Say how much does it cost to build a house these days? The answer could depend upon many factors; the location, type of house, finishing and what not, but in any case the answer can’t be $11,000, or can it be?
Meet Brian Schultz; a boat builder from Oregon who has managed to build a house for himself in the woods and that too for a price of $11,000. The trick behind such a low cost is employing salvaged materials to build the house. The house is being called the Japanese Forest House, is double storey, made of wood that was salvaged and covers an area of 200 sq. ft. The whole endeavor took Brian a time span of 2 years.
According to Brian, he came up with the idea of building this house after he had managed to salvage a brass sink from the dump and it shone like anything! In his own words; ‘It cleaned up really nicely and so I decided I needed to build a place to put it. I’m not kidding, that’s actually how it got started! I like small spaces with open floor plans, they’re cozy, less expensive, and easier to build, easier to clean and they encourage you not to accumulate a bunch of stuff you don’t really need.’
The house’s name isn’t just a name; the house has been inspired by Japan’s architecture and comes with a simple and open plan. Brian made use of recycled cotton, to account for the insulation. The house hosts some slick handcrafted designs, which also include exposed beams with the raw finishing; another glimpse into the Japanese architecture.
Step here into the living room and you will realize that the tatami platform, is a multi-purpose platform that can be used for sleeping, relaxing or eating. The kitchen has been made out of a fallen tree and has the brass sink which initiated the whole idea. According to Brian, he has tried his best to keep the house’s environmental footprint to a minimum and said; ‘The sink water drains directly into the flower bed in front of the home meaning that if the flowers die, we are putting things in the sink we shouldn’t.’
The bedroom features a queen size bed which has been constructed from natural latex foam. Scrap incense cedar and handmade paper was used to craft the dresser, tables and lanterns in the house.
The next to-do item on Brian’s list is a dome for the workshop where he builds boats. He said; ‘I want to integrate a greenhouse and a high efficiency rocket mass heater to burn the wood scraps. I’d like my chickens to sleep in the structure at night to help keep it warm. In my mind I can see students building boats surrounded by baby plants and dodging the occasional escaped chicken! I want the structure to showcase passive solar and off grid concepts, but more than anything I want it to feel alive inside.’
Apart from that, he has something more in store for the Japanese house in the forest; he intends to create a better and improved version of it and is currently trying to get his hands on funding for the land. We wish him good luck!
Check out the video below for more: