Tiny Houses in Connecticut


I saw this structure while driving on Interstate 91. It’s most likely not a tiny house since the Jamaica Cottage Shop doesn’t claim to make them. But it did get me thinking about the idea again.

A couple years ago I saw my first photo feature on so-called tiny houses. For those not familiar with the concept, a tiny house tries to pack all the essential features of a dwelling into a very small structure. Some of the smallest versions check in at less than 100 sqft. It’s a combination of minimalism and design efficiency. How little can you survive with? And how well can you organize those essentials into a functional home?

My interest was piqued by some of the plans by Tumbleweed Tiny Houses. Their website has pictures and schematics for many of their designs on the website, though it’s difficult to truly understand just how small they are. You can take a video tour of founder Jay Shafer’s 89 sqft abode to give you a sense of scale. They’re small. Really small.

Last fall a Yale graduate student gained regional attention for the tiny home she designed on the back of a trailer. You can learn more about her project in this article by a New Haven Register reporter and see a video tour made by the Hartford Courant.

These stories are probably the closest that most of us will ever come to experiencing a tiny house. There is, however, some hope for a small house. West Hartford has one property in particular that has the potential to be a very nice small home. It’s about 650 sqft and at this point is in need of a total makeover. Amy’s sick of hearing me talk about it, but it could be a really great place if “tiny house” principles were applied.

There could be a decent sized great room with built-in cabinets to house the various electronic necessities and provide storage. I’m envisioning a kitchen further back and open to the main living area, with the bathroom behind that. There may even be room for another room that could serve as both a dining room and guest bedroom (if it utilized a Murphy Bed). Above the back portion of the house would be a sleeping loft that would be the primary bedroom and provide more storage. Finally, there is a full basement and all the possibilities it provides.

Alas, Amy and I will not be moving. But if anyone is interested in taking on a project like that, feel free to contact me…

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