About this item

From the publishers of a popular series of building books comes Small Homes, which is highly relevant for these times -- getting smaller, rather than larger. Some 75 builders share their knowledge of building and design, with artistic, practical, and/or economical homes in the United States, Canada, England, Scotland, France, Germany, Spain, New Zealand, and Lithuania. The average American home is 2, 500 sq. ft. The tiny home averages 200-300 sq. ft. The small homes here are 400-1200 sq. ft. -- the middle ground -- not too big, not too small (a la Goldilocks) . Compared to the average American home, small homes are less expensive, use less resources, are more efficient to heat and cool, and cheaper to maintain and repair. Compared to tiny homes, they offer a lot more space and breathing room.



About the Author

Lloyd Kahn

I started building almost 50 years ago, and have lived in a self-built home ever since. If I'd been able to buy a wonderful old good-feeling house, I might have never started building. But it was always cheaper to build than to buy, and by build-ing myself, I could design what I wanted and use materials I wanted to live with.

I set off to learn the art of building in 1960. I liked the whole process immensely. Hammering nails. Framing - delineating space. Nailing down the sub-floor, the roof decking. It's a thrill when you first step on the floor you've just created.

Ideally I'd have worked with a master carpenter long enough to learn the basics, but there was never time. I learned from friends and books and by blundering my way into a process that required a certain amount of competence. My perspective was that of a novice, a homeowner - rather than a pro. As I learned, I felt that I could tell others how to build, or at least get them started on the path to creating their own homes.

Through the years I've personally gone from post and beam to geodesic domes to stud frame construction. It's been a constant learning process, and this has led me into investigating many methods of construction - I'm interested in them all. For five years, the late '60s to early '70s, I built geodesic domes. I got into being a publisher by producing Domebook One in 1970 and Domebook 2 in 1971.

I then gave up on domes (as homes) and published our namesake Shelter in 1973. We've published books on a variety of subjects over the years, and returned to our roots with Home Work: Handbuilt Shelter in 2004, The Barefoot Architect in 2008, Builders of the Pacific Coast in 2008, and Tiny Homes: Simple Shelter in 2012.

Building is my favorite subject. Even in this day and age, building a house with your own hands can save you a ton of money (I've never had a mortgage) and - if you follow it through - you can get what you want in a home.



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