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Tiny House Design Competition

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Catherine Li, Joshua Carlson, Sonora Manthey, & Natalie Muenz

ID: 1460

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Voting Ends: Apr 26, 2021
ID: 1460
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Home is what you make it, and in America, we tend to make it very big. In 2019, the average single-family house in the United States was 2,301 square feet, the second largest average in the world! The ecological and economic impacts of living big are profound. Energy bills increase due to the large square footage that needs to be powered and heated, leading to more carbon emissions. Buying or renting a space can also come at a high cost, making it difficult for people to find affordable housing. All of these issues compounded have left people searching for a housing solution, many turning to downsize as it reduces their ecological footprints and allows for more economic freedom.

This tiny home was designed with smaller families in mind. Because we live in a university town, many of the people interested in more affordable housing are students and young couples, who may not be able to afford larger homes on the market. Our house comes with one bedroom, one full bathroom, an office (that can also be converted to a second bedroom if necessary), a living room, a full kitchen, and a greenhouse. The bedroom is in the loft of the home, which can be accessed through a set of stairs with built in storage. It has a window facing onto the lawn and accommodates a queen size bed with space for a closet. On the first floor, the kitchen has an open concept layout, which opens up to the living room. This design allows for maximum utilization of the limited space, and also allows for the people in the home to communicate with each other better, overall leading to a more connected experience. The decision to incorporate the office was largely due to the current Covid-19 pandemic which has caused many people to have to work from home. This addition of the office will allow the homeowners to have a separate space to do their work, eliminating the risk of interruptions.

This tiny house utilizes modern technology to its fullest extent. To reduce the energy bill and limit the home’s impact on the environment, this house has the potential to run completely on solar, having city power as a backup. Additionally, the majority of its food can be grown in the attached greenhouse, which can be accessed via a door inside the house and external door near the front porch.

Building a tiny home also allows for customizations, making it so that any modern comforts that a larger home supplies can also be found in a smaller home. For the house to be suitable for any family, adjustments could be made. Solar panels can be removed or added, a garage can be added in the area next to the patio, and the house can even be hooked up to a water filtration and storage system through a well, making it entirely self-sustainable.

We hope that this tiny home design gives homeowners inspiration to think sustainably when deciding to purchase a home!

Catherine Li, Joshua Carlson, Sonora Manthey, & Natalie MuenzCatherine Li, Joshua Carlson, Sonora Manthey, & Natalie MuenzCatherine Li, Joshua Carlson, Sonora Manthey, & Natalie MuenzCatherine Li, Joshua Carlson, Sonora Manthey, & Natalie Muenz

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