So, what are the most important features of a tiny home, is it the kitchen, the sleeping areas, the living area, the bathroom, the windows, does it have a porch or not or the roof? This week I want to discuss the Kitchen design: In the coming weeks, I am going to be writing about these areas individually.
Design of Tiny Home Kitchens
So, what features of a kitchen would you want in your custom Tiny Home or where would you want it laid out? Let us look, most of us are familiar with seeing the tiny homes that have the kitchen in the middle or on one end of the trailer, what are
the pros and cons of this?
From a, pro point of view having the kitchen in the middle opens more room on the other ends especially in living room area/ for larger furniture or desk/working area in addition to loft above if done right and will make a hallway that is easier to navigate when walking back and forth thru center of trailer. Kitchens in tiny homes are usually built on the driver’s side because the gray water storage tanks needed are set inline below subfloor kitchen cabinets that connect to plumbing and are close to water access panel and pump drain up by the utility drivers side. With proper cabinet design and measurement, you can have adequate cabinet storage and consider things like in-drawer dishwashers, wine coolers or washer and dryers.
The con on this is that if you really want a large kitchen then the middle of the tiny home may not be where you want it located?
But let’s say you like to cook and the larger kitchen is a bigger value to you as a feature in your tiny home design. Then having it designed so it is in the rear will allow you to have an L-shaped or U-shaped kitchen, possibly with a breakfast bar/seating area? With this option, you can have counters on either side of you with the sink located in the back or side with accompanying windows to view outside and allow light in. For the builders, they have additional buildout for plumbing and will need to relocate a gray water tank underneath the sink area, so some design work will be needed and this may cost a little more. This opens more space for addition base and upper cabinets with additions for wine cabinet nooks, or exposed plate and dish racks etc., with more counter space and allows the chef his/her domain.
What about cons to doing this, the primary one, is that when you design the kitchen on the back portion of trailer you then shift more weight to the rear and this puts more lift on the front tongue when towing, so you could end up towing a trailer where you have what are called dolphining conditions where the trailer when it hits a bump in the road it may start to rise and fall as its being towed. Some of the ways to overcome this are to use a weight distribution kit or hire a professional transportation company whose hitch is designed and rated for the weight capacity of your trailer. Another option which should only be discussed with a transport company, could you use 4-5 bags of peat moss/soil/sand or mulch to help offset this in the front, possibly? Could you then use that at your end destination to make a garden? (Dan Cartagena, Owner/Operator of Warrior Transport a professional transport company who’s moved hundreds of tiny homes sites an example where he had tiny home that had the kitchen and the bathroom built on the rear on a cross-country trip to California, he had to stop early on to purchase a bucket which he then filled with 5-6 bags of 100-pound sand and placed it up front to offset and stabilize the trailer.)
So, reviewing this you can really customize your kitchen so it looks like a modern luxury residential home, it’s just deciding what’s important to you and where do you spend more time? If it’s not cooking, then having the kitchen in the middle opens the back area for more living space with furniture. Sea to Sea Homes can design the kitchen where you want it.
We will be doing a drawing on May 31, 2017, for a free tiny home kitchen design.