6:44 pm

      Well, aren’t you the little ray of sunshine in my otherwise dark and desperate ignorance? Thanks!

      • Natalie
        October 31, 2016, 9:54 am

        Very interesting! — Tiny House Talk Team

    • Rob
      November 3, 2016, 1:32 pm

      I don’t understand your comments about Radon gas. That gas tends to build up in basements since it comes from the earth. The floor of the home would block that from occurring. A smaller size home would have less floor to build up, so it shouldn’t be any more than a large home in concentration.

      A lightning strike is rare on a home and can be dissipated by proper grounding. This house was designed by a company in Northern Wisconsin. If you were to build it in a lightning or hurricane area, you would be a fool not to meet local codes so your home survives. Many of the codes that apply to main homes are avoided by Tiny homes, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t meet them anyway. If I built a tiny home in a hurricane area, I would build it with hurricane straps, windows with security film, etc. anyway.

    • Michael L
      August 18, 2017, 1:56 pm

      Hopefully that rant is over! It’s an interesting home. And I’ll leave it at that!

    October 26, 2016, 8:26 pm

    Well it sure is beautiful and far from a tiny house dwelling that’s for sure… I love it’s design so I’ not even going to look for a price tag and ruin the vision…

    • Natalie
      October 27, 2016, 8:41 am

      I loved it too — Tiny House Talk Team

  • Samson
    October 27, 2016, 5:23 am

    Functional design, good for a weekend trip with friends. I miss the “cosiness” that make the place worth for a permanent living.

    • Natalie
      October 31, 2016, 9:55 am

      Yes I always need cozy! — Tiny House Talk Team

  • Barnie
    October 31, 2016, 3:32 pm

    Exquisite! And loads of possibilities for customization/personalizing. I love it.

  • louise gray
    August 18, 2017, 11:10 am

    I do like its modern lines and simplicity. But for me, it is a little too woody. Perhaps some contrasting materials would soften the overall effect. But it is very nice and I would enjoy living in it.

  • Cate
    August 18, 2017, 11:34 am

    So, in order to close it up for the night you have to go OUTSIDE. Poor planning there. Too sterile looking.

  • Mark
    August 18, 2017, 2:18 pm

    Looks like everything inside came out of a 4×8 plywood panel contest…

  • Betty
    August 18, 2017, 9:26 pm

    Nice, but not my type of tiny home.

  • Susanne
    September 26, 2017, 10:59 am

    I agree a little “woody” but if it greatly reduces the cost I’d take it and add “warm” touches!!!! 😉

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