Since the 1950’s Australia’s average free-standing house size has more than doubled, yet the number of occupants in the average home has halved. In fact, Australians are building the second-biggest freestanding houses in the world behind the US at an average of 230.8 square metres.
But one new Melbourne business is proving that bigger is not always better while also tackling the big issues of housing affordability, youth homelessness and environmental sustainability.
And Responsible Wood is playing its part to guarantee the sustainability of this new product with certified timber at the fore.
The idea began with a cubby house design competition held by Kids Under Cover in 2017 which was won by international architects Grimshaw. From this collaboration Nest’d™ was born – a new social enterprise which sells affordable and sustainable prefabricated “tiny homes”. Launched in 2018, by Kids Under Cover, 100% of the profit of every home sold is directed to the charity’s work helping prevent youth homelessness.
Nest’d™ General Manager, Kieran Callan explains how sales of the tiny house give back to the community; “A Kids Under Cover studio built in the backyards and gardens of family homes actively helps prevent youth homelessness by easing the pressures on families. Nestd™ is the evolution of this innovation. We are delighted to be working with world-leading architects, Grimshaw, to deliver a sustainable, stylish and affordable compact home which also invests in the lives of young people.”
Nest’d offers three home designs and at 32sqm the top of the range is The Peak. While also being the largest, it offers sophisticated interior planning including built-in kitchen, seating areas, bed and bathroom with a contemporary exterior which suits a range of lifestyles. At only $139,000 it can be delivered flat-packed and constructed in two weeks. The Peak is being promoted as ideal for teenage retreats, granny flats, home offices, yoga studios, Airbnb rentals or first homes for people otherwise priced out of the market.
Grimshaw architect Matthew Hutton describes how The Peak offers so much in so little space; “The kitchen, bathroom, laundry, bedroom and couch spaces are integrated into one cube-shaped pod, envisaged as a beautifully detailed piece of joinery.”