The housing affordability crisis has affected people from different walks of life across the world. From young professionals to families with children and retirees, people are finding it difficult to keep up with rising rents and rising property prices. Many are choosing alternative means of homeownership or less traditional living arrangements, whether that be cohousing, living in multi-generational households, or choosing smaller spaces to call home, whether that may be small apartments, converted vehicles, or tiny homes. Houses.
Admittedly, such solutions do not necessarily address the root causes of housing affordability, which range from lack of land, lending, labor and materials to lack of funding for social programs for corporate landlords and the “financialization” of the housing market. . But for many, smaller living spaces could be a way to at least get a foothold in the housing market right now. Moreover, most people don’t expect to have problems finding housing, but sometimes, it’s just a disaster.
For New Zealand-based designer Rebecca, it was “a series of unfortunate events” that led to her becoming a homeless mother, single with a young child, and unable to afford rent in Auckland. Fortunately, Rebecca has a sister with a piece of land she can turn to, so Rebecca decides to design and build a small house she can call her own, and it is now parked near her sister’s house in the country. We got a tour of this adorable little gem via Living Big In A Tiny House:
Rebecca’s tiny house measures 10 x 35 feet, and is the extra-wide type, with an additional 1.5 feet of width. It may not seem like a lot, but as we’ve seen with other very spacious tiny houses, it can make a big difference in terms of having more options for different layouts.
The home’s exterior is clad in black corrugated metal siding, and with the contrasting white windows, it gives the home a clean, contemporary look.
Rebecca also designed and installed a modular, removable deck that helps extend the interior space outward. Currently, she has parlayed that design experience into a small commercial home product she calls Ready Deck Systems.
Upon entering inside, one is amazed at how light the interior is. Despite the small space, Rebecca has managed to create a space that is truly uplifting, thanks to her careful placement of windows and simple treatment of decor and finishes.
The living room, for example, feels like a cozy haven. With this extra width, Rebecca was able to fit a larger sofa that she could lie on. Long, sheer curtains not only let in plenty of light, but they also help emphasize how high the space is.
In the kitchen, we begin to see evidence of Rebecca’s love of mirrors. Not only do they bounce and increase the amount of light within the space, but mirrors also give the illusion of space extending beyond the walls – a clever design trick.
Everything in the kitchen is designed to create a stylish look, from the cabinets that hide small appliances to the LED lighting strip hidden under the cabinets.
The bathroom is located down the small corridor directly next to the kitchen. Here, Rebecca once again put those mirrors to good use on one of the walls, giving the impression that the space is much larger than it actually is.
The dusty pink color scheme provides a soft feel, while the spacious walk-in shower – with its own window all the way – makes it feel luxurious.
Rebecca’s son’s room is located at the end of the hall, and is one of the largest children’s bedrooms we’ve seen in a tiny house. There’s enough space for his bed, storage for clothes and toys, and a full-height wall painted with glow-in-the-dark stars and moon for him to enjoy.
We return to the corridor and go up the stairs between the kitchen and the bathroom, which leads to Rebecca’s home office and bedroom. Here, she installed a series of drawers in the drawer and well-hidden cabinets that provide plenty of extra storage space.
The upstairs space is really good. Not only was Rebecca able to create enough headroom to roam by lowering the height of the bath below a bit, but she also implemented a great design here. The home office has enough space for a desk with two computer monitors, a chair, and file storage. The long wall of mirrors here again enhances the lighting while also making us think that there is more space beyond the wall.
The bedroom is also exquisitely designed, raised on a storage platform and semi-surrounded by windows.
Rebecca estimates she spent about $142,000 to build the house and prepare the land. Rebecca says it was a pleasure to design her own home, but even better was the feeling of residential security in these uncertain times.