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This Olympic Peninsula Yurt is the Original Mobile Home

Welcome to Tiny Homes, an idea that is more popular with minimalists than with neighborhood associations and zoning boards. We'll point out the fun parts. You'll have to check out the logistics and legalities - and find a big round place to put it.


Some words are just fun to say. Say yurt. Yurt. Yurt. Yurt. Live in a yurt and you'll have lots to talk about at parties. There's a yurt for sale (there's always a yurt for sale) in Port Orchard. It's already knocked down and ready for you to haul away. Yurts are one of the few ways to buy a place for less than $30 per square foot. This one is 452 square feet for $11,500. All you have to do is find a place to put it.

Compared to yurts, suburban ramblers are a fad. Yurts have been around for thousands of years. They've weathered Mongolian winters. They survived and housed herds of Mongols. You could live like a Khan (not the one from Star Trek). Yurts were also mobile. Nomads move, and their houses had to be able to get knocked down, dragged along, then put back up again. Consider yourself lucky. You get to use a lot more horsepower for the move.

Yurts are round, so there's nothing square about the square feet. They're also open. They don't need interior walls, so that's up to you. It is a very free form life as you try to decide how to handle the bedroom, kitchen, and bathroom arrangements. Life was different when everything centered around a dung-fueled stove. You'll have more options like propane, electricity, and running water. Need privacy? Put up a curtain. Don't like the layout? Move the curtains. Want to hang some art? Tapestries were popular back then.

This yurt includes the furnace and insulation, but not the floor. That's an uncommon sales feature. But, you have to either build a platform or set it on dirt, anyway. Setting it on a platform makes it easier to bring in utilities, just like in modern houses. Also included is the knowledge that it doesn't take long to assemble. Few house construction projects go together as quickly as a yurt. If you've got the space, the money, and the inclination, it can probably be erected in a few days, including the utilities and such.

Putting up a 24 foot diameter domed tent may require some negotiations with the neighbors and regulators. Yurts have a small foot print; but the square footage may be outside local code. Of course, a Mongol Khan would scoff at such a consideration. Yurts, homes with attitude.
· Port Orchard Yurt [THL]
· All Tiny Homes coverage [CS]
Written by Tom Trimbath