Design Decisions

As you might know from my previous posts, I’m planning on making my house about 22 feet long and at least 7’6″ wide. Here are a couple other decisions I’ve made.

Roof line: This one took me ages to make up my mind about. I looked at shed roofs but I wouldn’t be able to deal with having a lopsided roof; I want it to be symmetrical on both sides. I considered a gambrel roof like April Anson’s tiny house, but I wouldn’t be able to have a skylight. I like the look of a gable roof, but it doesn’t give a lot of space in the lofts for sleeping and storage. I want the space that dormers give without the complications of adding dormers to the roof. I really don’t want a leaky roof and adding dormers adds more potential leak spots, especially considering I’ve never done a roof before. Finally, I just decided to make the whole roof like dormers. Meaning that instead of having a 12/12 pitch like a gable roof, my roof will be closer to a 4/12 pitch (I’ll have to figure out the exact slope so I can have skylights because they require a certain minimum slope) and my walls will be a few feet taller. This way, I can have skylights, I’ll have more space in the lofts, and my roof will be simple and the same from front to back.

Windows in the sleeping loft: This took forever to decide too, because I needed to pick a roof line first. Since I’ll be sleeping up there, it’ll need to get quite dark, but I want it to have natural light during the day so I can sit up there and read. Out of the tiny houses I’ve seen, generally if they have a gable roof, there’s a skylight, and if they have dormers, there are windows on the sides. Then I thought about my room now, which is in the basement, and having windows level with me while lying down would be weird, but I have a window above the bed that I can see the sky through. So I decided on no side windows and a skylight. The skylight will open, so it will also be an escape route if necessary. And I’ll be able to see the stars at night! And see the beautiful blue sky during the day, right from my room. Maybe having natural light shining in in the morning will help fix my backwards sleep schedule, but I’ll probably just get a curtain.

I’ll also have a skylight on the opposite side of the roof over the main room that won’t open, because I won’t be able to reach it!

One thing I thought I had decided but my dad has since made me reconsider is the little front porch. I was planning on having a bump-out for my lovely window seat and then having a little 3′ by 3′ covered porch – my door is definitely going to be wider than the Tumbleweed one. Dad’s been saying that I should use all of the precious trailer space and I can add a porch later. But adding a covered porch (I do not want to be fumbling with keys in the rain) would be a bit more difficult. And I want that window seat spot.  But if I did want that inside space later and I used it for the mini porch, I wouldn’t be able to change that. But I also don’t want to live in a big rectangular box; the porch and bump-out would make it more like a house. But one flat wall on the end would be stronger and easier to build. I’ll have to think about this some more.




2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Elaine Walker
    Jun 13, 2014 @ 11:17:34

    Building without the porch would be easier and is more practical as it gives you more living space. However, a large part of the appeal of a tiny house (over a mobile home or RV) is its beauty and comfort. I have a porch on my tiny house and I love it. I think if you stay with your plan for the window seat and porch, you’ll be very happy that you did. Your house will be lovely and you’ll look forward to coming home to it. 🙂


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"It takes as much energy to wish as it does to plan." - Eleanor Roosevelt

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