Design your life to include more money, health and happiness with less stuff, space and energy.

Design your life to include more money, health and happiness with less stuff, space and energy.

Small, Stylish Home Takes Over Garage

We’ve expressed our love of the accessory dwelling unit (ADU) in the past. To us, they represent a great solution for adding density to more spread-out, car-intensive, suburban areas–a vitally important conversation in the micro-housing world. We ran across this little Portland ADU on Tiny House Talk, which to us demonstrates how nice these little places can be. The 508 sq ft home, dubbed PDX Eco Cottage (not to be confused with the workout routine) began its life as a garage. With the help of Jack Barnes Architect, owner Susan Moray converted the space into a very stylish, usable, sustainable home.

The house features a full kitchen, bathroom and separate bedroom. It achieved an Earth Advantage Platinum certification, a point system that evaluates a home’s indoor air quality, responsible use of natural resources, land protection and low water usage. The whole project cost $110K plus quite a bit of Susan’s labor, according to Jack Barnes. While not necessarily cheap, it’s less expensive than comparable quality homes in the area (the cheapest thing we could find was $444K, though it was much larger).

Susan built the home using Portland’s new short term rental permit for ADUs and you can stay at the place as a vacation rental. She told us that she built the cottage with the idea of living there when she’s older, with her daughter living in the front house where she currently resides. The home seems more than adequate for full time residency and we hope places like this start punctuating suburban landscapes, providing sensible housing in otherwise underutilized spaces.

Via Tiny House Talk

  • Gm.

    Portland! Thank you for this, David. As an aside, am wondering who manufactured Susan’s fridge. Great color. Any insight on that? Thank you.

    • Hi Gm, the fridge is by SMEG, check out for more.