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Meet 'El Greco Gecko,' the Tiny Seattle Houseboat Asking $55K

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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 - but this one's been floating in at dock long enough that it looks like it's found a good home.


The name must be worth something; El Grecko Gecko. What's the story behind that? For $55,000 you can find out by buying this tiny houseboat that's moored on Lake Union. People living in small houses may think it's too small. People living in Tiny Houses, may think it is palatial. Perspective matters when you're looking at 200 square feet. It might be just the right size for 1 bedroom, 1 bath, and iconic Seattle housing, especially at that price.

Liveaboards lived in tiny spaces before they were popular. A lot of what makes Tiny Houses work is the same design philosophy that goes into living aboard a boat: every space is used efficiently, less is dramatically more, too much is a possible catastrophe, and materials matter. Everything has to be compact, unobtrusive, and able to survive high humidity and the equivalent of continual slow earthquakes. Sounds like a good design basis for building and living in Seattle.

Welcome to the tiny version of an upscale house: the dining area in natural wood with an ocean view for two; a kitchen designed for an efficient chef where everything is within arm's reach; the fine sitting area defined by a singular piece of furniture, in this case a futon couch; intricate tile work on the shower wall and ceiling; a sunny mural for the rainy days; and the ultimate no-mow maintenance, unless you count cleaning seaweed from the hull.

With short walks to public transit, the floatplane base, and the Center for Wooden Boats there are a lot of ways to get around, especially if you can find a place for your kayak or Sunfish. Despite Seattle's extensive waterfronts on lakes and sea, life along the lake, life on the lake, is uncommon and rarely available for the price of a new car. Of course, you might have to give up 90% of your possessions, but that's what onshore storage is for. Right?
· Center for Wooden Boats [CWB]
· El Grecko Gecko [THL]
· All Tiny Homes coverage [CS]
Written by Tom Trimbath