It’s lean, mean, and it can be your own li’l “green machine.”
A tiny house, inspired by the small homes built on the FYI Network series “Tiny House Nation,” recently made history by being the first of its kind in the Philippines—and with no less than Filipino architects and contractors building the eco-friendly structure.
With a 15-square-meter lot area and 20-sq-m floor area, it’s not so little, admitted Mark Tan, president of Palmeco Philippines Corp. History Con 2017 commissioned Tan’s company and Adriel Humpherdic P. Tan + Architects to work on the small home, which stood right smack in the middle of the FYI Home and Living Fair that occupied a third of the World Trade Center, venue of the four-day entertainment showcase staged by History and FYI media networks.
The modest dwelling has a price tag of P350,000, a steal considering the structure includes all permanent fixtures. Among these are wall and skylight windows, glass panes, sliding doors, hanging cabinets, restroom tiles, the bathroom and its plumbing system. The package also throws in vinyl tiles, the paint job, flooring and roofing.
Outfitted with the mini pleasures of a tiny house, such as hidden storage spaces, transformative elements (sliding door with ladder for the loft bed, kitchen countertops that also serve as workspace), and glass-panel entryways that allow as much natural light inside, perhaps the home’s best feature is being built with a material that’s certified green.
“All walls, ceiling, flooring and roofing is made of one product called Palmeco board, a brand of eco-board certified by the Department of Science and Technology and Department of Environment and Natural Resources as an eco-friendly material,” Tan said. “It’s not made of wood, so we did not cut down any trees.”
What makes the Palmeco board green is it’s 30 percent made of re-engineered palm fiber or coconut husk, he explained. The rest of the board consists of fiber mesh and stone powder, the latter giving a little extra weight to the board for sturdiness, to make it fire-resistant and prevent rodents from penetrating the structure.
“In areas usually infested with rats, [using the board] means rats cannot go in or come out,” the contractor said. “If they gnaw and chew [on the material], their teeth and nails would be filed off. It would hurt them, so they would stop.”
He said there’s an economic benefit as well, citing Quezon City as an example of where to set up house.
“It’s already a green city in the last 10 years, so you can apply for a green permit [for the tiny house],” Tan suggested. “The city government can give a discount of up to 30 percent in real estate tax, and that’s a lot.”