- An Estonian design firm built a floating home that can be recycled and put together (or taken apart) in a single day.
- The home is built to last 50 years and be easily transported from one location to the next.
- With its minimalist aesthetic and compact space, the home is intended for nomads who prefer to live with less.
- It could also allow people to pick up and go in the event of a climate-related disaster.
Recent years have ushered in the rise of digital nomads who conduct business out of restaurants, cafés, and subway cars instead of homes and offices.
But even a nomad needs somewhere to rest their head occasionally – a place they can consider, if not a home, a home base.
Kodasema, an Estonian design firm, develops tiny homes that move with their owners and can be assembled and taken apart in one day, allowing them to easily be transported.
This is useful for more than just wandering freelancers – faced with rising sea levels or a hurricane, residents ostensibly could move their home to a safer location.
The firm’s latest model, a 278-square-foot structure that sits on a floating pontoon, can be built on both water and land. Take a look at its sleek, minimalist design.
Kodasema hopes to capitalise on what it sees as a growing trend of people downsizing to smaller, accessible spaces.
The firm’s designer, Ülar Mark, said that while people in Spain, France, and the UK have traded mansions for traditional homes and apartments, the 2,000-square-foot apartment awaits the same destiny, soon to be swapped for even tinier spaces.
The public might be ready for tiny living, but the construction industry has lagged behind.
The concept of a floating tiny home is a bit ahead of its time, said Birgit Linnamäe, the firm’s CEO.
“The whole construction and housing industry has become too rigid,” she told Business Insider. “The legislative settings for floating homes in different European countries are not quite in place.”
The company wants to take matters into its own hands by producing homes designed for the masses.
Mark said he envisioned the homes being manufactured in bulk, like cars. The design, he said, is a blank canvas on which people can project their taste.
The company has built an entire village of tiny homes in Estonia and is putting the finishing touches on Koda Park, a mixed-use community with its own solar technology and wastewater-treatment system.
Linnamäe said the development, which can be built on vacant lots, doesn’t require heavy permitting.
Kodasema’s floating model starts at $US55,000, but the price varies depending on the materials, hardware, and location.
The company’s original model, Koda, was made of heavy concrete that weighed about 30 tons. The price of that home, including installation and delivery, was about $US150,000.
Kodasema has since introduced lighter materials like timber and plywood that can be recycled and last 50 years. Linnamäe said the company was on its way to building homes that start at $US20,000.
The company said the floating home feels like a “Mediterranean villa.”
In less than 280 square feet, residents have a kitchen, a living room, a bedroom, and a bathroom.
Since the model can be built on land, it could also function as a café, a hotel, or a small business, like an artist’s studio.
Mark said most people see it as a living unit.
The company has garnered interest from around the world in places like the Gulf, New Zealand, Africa, and North and South America and has delivered models in Norway, Germany, and the UK.
Mark said the home’s minimalist aesthetic catered to a growing trend of prioritising experiences over material goods.
“The design task was to take off everything that’s not needed,” Mark told Business Insider. The company thinks the idea will resonate with people looking to explore a new way of living.