Compact guest cottage in Portland | Dyer Studio
Living in a one-bedroom bungalow, Stephanie and Sam Dyer didn’t have much room for overnight guests and couldn’t offer them any privacy. With both sets of parents making regular extended visits, they decided to build a compact guest house in their Portland, Oregon, backyard. Besides providing space to accommodate guests, they looked at it as an investment that could generate income as a vacation rental when their parents weren’t staying there.
Stephanie, an interior designer and product developer, designed the cottage as well as the tile you can see throughout. The tiny house has 342 ft2 (31.8 m2) over its two floors. Portland’s accessory dwelling unit regulations would have permitted them to build bigger but Stephanie and Sam wanted to preserve their garden space and large cherry tree, so they kept the footprint as small as possible.
Because the guest house sits only a couple feet from their side property line, Stephanie put the stairs and utilities on that side, avoiding any windows overlooking the neighbor’s yard. Plenty of windows on the other sides, along with a couple of skylights, bring in abundant daylight and allow for natural ventilation.
The lower floor is one room with a gas fireplace near the front door, a built-in dining nook, and the kitchen in the back. The dining nook can be converted into a queen-sized bed when more sleeping space is needed, and drawers below provide a bit of added storage. A second door near the kitchen leads out to the garden.
The upper level is slightly smaller than the ground floor. A double-height opening was left near the front door so that heat from the fireplace can rise up to the bedroom, assisted by a ceiling fan if necessary. Like the dining nook below, the bed was placed within a small bumpout with windows on three sides giving a view of the garden. The bathroom and a laundry closet are also on the second floor.
Planning to visit Portland? When their parents aren’t using the guest cottage, Stephanie and Sam rent it to vacationers through VRBO.
Enjoy the photos and the weekend!
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