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Boulder House Treads Lightly

It’s one thing to leave a small footprint by shunning the McMansions of the 90s and early 2000s by occupying a smaller dwelling. But one Boulder couple took the small-house trend to the extreme.

Christopher Smith and Merete Mueller built a 125-square-foot home.

Not only is the size environmentally friendly, the couple built it using reclaimed windows, beetle-kill lumber, solar power and a composting toilet that contains peat moss and saw dust.

“You’d be surprised how well it works and how much it doesn’t smell,” Mr. Smith told Denver’s ABC 7 News.

So what can you fit in a space that 19-feet long, wall-to-wall? A sitting area, a kitchen, a bathroom and a sleeping loft that can accommodate a queen-size mattress.

The Boulder couple is part of a growing movement of small-home dwellers. The web site

features the tiny homes of other environmentally-conscious people like a man who built a 400-square-foot cabin for less than $2,000. Roof-top solar panels and a small wind turbine provide all the electricity, including the water pump, lights and computer. A propane tank that provides back-up energy for the furnace and stove saves money. His water comes from a well he drilled himself, while rainwater that he collects provides water for gardening. He raises chickens, rabbits and tends fruit trees. He has no house payments or utility bills.

A documentary called “Tiny: A Story About Living Small“, scheduled for release this spring, will feature the Boulder couple’s home and others like it.

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