This 250 sq. ft. tiny guest house in Oakland, California is a guest post by John Olmsted of New Avenue Homes
Travis and Kelly approached New Avenue back in February 2013 to discuss adding an accessory dwelling to the backyard of their Oakland, CA home. This 250 square foot casita is intended as a guesthouse and office.
Construction took about 5 to 6 months and began at the end of 2013. Some challenges to this project included poor access to the backyard, a very sloped lot, and older utilities which lead to a replaced water line. Just as the work came to completion in June 2014, Travis and Kelly adopted a baby. Now they take turns working from home two days a week in their backyard office so they can spend quality time with the newest member of their family.
When family and friends are in town to see the new baby or if Travis and Kelly are entertaining and hosting a get-together, they offer their casita as a small home away from home for overnight guests. It has a fully functioning bathroom and working washer dryer. When the family is away, it serves as a residence for their dog-sitter.
250 Sq. Ft. Tiny House in Oakland, CA Backyard (Guest House)
“I am curious about the “tiny house” as a legitimate, full time housing option…do they/can they…meet building codes, be attached to the ground, be connected to public water, sewer, and other public utilities, meet energy code standards, meet zoning codes, etc.”
I urge you to read more about legally living tiny, creating communities and even opportunities below:
I had the chance to capture this tiny pink guest cottage in Florida a few days ago and wanted to share it with you here.
The owner didn’t have the exact dimensions but it’s definitely less than 500 sq. ft. and she was nice enough to let me take pictures inside and out for me to share with you.
This is what I call a grandfathered-in tiny cottage here in Florida because you can no longer build this small in this seaside town.
The cottage is also rare because it hasn’t been added onto like most of the ones that are still around in the area. It’s pretty much in its original state besides general upkeep and maintenance throughout the years.
Tiny Cottage in Florida
Photos by Alex Pino
I only wish they still built homes like this today instead of the oversized cookie cutter homes we normally see being developed around here.
Anyway, I encourage you to enjoy touring the rest of this beautiful tiny house on a foundation below:
I thought you’d like this tiny house that’s in Yport on top of a cliff in Normandy, France. My favorite part about it is not only the location but the rooftop terraces that are accessible on the second floor from the bedroom.
Directly underneath the rooftop terraces are some covered patios. These are available as wings on opposite sides of the home. It was created by architect Franklin Azzi and can actually be finished in a variety of ways which I’ll show you below.
Last year, in a Podcast conversation with Andrew Odom of Tiny Revolution he asked me why we built our tiny house on a foundation rather than wheels. I chuckled because the answer was actually quite boring and practical. Our tiny house is on a mountain and there is a significant slope to the land. We built it on a post a pier foundation to avoid two things: the house rolling down the mountain and having to bring heavy equipment up the mountain to level a spot and pour a slab.
We chose this location because it is where we wanted our tiny house to be.
I won’t lie – the foundation was the single hardest thing we did during our tiny house build. It was a pain to figure out how to build it in three dimensions. Not only did we need it to be square and level but it also needed to be plumb. We agonized over this process and in the end we have a very well-built house that is pretty solid.
Photo by Laura M. LaVoie
The steps for building our foundation were:
Map the footprint
Figure out the slope (which goes in two directions)
Use a two-man auger to dig the post holes
Place Sonotubes and measure the height and level of each pier
Mix and pour concrete
Set anchor bolts
Measure and cut 4x4s for the highest posts
Assemble the structure and decking
Photo By Laura M. LaVoie
We had a friend help us with the auger because no matter how tough I pretend to be that huge machine was not something I could handle. Once the holes were dug, though, Matt and I were on our own.
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