Tiny House with Storage

In our mission to find enough prefab homes, modular homes, tiny homes, cabins and other options so that everyone will see enough that they can find the best one for their needs and have their own home, we came across this tiny house based on the boxy design that makes is simple and uncomplicated.

It’s a southwestern-style tiny house — look at that plain timber siding for the top, brick design on the bottom, and on wheels, as you can just barely see, hidden behind a flower pot and the small slide out deck.

Nicely, that slide out deck steps up onto the larger outdoor sun-deck on the back of the tiny house, which has a large window into the inside. Actually, there are large simple windows around the structure, letting in a good quantity of sunlight and venting hot air.

This tiny house is a one bedroom, and it has a full kitchen, a living/dining room in addition to the loft and bathroom.

This particular tiny home became known for it’s bicycle area — the owner was an avid bicycler and this tiny house was featured on the hit TV show FYI’s Tiny House Nation. The episode is called “Rustic Bike House.”

How big would you guess for this tiny house? 170 square feet. It’s tiny, alright, but it suits its owners, who live on a farm with it. If this tiny house isn’t enough for you today, check out the Building Homes and Living directory, where we’re adding links all the time to more designers and builders.

Tiny Home RV

RVs and park model homes really range in how they impress people, don’t they? Trailers, for example, have a bit of a bad name (although even this is changing nowadays, I think) because some of them get a bit run down, but then on the other hand, there’s really fancy units, and a lot of the new prefab homes and modular homes that come out in sizes similar to park model sizes — and in some cases come on wheels as well — are designed by real architects.

All sorts of architects, actually. So that there’s a huge variety of options when considering buying a prefab, modular home or RV. This one we found was designed by Jamie Mackay, and it’s called the “Park Model RV” and its located on his campground in Wyoming. He’s shared it with the world as a low cost design for a park model.

He’s actually offering to build these for other folks as well. Here’s what he says about that: “It took me a while to come up with the finalized design, working with small spaces is a difficult process. The ‘Park Model’ is built out of SIP panels and SIP roof system, 4″ walls and 6″ roof, keeping heating and cooling costs down.

“The exterior of the unit is a mixture of rusty metal and cedar siding that was stained to look like barn wood. One could use barn wood although it would be 4x the cost. I am currently working on building more of these units and will ship to quite a few this summer. For more details and materials used feel free to contact me at [email protected]

So you even have this RV designers email being offered publicly. That makes me think he’s ready to put out a quality product.  The price for this mobile RV prefab home is $95,000.

You can also find our list of builders and designers in the Building Homes and Living directory.

Build A Cabin In A Weekend For Under $5,000

What do you think of arched cabin? They have a kind of outdoorsy feel, don’t they, even compared with prefab buildings. These things remind me of ski lodges and summer cabins by the ocean. Take a look at the photo — don’t you agree?

Because they’re made of metal — metal buildings are another thing we’ve been looking at lately on here — you don’t have as much of a worry with fires, or rot for that matter. You can build these on the ground on a concrete foundation or pier and beam, or you can build them on a basement or even up elevated above the ground many feet, against a tree like a treehouse or freestanding.

The company that we found building these arched cabins is called just that: “Arched Cabins.” They’re based out of Cypress, Texas, and that’s important, because their delivery fees are based on the miles from area code 77429. Between two and two and a half dollars per mile one way depending on the size of the arched cabin being shipped.

There’s a price chart for the costs involved, and assembly is estimated at around 4 days for a 24 by 40 foot cabin. If you need their skilled workers to assemble it for you, that’s another 4 days of labor at a grand per day. So unless you’re going to build one that big, if you had a crew you could probably get it up between Friday and Monday morning, or if not, maybe a long weekend. Anyway, not a huge long job like it would be to build something like this from timber from scratch.

Anyway, an interesting idea that’s working for some people, so worth comparing to the other options we’ve talked about on here for inexpensive housing, like prefab houses, modular houses, and tiny houses. For more from Arched Cabins, find them in the Building Homes and Living directory.

How to Build an Outdoor Bench for $13

Got a couple of dollars and want to build your own DIY outdoor bench? What are you waiting for? Building a small woodworking project is a healthy exercise in do-it-yourselfing, and working with wood is a pleasure.

Where would you stick this DIY bench? Probably in your garden or garage, but you could put it on your porch or inside your house as well.

So what do you need for this bench? Well, some 2×4 lumber — about $13 dollars worth of it. In addition, you’ll use some sandpaper, some wood glue and stain / paint to finish it, as well as a paint brush to put it on. Plus you’ll need some basic tools like a saw and drill.

This design was put together by TheIdeaRoom, who come up with all sorts of project ideas on a regular basis.

The author of TheIdeaRoom got the idea from Instagram where someone posted a bench she liked, and she made her own. So we’ll send you over to her site now if you’re ready to take on your own DIY work bench project: How to Build an Outdoor Bench for $13.


Unique Farmhouse for Mid-Size Family w/ Porch (HQ Plans & Pictures)

A farmhouse is something I think a lot of people aspire to, whether it’s a big Georgian building a hundred years old or a modern prefab or modular tiny house. Here’s something kind of in the middle. It’s a new design, but the look is somewhat classic.

It’s called “Holly Ridge Farmhouse” and it was designed by Sala’s Marc Sloot (and photographed by Troy Thies). The Kitchen design was done by Sloot teamed with David Heide Design. And the building was built by Cates Fine Homes.

Actually, this design won an award, the A|A Home of the Month.

The home designers were going for a peaceful and natural impression with this one. While the house is small and practical — well, not that small, not like a tiny home or any of the small prefabs we’ve been looking at recently. This one’s just over 3,000 square feet, inluding 1,000 of basement, and it’s a 3 bedroom home with 2 bathrooms, that open porch you see in the photo, and a screen porch.

But in addition to its basic practicality, it’s a calming, invigorating, picturesque home design, made for farms, and it’s about the right size for small families, empty nesters, and is still big enough to have family and friends come over and visit.

This house is also eco-friendly. It got a Wisconsin Green Built Home certification. To see more of Sala’s work, find them in the Building Homes and Living directory.

Designed! A Better Houseboat

There are some people who really desire to own a waterfront home and enjoy the magnificent scenic view of the lake or sea. And because it is one’s own home which means it is one’s own personal living space either in town or city, it is best to experience optimum comfort, solace and a place that promotes good well-being. Living on waterfront homes provides such beautiful experiences but living on water is much more appealing if one considers a unique dwelling that caters superb houseboat living experiences.

What is more exciting is how one’s houseboat is luxuriously designed by great houseboat designers and builders!

Arkiboat houseboats designed and built in Sydney by renowned architect Drew Heath is certainly a beautiful abode that illustrates exceptional masterpiece in today’s modern houseboats. These intricately designed home boats are mobile so they are transported from Sydney into homeowners’ location. Drew Heath thought that houseboats are meant to be exquisitely designed for aesthetics and for function purpose and they should not just be built without considering these two important aspects.

Families who own Arkiboat houseboats are lucky to have 24/7 magnificent scenic views, impressive interior and exterior, and an abode to be really called a home sweet home. After all, it’s your own personal space on earth, so why not have the best that modern architecture can offer.

These beautiful Arkiboats’ wall framework is made out of marine grade aluminum. Its solar pane panels are mounted on the roof. The solar regulators are very useful when there is low power generation; it has an option for a 24 volt rapid charge alternator that is adjusted to the flywheel of the starboard motor.

This houseboat is actually designed intricately and exquisitely and the appliances included in this house are giving more home value that the whole family and even guests can enjoy. A 2,500 watt raditronic sinewave inverter, a 24 volt 220 liter Kelvinator fridge, an auto ignition hot water heater in the bathroom, a Smev 12 volt ignition cookplate and underbench oven and a deluxe saltwater flush and macerator toilet are incorporated to make houseboat living comfortable. To see more of Arkiboat’s work, find them in the Building Homes and Living directory.


Scandinavian-inspired Prefab Home

Home living has changed gradually and eventually many families will end up having their own beautiful prefab home — prefab houses have come a long way in design and price, and they’re now suited to what more people are looking for in a first house, downsized house, or second house or cabin. Prefab houses are specialized dwellings that are constructed off-site and they are easily moved between locations and re-assembled. Many contemporary prefab home projects are now designed by serious architects and prefab designers/builders, driven by creative thinking design.

These Danish ONV contemporary prefabricated houses provide modest Scandinavian elegance with highlights on purposefulness, well-lit and extraordinary quality materials. They are intricately designed by ONV Arkitekter for Method Homes. These lovely architect-designed modular dwellings feature a discreet box-like form with tidy lines, peripheral layer, good-sized windows, and a gorgeous shielded veranda connecting between the house and the beautiful garden.

Its big windows allow sufficient natural light all over the house. Detachable panel shutters enhance the exquisiteness of the central façade. The shutters also provide shade to the veranda and some solitude to the whole abode.

At the central area of this modular prefab house, you can find the kitchen and dining area and the living room gives you the access to the veranda and bedrooms. The layout and size of the house are flexible; it ranges from 86 to 175 square meters. Home owners have the option to expand their home by having additional components which are useful for other family needs. Adding an extra component will be useful in the future as expansion becomes inevitable.

This nice Scandinavian-inspired prefab home is undeniably a good choice to consider. And since it is primed for modification and you can discuss the points and ideas that you have in mind before you settle on this particular project, you are assured of customer satisfaction. To see more of Method’s and ONV Arkitecter’s work, find them in the Building Homes and Living directory.

Scandinavian-inspired Prefab Home

Floating Island Houseboat

The idea of living on water is irresistibly fun and adventurous! You have a good view in the morning until dusk; you are lulled to sleep by lapping water and greeted with a beautiful morning by croaking gull. Houseboat living will definitely give you countless lovely experiences that you cannot have if you are living on land.

This fascinating Solar Floating Resort will surely define the distant future of unique architecture. As time calls for more dependence on natural and renewable resources, our lifestyle also adjusts. This floating house is a good answer to crowded and congested land population. It is entirely sheltered in a photovoltaic skin which makes it 100% self-sufficient and uses much lesser carbon footprint.

It is beautifully designed by Michele Puzzolante of MPD Designs to make it more ecological. Its round shape allows natural daylight for the whole day and the batteries are fed during the day which is sufficient for clean energy supply throughout the night.

About 6 guests can be accommodated with 110 square meter deck which is already a nice size for good lodging during holidays. Another wonderful thing is how the interior is skilfully set to bring purposeful living for the whole family. The attached bathrooms have space-saving water closet while the functional kitchen is large enough to make food preparation and cooking easy and simple. How about its Jacuzzi? You can experience therapeutic bath any time with its Jacuzzi.

Aside from it as an ecological dwelling, it is designed with sectional structure that can be divided into smaller components that are movable and assembled in almost any place. This is such a delightful houseboat abode that will certainly bring exciting and thrilling experiences while living on water. Indeed, home living becomes fun as more and more people embrace the charm of unique dwellings. To see more of Michele Puzzolante’s work, find them in the Building Homes and Living directory.

Park Model Tiny House with Impressive Interior Finishing

Every little house design has something unique to offer, and this gorgeous park model has striking interior finishes that have really impressed some tiny home enthusiasts. A lot of contemporary stylists and creators for the tiny home market are unceasingly going beyond past limits of what buyers expected to find in a tiny house, prefab or modular home.

I found out this eye-catching park model by Lil’ Lodges truly amazed me. This tiny mobile home has been featured on FYI Network’s Tiny House Nation. This stunning park model consists of two bedrooms and one bathroom. The design stands as an example, too, of the high quality finishes that can be accomplished in mobile homes.

The façade of this movable lodge is a nice blend of wood and stone. They impeccably combine together to form an attention-grabbing structure completed from natural resources. This house has a good sized porch for a nice relaxation area. And because of its good size, a big dining set can fit it.

The central living room is a very lovely! The sky-high basilica ceiling, outsized windows, and casement allows light flooding which illuminates the whole house. This well-lit house balances the shadowy tones all over the cabin. The bucolic wood finishes make a very cozy space while the elegant stone fireplace will naturally warm up this charming flooring plot.

The kitchen depicts a dim timber motif and its light-colored countertops balance its dark setting. It has appliances which provide a modern touch and at the same time there is big sink which makes the kitchen more appealing.

The master bedroom is situated at the hindmost of the floor design and it has sufficient large windows. The rural woody ceiling and closets enhance earthiness to the bedroom.

The grey tiles of the bathroom are contrasted pleasantly by the vivid white fixtures. This beautiful contrast creates a nice modern lavatory.

The second bedroom of this lovely park model is positioned at the loft space. It is designed with less natural light and blended with light shade of wood in contrast to the ground floor. The standing space of this room makes it elegant and classy and provides a good breathing space.

This impressive park model is undeniably a magnificent interior design that builders can offer. To see more of Lil’ Lodges’ work, find them in the Building Homes and Living directory. For best viewing, open this image on a large screen — it’s a big image.

2 Bedroom Cabin House for a Couple or Young Family

Emerging in popularity in this innovative modern era, tiny homes and prefab and modular houses are speedily popping in many areas. Many individuals have thought of downsizing their lifestyle as an answer to growing environmental issues of our current national and global civilization. With attentive, state-of-the-art designs, some property holders have realized that tiny houses direct them to a simpler yet sometimes more fulfilling life which connects them to closer family ties. It is great to gain freedom from high mortgages and the need to maintain costly upkeep of the house.

With a 973 square foot house size, there are many things that young couples can enjoy. Two bedrooms and two bathrooms make up this nice dwelling which can truly make a beautiful small family happy.

There is an open porch in the entrance which is great for relaxation and a source of quick comfort as days become very busy for the whole family. It is a nice area to gaze at the garden and be in tune with nature.

The living room has a fireplace which sets the temperature during cold weather. All throughout the house, there are windows which allow the family to enjoy the lovely surroundings while a vetted porch serves as a special hide-out to experience the gentle wind during idle afternoon teas.

For food preparation, a small uncluttered kitchen is set that is functional to serve simple or lavish lunch and dinner. A dining space is also included for a cozy dining experience for the whole family. Upstairs, there are two bedrooms and one bathroom is in the first floor while the other bathroom is in the second floor.

Indeed, this two bedroom cabin is good for young couples or starting families that would love to have beautiful memories in a lovely simple home.

To see more of Metal Building Homes’ work, find them in the Building Homes and Living directory.

This Custom Argosy

This custom Freightliner Argosy was a project at Paradise Coach Interiors, who are as you might guess a custom coach / motorhome build company. They’re based in Coberg, Oregon, if anyone is curious about doing a custom interior or rebuilt there.

This is a toterhome they built out of an Argosy chassis. A toterhome is also sometimes called a “sleeper truck.” It’s a motorhome built onto a large truck with a lot of horsepower. In general, people use the term to mean a medium to heavy duty truck (14,000 and up pounds GVWR) chassis.

Like this Paradise motor coach Freightliner, a lot of toters have a living quarters (couches and entertainment) right behind the truck cab. Then a kitchen, then sometimes a bathroom, then a bedroom.

Then behind all that they tow a standard 5th wheel trailer.

A lot of the ones you might have seen featured on Blogunity have luxury interiors — and some are custom luxury style exteriors, with a slide out unit or multiple slides.

For those not familiar with these Argosys, they’re made by Daimler Trucks North America and they’ve been producing the semi tractors since 1998. They come usually with Cummins 500, 530 or 600 or Series 60 470 or 500 engines. And mostly with 18-speed ultra-shift transmissions, from what I’ve read.

To visit Paradise Coach Interiors, (click here). For more about Argosys, click here. This high-quality photo (best viewed on a large screen) has some of the work Paradise Coach Interiors did on the inside of this Argosy:

A Luxury Diesel Pusher Motorhome

This Class A diesel motorhome is a big one. A 2015 Tiffin Motorhome’s vehicle that came up on the market a while ago. The actual model of this motorhome is a 37AP.

This type of big class A is perhaps most suited to those who have quite a bit of extra money and want to be mobile while being comfortable while they travel around in their home on wheels.

This Class A diesel pusher blends the two important things motorhome buyers look for often: luxury amenities and high quality, mixed with a sense that it’s their own space, their own “home-on-wheels.”

Motorhomes like this one have a lot of floor space, and that space as well as the hidden space (the compartments and storage areas under the coach, outside that skirt it, and in cabinets, maximize the space available. Motorhome owners might tell you, you can never have too much space.

In addition to the floor space, this luxury motorhome has a kitchen as equipped as you’d find in an apartment or even many houses, including a quick-heating cooktop that works with induction, a convection microwave, and enough counter space to prepare a meal for several people.

It also has large screen TVs, leather furniture, wood cabinetry, and ceiling lighting, as you can see in some of these photos of the diesel pusher RV. No price was listed for this used motorhome, but you an apply for a quote by visiting Coulton RVs (click here).

Tiny House on Wheels – Surprisingly Light and Airy Interior!

This tiny house on wheels has the distinction of being the “first legal tiny house in the Netherlands.” The owner actually not only lives in the tiny house, but also drives it around the country giving talks about living in a tiny home.

Tiny house living is also the subject of the owner’s website, Marjolein Jonker (Dutch language site), which talks about her life with her two cats in her tiny house.

The thing that you might notice about this tiny house though — looking at that picture above, it looks quite small, and like it might even be dark inside.

But actually, the light wood tones and white finish, as well as the interior layout, make this small house quite airy and light inside. There are actually a lot of windows to let in sunlight.

It was designed by Buro Walden, a Dutch designer, and built by Tiny-House.nl.

To see more of the Dutch builder’s work, find them in the Building Homes and Living directory.

Eco Home by Onix

This is one of the designs by prolific and creative design firm Onix, which does all kinds of structures, from small tiny houses and prefab homes to large public buildings, theatres, and you name it.

In 1994 in Groningen, Haiko Meijer and Alex established the architecture firm Onix, which is now well known for its unique, durable design and pure materials. For several years Onix has had a second office in Hersingborg, Sweden, as well.

Haiko Meijer indicated the basis of four designs and their inspiration from four countries a look in the kitchen design of Onix. This was the basis for a mixed composite house design: how Holland led to a barn house, Finland to a house “without end”, America to the house chimneys and Japan to a mini house.

For more of house design team Onix’s work, find them in the Building Homes and Living directory.

Small Architecture Inspired by the First Mobile Homes

The inspiration for this living space (? if it ends up being used as a living space — it’s just a design concept by Onix as far as I can tell) is the carriages that appeared in the heyday of Netherlandish country estates.

A carriage was furniture, vehicle, and architecture, according to the house design team. The carriage can be viewed as a cultivated farm cart, but actually it was the first home. The seating arrangements of two sofas facing each other stems specifically from the carriage era. Now in the current era this intimate arrangement is still used in train compartment and limousines.

Instead of a building in which a carriage is stored is the carriage house a folly reminiscent of a carriage. The contour, color, lifted, spring, romantic, intimate; all these elements have been incorporated into this design experiment. The carriage house can also be used as a pavilion in various ways for art, multi-media, theater and music events.

The banks are resiliently attached to the substrate and are integral with the increasing floor field, which can also function as a podium art. The windows at the front ends provide insight inward light in the interior, overlooking the beautiful park.

The exterior of the cottage is made of black stained wood, the inside is natural wood. As it brings the romance of yesteryear to life and carries her to the grave. Memento mori and carpe diem: the black death (well-preserved) wood on the outside, and the lively carved wood on the inside.

To see more of house design team Onix’s work, find them in the Building Homes and Living directory.

Onix Carriage House (5)

What do you think of this small house design?

What do you think of this small, but not tiny house, which stands out for the siding that carries all the way up the roof, as well as the simple overall structure complimented by the patterned exterior texture.

The structure includes Syberisch Larch rafters as a basic element. Furthermore, this small house is completely built of timber. External walls and roof are clad with western red cedar parts which will turn gray over time and thus will blend in even more with the surrounding beach grass. There are also large glass sections in the roof, which go over the wooden parts in movable blades, and which in the closed position seem to disappear in the lining of the roof. These design features for this small house are probably the ones that stand out the most upon first impression of the exterior. And these are all things that can also be added to a prefab house or modular house design — which is something we’ve been focusing on a lot lately, due to the inexpensive nature of prefab buildings.

At the level of the basement there are three bedrooms, a storage room, bathroom and a toilet. This floor can optionally be used separately from the parent spaces. On the ground floor is the living and sleeping area with surrounding terraces for morning and evening sun.

This small house is situated on the North Sea island of Terschelling, in the village of West aan Zee, Achterbosch Zantman has architects, hidden in the dunes, realized a recreation overlooking the North Sea. The basement is half hidden in the dunes, making the volume lost in the rolling countryside. The gable roof with its various levels of overhand — the way it seemingly curves on one side over the glazing and extends to the ground on the other side are also interesting design features.

The interior is light and spacious as the entire height of the living room has been kept open. The interior atmosphere is determined by the large glass surfaces and the variety of natural untreated wood and clean white walls and ceilings. Natural incidence of light can be manipulated by the opening or closing of the slats. The slats keep annoying sunlight. The large glass surfaces are diagonally glued under the overhangs and ensure an optimal experience of the surrounding dune landscape, the sky and the sea. An attic offers space for quiet reading spot and bookcase, and a crow’s nest overlooking the North Sea. To see more of AchterboschZantman’s work, find them in the Building Homes and Living directory.

Prefab Modular House Design

An interesting prefab design house design layout and an interesting location. It’s a prefab home designed by Room 11 and it’s situated on the island of Tasmania, which is south of the southeastern corner of Australia.

The prefab house design is influenced by the typology of the land around it. It’s set on a farm, and the angles and glass cut by strips of black metal keep the eye attentive.

Visitors enter through a covered doorway through the backyard and just after they experience the breadth of the main space with large windows and breathtaking view.

Photos by Ben Hosking. To see more work by the prefab house design team Room 11, find them in the Building Homes and Living directory.

Low Energy Prefab House

This prefab house design has been getting a bit of a buzz lately, although it’s just a design at this stage.

It’s called the Ekoart n.01, and it was designed by Slovenian brand Celovino.

Celovino didn’t elaborate on any of the details of this eco- prefab house. But you can probably tell from the photo above already that the most outstanding design feature is probably the symmetrical pattern. Although it is a corrugated-sheath and peaked roofed throughout, each side has an exposed timber framed area, which can be used as a porch (as it is on the one side) or a carpark (as it is on the other).

The symmetry is something like that seen on the face of a card, where the pattern is repeated and looks the same if turned upside down.

Interesting prefab design idea, anyway. What do you think? For more prefabs, find them in the Building Homes and Living directory.

ekoart prefab (1) ekoart prefab (1)

Montainer Shipping Container Homes

Cost-effective, eco-friendly, durable and speedy when it comes to construction sums up what shipping container homes represent for many home shoppers. These shipping containers are definitely useful as cargo containers that transport bulky stuff via ocean-going vessels or trains — usually internationally. But now these containers are being transformed into beautiful stylish abodes that bachelors, bachelorettes or families can enjoy dwelling in. Indeed, contemporary shipping container homes and other prefab or modular houses have become trendy and loved by many home owners … and designers, too.

These amazing projects are somewhat odd at first but when the construction is completed, they can be positively awesome. These shipping containers are sturdy so you don’t need to worry about having to fret when tornadoes hit your area. Also, they are fire-proof due to the non-flammable building material. Thus, they can minimize your worries which of course is a big reason why this type of project is worth considering.

Another good thing about shipping container homes is their affordability. Imagine saving about 20% for the materials of the house! You can use the savings to buy appliances. And how about saving time for its construction? It’s double savings – money and time. Plus it is definitely sustainable and uses less carbon print. It’s high time to protect the environment; hence, your ecological dwelling is a giant step to show your concern to the planet. All these practical reasons are appealing for your pocket, your family and the environment.

Here’s what I can share. A reliable firm offers impeccable home designs that will suit your needs. The Montainer team provides details on how the construction of the shipping container house will be. Their package is essentially practical for a functional house.

Standard amenities of their shipping containers include energy-driven baseboard, undercounter refrigerator, a water heater, flush mount lighting, TR and GFCI power outlets all over the house, bath sink, shower and toilet, kitchen cabinets and countertops, range and exhaust hood.

If you think you are ready for this type of amazing home project, then hit it and start enjoying what a sweet lovely home can offer. To see more of Montainer Homes’ work, find them in the Building Homes and Living directory.

How about this Prefab Home?

Prefab houses provide distinctive designs and structures to home owners with varying needs, styles, and preferences when it comes to selecting a starter, retirement or a second home. These kinds of houses allow people to find the right home for whatever their inclinations and tastes are, because prefab houses are a way to scale price, fit structures into unusual locations, and move the building if needed.

If you are the type of person who is sporty and wants to have a house that will reflect your personality, you may try to check out this prefab house being offered: the “Sport Prefab Home” by Pinc House.

The Sport Prefab Home is another distinctive and incredible design of the Swedish group who introduced the Prefab Barn House. The architectural style of the Sport Prefab Home is that of a contemporary Scandinavian lodge. It is designed to be a leisurely residential model. Sizes range from 20 to 160 square meters.

This house provides a spacious area having open plan interior and panoramic windows. As such, you can have a perfect view of the great scenery outside your home. Its interiors depict a northern influence touch – relaxing and airy.

The elements craftily put in this prefab house will certainly give you a breath-taking ambiance for you and your loved ones. Your dwelling is not just a basic home that provides you shelter; it is a great getaway that will make your living stylish and classy. To see more of Shipping Container House, find them in the Building Homes and Living directory.

Dream Playhouse

Food, shelter, and clothing are basic needs but did you know that playing is a basic natural drive and it is good in developing the brains? It is not just a petty fun activity; it is scientifically studied that playing can stir the growth of nerves in the brain that is responsible in decision-making and emotions of a person. Also, one’s imagination and visualization skills are enhanced.

Aside from mental benefits, it is good for physical health and social aspect of a person. While one plays, he uses his body actively by running or moving fast. Social life is also developed as one enjoys being with friends. Hence, installing a playhouse outdoors will bring utmost joy for your children.

Here is CedarWorks! They are pleased to bring more joyous childhood memories for your kids. They design playhouses more than aesthetics. Their products are functional, durable and provides full of fun.

Materials that are used are crack-free, chemical-free, upkeep-free Northern White Cedar for outdoors and fixtures while for indoors, they are made of cabinet grade multi-ply panels and water-based stains. These materials can withstand climate exposure unlike plastic playsets.

The playhouse can be set up in your front or back yard. This play set gives an extraordinary presence as well as a wonderful gift that kids can really enjoy. It is very delightful to watch your kids climb, slide, swing and run. What’s more amusing is the castle design playhouse. They can have role plays and act like princes and princesses. Fairy tales can be enjoyed not only on movies and books but in real play activities. These fun and recreational experiences would bring countless childhood merriments that parents should sincerely provide to their kids. To see more of CedarWorks work, find them in the Building Homes and Living directory.

Of course there are other designs, too. Take a look at some of the things people have had made:

Limitless Possibilities with Shipping Containers, Which Arrangement Would You Choose?

Prefab home options? How about the possibilities of structural arrangements using shipping container homes? Nowadays, life in terms of buying a first home has become different (and perhaps difficult) — living is not simply meeting the basics like food, clothing and shelter, but on the other hand, house prices continue to rise. The innovative mindsets of many individuals have moved the trend toward embracing new adventures and diversity — including prefab and modular homes. It’s no longer a culture of being a conformist to the various aspects of life and residential home design style. The generation today is ready to take up inventiveness which is manifested in opting for a shipping container as a house.

With this type of shipping container prefab house design –such as the designs by one company we found called the Montainer Process (a reputable firm that provides a stress-free approach to put up your home on your property) — home buyers can expect a process in which a design team personally works with them to come up with a home suitable for their budget, necessities and the requirements of the prefab building location (or locations, since prefab homes can be moved easily).

They have custom-made floor plans and 3D versions that will display the way your home will look like on your site. That way, home buyers can approach their home design in a mix and match way — offering limitless possibilities for design by arranging blocks of shipping containers or other prefab / modular elements.

At the onset, you will be given choices for the interior and exterior appearance of the prefab house, kitchen and bathroom packages, the type of windows and doors, the style of fixtures and finishes and all other details needed for your new lovely shipping container house.

The modular house is packaged with appliances and is set to be attached to your site’s accessible services. This arrangement will enable you to comfortably move to your new dwelling soon after the team has set up your home, while the set up time is often quick compared with conventional home construction as well.

Regular amenities of a shipping container house are power-driven baseboard and water heater, undercounter fridge, ceiling lights, TR & GFCI electrical outlets all over the unit, bath sink, shower and lavatory, pantry closets and countertops, stove and exhaust hood.

There are usually extra amenities offered as options by prefab design companies. Home owners may take them according to their specific needs. The add-ons for this type of shipping container home include a washing machine with a dryer, advanced heating and cooling system, built-in dishwashers, full size fridge and freezer, tile shower and panelling, full range and oven. Most of these are good as options, because people looking to save can often find these items second-hand as well.

As Montainer homes are designed with international building code compliance, licensed in both state and local level, inspected and permitted. As such, you are assured that your house will be approved. The team is responsible for confirming your site’s settings and permit and they will provide you the total cost.

As soon as your necessary documents have been permitted, the labor force will then start their excavation. They will also process the connection to existing utilities and setting up of your plotted grounds while your house is built in the company’s facility.

When your site is ready and your home has been approved in its last assessment, the company will then transport it to your site. To see more of Montainer Homes work, find them in the Building Homes and Living directory.

Here are some more shipping container layouts, some designs, and some finished buildings. They go from the simple and utilitarian to the complex and luxurious to stylish modern to just wacky.

Metal Building Cottage House For Couple or Mid-Sized Family

A lot of people are increasingly turning to alternative building methods, including metal buildings. Due to the strength, ecological friendliness, and cost effectiveness of metal as a building material, it’s a staple for architects, engineers and house builders.

Another big benefit: re-use. With metal buildings, they can be expanded, made smaller, and combined with other structures — and often the update is easier than it would be for other materials.

This lovely dwelling featured here is one that, due to the size and layout, could be ideal for couples and mid-sized families. It is a two-story house with nice hotel-suite style bedrooms and bathrooms. It has a fully functional kitchen and other home amenities, although besides the standard house appliances, many amenities are options that can be selected or ruled out depending on what a metal house buyer needs and wants. It also has a wheeled staircase for easy mobility that provides access to the second floor.

The metal building also has a garage which measures 452 square feet and the whole house measures 1650 square feet.

It might be worth taking a look at the architects behind this building as well as a few others to get a feel for what is possible with metal home construction. The company behind this particular design is Click Architects (Cheryl and Steve Click), who are licenced in Arkansas and Washington. We also have a number of other metal home builders and designers indexed in our directory, depending on where you live.

“Click Architects is a design-focused architecture firm specializing in new and remodels for single family residences, small multi-family, commercial buildings, and tenant improvement projects,” according to the company. “Every project at Click Architects starts with a holistic approach; analyzing site constraints, regional and vernacular influences, programmatic elements, budget limitations, and clients’ needs. This provides a solid background necessary to start designing the unthinkable.

“Guided by our passion for excellence and our love for collaboration, each unique project is molded according to the vision, site, and desire from the client. We believe good design is sustainable and a reflection of the community and environment around us.”

For more information about building with steel, check out 7 Essential Things To Know About Beautiful Metal Buildings. Or you can browse our site to get a better feel for the range of metal home buildings out there. To see more of Click Architects work, find them in the Building Homes and Living directory.

Wow! A Custom Semi Pulling a Luxury Fifth Wheel

Fifth wheel trailers behind semi tractors. Not something you see every day already, but then you see a custom semi and a matching luxury fifth wheel like this. So a while ago we posted a write up on a very long fifth wheel trailer (which is still the matter of some debate, with some people saying its the longest, some saying it must be shopped, but we’re waiting until we see all the evidence until we make a final call on it and post the answer [with evidence either way]). But one of the Plains Trains page members who responded to it shared his own custom semi truck and fifth wheel trailer combo: this one in the pictures. It’s Michael Atwoods’ lime green Peterbilt.

While you may have seen this custom machine pulling reefer trailers elsewhere, here Michael showed it doing a recreational run! It’s got one of those luxury trailers known as “Voltage” fifth wheels on the back. I’ve seen these fifth wheel trailers here and there, and they are popular. They have a distinct “sport” sense about them.

So if this is a question that can even be answered, is the custom semi tractor nicer, or the luxury RV trailer? well, that might depend on if you’re an owner-operator or semi driver, or if you’re an RV fanatic.

One thing you might have noticed. That custom tractor looks stretched out pretty far, which is a popular way of customizing these things with a lot of people.

However, as Leigh Paré pointed out, the wheelbase isn’t actually as along as it might appear at first, because the Peterbilt has a smaller sleeper on it, and that combined with the tanks on it make it look longer — interesting style thing to know, too — and if you put a big custom studio sleeper on it, like an ARI sleeper or something, maybe a 70 incher or so, it would look less stretched.

There were some price guesses on this rig. Not sure if Michael wants to tell it, but the guesses were from $104,000 to around $300,000. Maybe people will weigh in on the price of the custom tractor job and the price of the luxury trailer RV separately, and we can add them up.

Oh, and for those wondering about licencing requirements, we were lucky enough on the Plains Trains page to hear from an expert, Robert Hornstra: “I’m an RV tech with a copy of the building code, there is no requirement for second exit over a certain length. Don’t think the powers thought that far along.” So people who want to tow a fifth wheeler like this can do so.

Nice one, Michael! and thanks everyone for your comments, as always. Here’s a few more similar builds and combos. Is that the same green machine there, at a different phase?

Here’s The NEW Longest Semi Tractor Made

One of the favorite giant semi sleeper tractors (of all time, probably) is Tony Bennett’s old bright yellow one that was running for Southern Pride trucking. Owner-operators and truck drivers everywhere have appreciated this truck, and one of the interesting things about it is it was the longest factory-made truck.

But now there’s a new longest factory made truck, by the looks of things. This one comes to us from Ron Arguin, a member of the Plains Trains page who wanted us to all know about this big custom sleeper semi model being put out now.

According to Ron, this big red sleeper semi is the biggest to come out of ARI. It’s a 260″ bunk on a 410 wheelbase. The big yellow Southern Pride truck was a 385 wheelbase with a 205 inch Double Eagle studio sleeper unit on it. So the math checks out.

So this big tractor (photo above) is a Landstar Kenoworth T880.

It was built by ARI sleepers for a couple, Larry and Sarah, at Ft Wayne Truck Center. The paint is Candy Apple Red painted by CRS Custom Paint.

With a big semi sleeper unit like this, how long could you stay on the road before having to return back, long-haul drivers? Or maybe this is a question that can even go to the RVers out there? How does a 260 inch bunk compare with a luxury motorhome, fifth wheeler or toy hauler?

I haven’t found any more pictures of this huge 260 bunk / 410 wheelbase sleeper unit, but here’s similar ones also by ARI. Just a bit smaller, which no doubt will suit some of you all better, since a lot of people like to get custom sleeper units but not everyone wants to go full on apartment on wheels: One’s a ARI 168 Inch Legacy II RBSD Custom Sleeper with 332 Inch WB, and the other is 156 / 218.

Prefab Luxury Design and Without the Luxury Price

If you can see yourself in a prefab house like this one (whether on or off grid), you might not have to pay a luxury home price, according to MEKA, the modular designer.

Their modular home construction is based on shipping container frames and wood paneling.

Their idea is that shipping container buildings aren’t idea because of the metal panels, while the use of shipping container steel frames (no walls on them) are good for both shipping (and transporting modular homes) AND living in (because of the benefits of wood walls).

MEKA has been around since 2009 and is a team of architects and engineers who are tryiing to create both living and working spaces based on modular construction design, which can be shipped worldwide to prefab buyers.

Among the benefits of their company are that everything they ship — each modular unit — can be transported anywhere around the world by ship, rail or semi truck because they all conform to ISO shipping container parameters, they maximize functionality of the space provided in their designs, and they consider local building codes so their prefabs can be permanently installed, according to MEKA. The house pictured is available for around $128,000, and they have many smaller options, which go down in price to $39,000. TO see more of their work, find them in the Building Homes and Living directory.

BkM 170806


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Never Seen a Motorhome Like This Motorhome!

Have you ever seen a motorhome like this motorhome? Since we’ve been looking a lot at Prevosts and other North American luxury coaches, we haven’t seen any that look like this. That’s because this is a European truck made by Scania.

The motorhome interior has plush leather couches, one is a seating area with an angular counch that folds into a bed and has a cooler fridge drawer under it, and the other a long straight couch that also folds out.

Above the cockpit, this motor home has an overcab bed, which has both lights and windows at both ends.

The kithen area has a fridge, a wine cooler, a microwave, freezer, hot plate, and lots of counter top space for food preparation.

It also has a flatscreen TV above the kitchen area.

In a cupboard in the kitchen area, 5 remote controls are located for the motor coach’s electronics.

The motorhome also has a luxury bathroom with shower.

The steering wheel is on the right-hand side though, because its a Scania truck. The seats have air suspension.

This version of the motorhome also has a horse section in the rear, but of course if you didn’t want to bring your horses, a person could have that rear space converted into a bedroom or toy hauler garage.

The price for this type of Scania motor home horse-home is around $500,000 to a million for a new one, and used luxury RVs really vary in price. This particular motorhome was recently reviewed by Practical Motorhome’s Andy Harris (visit them click here).

Motorhome interior, and some other Scania motorhomes, to give an idea of the range of what these things look like:

You’ve Seen Tiny Houses … Now It’s a Tiny Personal Houseboat!

How many people out there, whether you’re interested in prefab houses or you’re part of the tiny homes movement or what, have thought about ever taking a cruise (is that the right word) in a houseboat?

A designer named Marjin Beije might have an option for tiny house shoppers who have access to a plot of water, and who like the idea of being surrounded by water all the time — a tiny houseboat.

Yes, it’s a floating tiny home big enough for two rooms and a deck between the two. One side is an interesting bathroom construction, walled by thin wooden slats and leaving only a counter/sink and faucet for washing, as well as the enclosed toilet.

There’s windows on this bathroom area as well as the sleeping area.

One thing that might not make everyone happy to hear. For the sake of simplicity, everything from the sinks and elsewhere just drains down, although I guess you could rig something up like other tiny homes and prefab modular houses have for waste removal.

I left one thing out: there’s a sundeck on top with a diving platform at the very top, so tiny house dwellers can take a dive into their yard — or lake!

Canadian Banks Asked to Test for 50% Drop in Vancouver House Prices

What would happen to Canadian banks if there was global financial meltdown, or if Canada experienced a significant recession or interest rates shot up?

In Canada, the banks are required by the government (Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions http://www.osfi-bsif.gc.ca/) to run annual “stress tests” to make sure they could weather worst-case scenarios intact.

Previously, banks were asked to test for a 30 percent drop in house prices, just in case, but this year there is a change.

While the rest of Canada is still going to be tested at 30 percent, Vancouver will be tested for a 50 percent decline in house prices and Toronto for a 40 percent drop.


The two cities in question are also the ones most affected by immigrant and foreign investors, mostly from China, where home prices have been driven up to levels commonly referred to as causing a “housing crisis”, price points that exclude almost all Canadians. Over much of the rest of Canada, where immigration levels are not significant and foreign investment is low, house prices are not rising in any significant degree.

Learning Videos

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Net-zero Arc Prefab House

Prefab houses that take imaginative approaches to design are irresistibly interesting! The amazingly roomy Net-Zero Arc House reveals how curves can create an illusionary feel – a small space seems much larger. Innovatively and creatively designed by a group effort involving Green Builder Media, Shelter Dynamics, Kitcheneering, and Align3D, this prefab house is a good blend of the frugality and minimalism of micro house living with revolutionary structure science.

This fabulous Arc House ranges from 400 to 500 square feet. It is a good size for starting families and is designed for those who consider the importance of flexibility and affordability. It abides by California’s factory prefabricated codes. This house has all the facilities of standard-sized homes. At the same time, it’s self-contained and compact; the house incorporates several sustainable essentials into a single set.

This micro prefab home is off-grid: it is a solar powered abode with advanced protection and energy storage capacity. It has a great purpose-built kitchen and a sleeping quarters with a walk-in closet. Thus, Arc Home features both the functionality and aesthetics that home buyers are yearning for.

Also, its amazing shape is absolutely eye-catching and provides a spectacular artistic view. Who didn’t notice the strikingly unusual appearance of this home when they passed their eyes over it?

The founder of Shelter Dynamics, Jim Gregory said that Arc House is a lovely house design which helped them in demonstrating their proficiency in designing and building prefab modular homes that are sustainable and meet the standard of a regular homes while keeping within an affordable budget. To see more of Shelter Dynamics’ work, find them in the Building Homes and Living directory.


Steel Frame Gambrel Homes Starting from $19,950

Big houses can accommodate more people and provide enough space for families to live, play, eat and conduct the gamut of fun family-and-friends’activities. That’s why big sized homes still entice home owners to dream about owning one. But because of their daunting price tags, not everyone who dreams this can make it into a reality. However, there are other construction options, such as looking into several firms that offer astounding steel frame gambrel-style metal building homes that fit the checkbooks of those who have a smaller budget. This house also requires lower maintenance as the Gambrel style design was originally used for barns. The aesthetic minds of the interior and exterior designers have made this traditional pattern into an extraordinary and elegant metal house that many would really love.

This lovely steel home was created by renowned home builders Ameri Built Steel. Starting $19,950, the whole family can be accommodated in this type of inexpensive prefab house.

When you enter this house, you can enjoy the stress-free and calm ambiance created by its wooden interior walls — yes, although the exterior is strong metal, the inside can be finished with wood paneling (picture below).

The living room is large and cool so you don’t necessarily need an air-conditioning unit. The customized wood kitchen is definitely fantastic and it is a great area for meal preparations. It is very inspiring to prepare food in a place where your creative juices for the culinary are flowing due to a beautiful and well-organized setting. Upstairs, you can utilize the space for fun indoor games and it is also a nice place for a home office for online professionals. And with its steel frame design, you are assured that you are living in a sturdy home.

These delightful houses built by AmeriBuilt Steel and other steel construction suppliers come in various sizes and designs that can fit many home buyers’ preferences. I can really say that every occasion will be extra special when it is celebrated in any of these gorgeous houses. Imagine how comfortable your friends and visitors will be if they are accommodated well because there’s enough space to move and walk around plus the superb interiors set a stress-free atmosphere that every busy individual will really appreciate — one reason a home buyer might consider an inexpensive steel building over more more expensive option that might limit the size of the structure. You can see more of AmeriBuilt’s metal home designs in the Building Homes and Living directory.

A New Kind of Tiny House Cabin

After a hard busy day, practically everyone wants to find solace in a comfortable home — and one option to have a comfortable home affordably is prefab or modular construction. At its base, a home is a space for each individual or family, and inexpensive prefabs are meant to provide some comfort and a sense of ownership to people buying their first house on a budget. Small cabin homes are really charming and many home buyers are considering acquiring one like this.

In Lac Supérieur, located outside Montreal, the Fraternité-sur-Lac recreational spot is home to a chain of contemporary, prefabricated houses beautifully designed by YH2. YH2 recreated an outdated model of a cabin and presented a series of stunning and elegant tiny cabin homes that are delightful design-wise.

Another incredible house creation is their “Spahaus” cabin, located in Canada. It has an open-plan living space. It was designed as nice holiday dwelling. The 21 cabins built with this plan are fashioned to make the most of the area’s natural scenery. Thus, the cabins have large windows that allow house dwellers to enjoy a good view of the forest.

House buyers can choose one among five Spahaus models. House sizes range from 1070 square feet to 1420 square feet. The kitchen has gray laminate cupboards and stainless steel countertops.

Home buyers may also go for the sauna optional feature if they love a warm bath. The houses’ interior and exterior follow a regular graphical theme and a cedar and concrete are arranged to create a strong visual effect.

The frontage is made up of of bare concrete — which seems to be a divisive design choice, some people really like exposed concrete and others don’t — Galvalume guttering, and cedar wood sheathing. The prefab homes are carefully set up to make other parts of the constrution invisible.

Home buyers are practically guaranteed to feel at home in this type of cabin home. To see more of YH2 Architecture’s work, find them in the Building Homes and Living directory. Photos by  Julien Perron-Gagné.

A Nice Rustic Modular Home Design

For those of you exploring the options in modular home design styles and plans, you might want to take a look at this one. The entire prefab house is pretty much surfaced with 2×4 wood, and to a nice effect. Very woodsy, yet very clean rustic modular design.

This modular was designed by BIO architects to be transport-ready and installed on site in one day. The design is comprised of two modules with a central insert which creates two separate rooms, and the overall height is over 3 meters. There are a large number of options for the modular home interior. The design also shows an aesthetic principle of openness on the side of the main facade (all those windows in the photo above).

And it has a large terrace where guests can spend time in the summer (also in top photo).

These designers are out in Russia — their called the BIO architects, and it’s a fellow named Ivan Ovchinnikov behind the modular home design here. The prefab structure is called the DublDom-40 (which translates to Double House 40) (click here for their website — not in English though).

The total area of this modular home is 40 meters square. So if you’re in Russia you could look into these guys. But I know most of you are not. I posted this one for you all mostly because it was a nicely presented small – medium sized modular home with a rustic cabin sensibility. You might want to check out some North American or European prefab home builders to if they have something similar.




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VR: VR’s Grand Challenge: Michael Abrash on the Future of Human Interaction,

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READS: Bill of Rights (US) – Anarchist’s Cookbook – Preface to Transgression

VIDEOS: The Birth of a Tool, The Birth of a Wooden House, Basque Axes,

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