A Tiny Cabin Is Built in Three Weeks For Only $10.5K

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By Michele Koh Morollo
A young Finnish designer bypasses building permits by creating an affordable tiny home under 100 square feet.

In Finland, houses with a floor area between 96 to 128 square feet do not require a building permit, so when local industrial designer Robin Falck decided to build his own cabin in the picturesque municipality of Sipoo, he made sure to keep the tiny home under 100 square feet. 

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The color scheme for the interiors are inspired by the color of a large boulder near the site.

The color scheme for the interiors are inspired by the color of a large boulder near the site.

"In 2010, I wanted to build a place of my own. I found this beautiful plot and I set out to design a compact getaway for myself. I also wanted to maximize this small space, use local, recycled materials, and build it myself," explains Falck, who named the cabin Nido, which translates to "bird's nest" in Italian. 

While Falck built most of the tiny home himself, he hired a local carpenter to build the window frame and door. 

While Falck built most of the tiny home himself, he hired a local carpenter to build the window frame and door. 

Not only was Falck able to save on the cost of the building permit, he also found recycled materials, which he used for the bulk of the construction. This further reduced his expenditure on the project, and the total cost for the Nido cabin was just around $10,500.

Adjacent to the cabin is a spacious deck that is raised above the ground on wooden stilts.

Adjacent to the cabin is a spacious deck that is raised above the ground on wooden stilts.

Above the living lounge, the 50-square-foot loft faces a window that frames striking views of the tree canopies.

Above the living lounge, the 50-square-foot loft faces a window that frames striking views of the tree canopies.

Most of the building materials were carried by hand to the site to avoid damaging the natural landscape.

Most of the building materials were carried by hand to the site to avoid damaging the natural landscape.

On the lower level is the living lounge where Falck can relax and look out at nature through a massive window that is spread across the two floors.

On the lower level is the living lounge where Falck can relax and look out at nature through a massive window that is spread across the two floors.

The window looks out to views across the lake, while also bringing in sunlight to help brighten the interiors.  

The window looks out to views across the lake, while also bringing in sunlight to help brighten the interiors.  

Falck designed the cabin to maximize space and improve acoustics and light flow.

Falck designed the cabin to maximize space and improve acoustics and light flow.

Sticking with the essentials and eliminating all unnecessary elements, Falck created a floor plan that includes a lower level and a sleeping loft. The loft has just enough room for a bed and storage for his clothes.

Sticking with the essentials and eliminating all unnecessary elements, Falck created a floor plan that includes a lower level and a sleeping loft. The loft has just enough room for a bed and storage for his clothes.

A look at the Nido cabin floor plan.

A look at the Nido cabin floor plan.

Falck has also designed the 97-square-foot Nolla Cabin, an affordable, eco-friendly vacation rental off the coast of Helsinki.

Project Credits: 

 Architect: Robin Falck; @robinfalck

Builder: Robin Falck and Sverre Falck