Foldable Home Can Be Installed in a Day

Living Room

Prefab homes are a great solution when looking to build fast, and now there is another awesome option to do so on the market.  The Italian architect Renato Vidal has recently unveiled a prefab foldable home, which can be installed in less than a day. The so-called M.A.Di home comes flat-packed and is built using sustainable materials and means, but designed with durability in mind.  It can also withstand earthquakes.

The M.A.Di home is made of CLT (cross laminated timber) and manufactured by wood specialist Area Legno in Italy. It is available in several sizes, namely a 290-sq ft (27-sq m) tiny home, a slightly larger 495-sq ft (46-sq m) home, a 603-sq ft (56-sq m) home, a family sized 753-sq ft (70-sq m) home, or an even larger family home of 904-sq ft (84-sq m).  All the models have two levels and have a kitchen, dining area and bathroom located on the ground level, and bedrooms on the upper level. The homes feature an A frame structure, which makes it easy to fold them for flat-packing and easy transport to the build site.

Exterior

Exterior

Bedroom

Living Room

The home features a steel profile and steel hinges, meaning that each module can be opened and closed with ease.  When closed and folded, the height of the package is just 4.9 ft (1.5 m), while opened, it measures 21.3 ft (6.5 ft) in height. All of the M.A.Di modules have galvanized steel frames which are designed to support the home’s opening and closing movement. The homes are waterproofed using Polyurethane foam, which also provides the thermal insulation. In addition to this, the walls are insulated using high-density rockwool, while the windows can either be PVC or aluminum.

The actual installation is very simple, since each module just unfolds up.  The home doesn’t need a foundation, since it can be anchored in place with a specially-designed screw pile system, which has virtually no impact so this home has a very tiny footprint.   The home can also be built on a reinforced concrete foundation, if so desired.

Large Module Plan

Single Module Plan

The home can be easily packed away, while it is possible to extend the existing home by adding new modules. It can also be designed according to passive house standards, while there is also the option of taking it off-the-grid by installing a solar power array, composting toilet, water tanks and a gray water system.

The price of this home is $933 (€800) per square meter, so the smallest home will cost about $25,195 (€21,600) and the largest $73,385 (€67,200).

The Millennial Tiny House is Full of Space Saving Ideas

The New Zealand firm Build Tiny recently completed a tiny home, which has some very innovative and effective space-saving features. This so-called Millennial Tiny House is also available to buy at various price points and is therefore accessible to those on a budget, as well as those who want a fully equipped home, which they can move into right away.

 

The Millennial Tiny House measures 23 by 7.8 ft (7.2 by 2.4 m) and rests atop a double-axle trailer, so it can easily be towed. Most of the interior space is taken up by the living/kitchen/dining area, while storage is located beneath the floor, which frees up the available space considerably. The downside of this is that a sofa or regular dining table would make this storage space hard to access, but this can be solved by fitting the home with movable furniture.

The home also features a unique and innovative sliding staircase, which leads to the sleeping loft above the living area. This staircase can be stored away when not needed, then pulled out from the wall to provide access to the loft. It’s made from poplar-plywood and has a lightweight aluminum frame. Next to this staircase is the bathroom, which is separated from the rest of the home by a sliding door. It is fitted with a sink, shower and a composting toilet on wheels, and there is also enough space here for a laundry area.

The home’s kitchen is also very generously sized, with enough room for a full-size fridge, a sink, a two-burner propane stove, a large counter and plenty of storage space. The home’s second loft is located above the kitchen and accessible via the kitchen counter and a ladder installed above it. This loft can be used as a home office or a second bedroom. The office already has a built-in desk, which is attached to the wall. There is also a footwell which uses a kitchen shelf to provide a comfortable sitting experience. This area also features some additional storage space. The home is also fitted with two large French doors which are located opposite each other to provide great ventilation, as well as flood the interior with natural light.

The Millennial Tiny House features a steel frame and Earthwool insulation in the ceiling and walls, while polystyrene was used for underfloor insulation. The cladding is Cedartech and treated steel, while the home features a typical RV-style hookup for power. The company also offers the optional solar power upgrade, which would make this dwelling independent of the grid.

The model pictured here is a prototype but the Millennial Tiny House is also already available to purchase. There are three pricing tiers, which start at $43,000 (59,750 NZD) for just the watertight shell, $65,500 (90,995 NZD) for the shell, along with all the plumbing, wiring and insulation, while the fully-fitted version can be purchased for $86,700 (120,500 NZD).

Fully Customizable Off-grid Tiny Home

Living Room

Since tiny homes are so small, the key to living in them comfortably is a clever interior layout. And this is best achieved when it is tailored to your specific needs.  Enter the so-called Kootenay tiny house built by the firm TruForm Tiny. Potential customers have a wide range of layouts, as well as size, materials, colors, and even furniture to choose from when ordering one.  The home is towable and can also be made to operate completely off-the-grid.

The Kootenay comes in three sizes, namely 20, 24, and 28 ft (6, 7.3, and 8.5 m) in length.  The model pictured in this post is the largest, 28 ft (8.5 m)-long one.  Its total floor space measures 379 sq ft (35.2 sq m) and it features a metal roof.  The exterior cladding comes in different colors and wood types, while the color of the roof, the style of the exterior and even the window frames can also be chosen by the customer.

Exterior Deck

Exterior Side

Sleeping Loft

The interior features a living area with a sofa, a kitchen with a well-sized breakfast bar, a small oven and plenty of cupboards and shelves.  There is also enough room for a washer/dryer, dishwasher, and full-size appliances, which can be purchased as optional extras.

The far end of the home is taken up by a relatively spacious bathroom, which features a full-size bathtub. The Kootenay has two lofts. The larger one is accessible via a set of stairs and is meant as the master bedroom, though the latter can also be installed on the ground level should the client wish so.  The second loft is accessible via a ladder, and can be used as a guest room, though it is perhaps more suitable as a storage area.   The home also features a drop down deck, which extends from the living area.

Kitchen

Breakfast Bar

Bathroom

The Kootenay can be connected to the grid via a standard RV-style hookup, but a custom off-grid package is also available. This includes a solar power array, a wood-burning stove, a composting toilet, and a propane-powered fridge.

The basic version of The Kootenay costs $57,900.

Light-filled Tiny House Made of Reclaimed Materials

I prefer rustic style tiny homes over the more modern, minimalist ones, and the new creation by tiny house maker Wood & Heart, based in New Hampshire, is a prime example of everything done right. The tiny house is called Legacy and is made of mostly reclaimed materials, which only adds to its rustic charm. This is the first tiny home built by the company and they’ve entered the market in a big way with it, as far as I’m concerned.

The Legacy tiny home is 26 ft (7.9 m) long and appears more spacious than it actually is thanks to the large windows, which flood the interior with natural light. The exterior cladding is cedar and features Shou Sugi Ban-style charred cedar trimming for contrast. The interior walls are also clad in wood, while they used closed-cell spray foam insulation to insulate the home. There is an exterior utility closet where they stored a tankless water heater, a propane tank and the 50-amp electrical panel with an RV outlet.

The counters are made of black walnut and African mahogany, while the flooring is solid hardwood oak. The home also features floating black walnut shelves and dining table. The kitchen is fitted with a four-burner stovetop with a beveled marble splashback and a 24-inch ceramic farmhouse sink. The split system AC unit is also installed here.

The living area is well-spaced for a tiny home, and features a pull-out sofa as well as plenty of storage space. The bedroom is located in a loft. The bathroom features honeycomb-patterned tiling on the floor and an an accent wall made from reclaimed timber. It is also spacious enough to fit a full-size tub and shower.

The ceiling is clad in rough-sawn planks of reclaimed timber and they placed three large skylights here, which together with the 13 Andersen windows elsewhere in the home lets in ample amounts of natural daylight.

The Legacy is set atop a trailer and can be purchased for $85,000. This price includes all the furniture, appliances and decor.

Tiny House Development in Detroit Aims to Offer Affordable Housing

The Detroit-based non-profit Cass Community Social Services (CCSS) recently unveiled the first six tiny homes already completed as part of their affordable housing solution in the area. The development is located between the Lodge and Woodrow Wilson Street, and will consist of 25 tiny homes once completed. This is a rent-to-own tiny house project with the final aim of making home ownership accessible to low-income individuals.

The homes will measure from 250 to 400 square feet, and will each have its own foundation. They will be built by local professional tradespeople and volunteers. Rental prices are set at $1 per square foot, so that a 300-square-foot house would cost $300 a month to rent. The homes will come fully furnished, and will have all the necessary appliances, though there will be no bedroom, meaning that they are not ideally suited for families. This tiny house development is located near the CCSS main campus, so that residents will have easy access to the social, educational, recreational and health services that the agency offers.

The tenants who apply to live in one of these houses will have to meet low-income eligibility requirements, as well as be interviewed and go through a selection process. The housing is intended for low-income seniors, students, and even homeless people. The rent they will pay will be a maximum of one third of their monthly wage, and after a maximum of seven years of paying rent they will become the owners of the house. The estimated utilities costs in this house are only $35 per month. The tenants will also have to attend financial coaching and home maintenance classes once a month.

This tiny house project is funded by private donations as well as by several foundations, namely the Ford Motor Fund, the RNR Foundation, and the McGregor Fund. Providing affordable housing is just one of CCSS’ long-term goals for the area. There are more than 300 vacant lots within a one-mile radius of this development, which they also plan to develop.

Overall, this is a very forward-thinking project, which has many benefits both for low-income individuals, as well as for the neighborhood as a whole. It’s also nice to see tiny homes gaining traction in mainstream housing planning.