Accessory Dwellings

A one-stop source about accessory dwelling units, multigenerational homes, laneway houses, ADUs, granny flats, in-law units…

Portland small home survey

Attention: If you are seeking the Oregon DEQ, Metro, and survey being conducted in June, 2013, please visit

From garage lofts, to backyard cottages, to yurts, to cute cabins on wheels, Portland neighborhoods are teeming with little homes of all sorts. But these gems tend to be tucked away from public view, so prospective builders rarely have a chance to learn from the experience of others.

Lots of folks are seeking ideas and inspiration for their own mini home projects, and a local group of small home enthusiasts is hoping to raise awareness about the benefits of accessory dwellings and tiny homes.

Hence our little project to start an informal inventory of local small homes through a couple on-line surveys. We hope information collected from this project can serve as the basis for future small home tours (like the PedalPalooza tiny home bike rides from a couple years ago) and on-line sharing of images, plans and stories about these charming little dwellings.

To receive updates on tiny home tours, policy work, and events, please sign up here (whether or not you have a tiny home).

If you’ve built and/or live in a small home, we hope you’ll take a few minutes to fill out one of the following on-line surveys that best matches your situation:

  • Tiny house survey: For homes under ~200sq.ft. These are typically un-permitted, sometimes on wheels, and may or may not be totally self-sufficient (ie. kitchen, bath)
  • Accessory dwelling survey: For homes between 200sq.ft. and 800sq.ft. These are not mobile and are often (but not always) permitted as accessory dwelling units. They usually have a kitchen, bathroom, sleeping area, and separate entrance.

Finally, if you know people with tiny and small homes, please share this web page!

– Eli Spevak, Orange Splot LLC and
Lina Menard, graduate student, PSU urban planning program

P.S. Three lucky respondents will be randomly selected on Dec. 21st to receive copies of Daniel Pinkwater’s The Big Orange Splot, just enough time for you to read, wrap, and re-gift it to someone else!

About Eli Spevak

Community housing developer


This entry was posted on December 1, 2011 by in News, Policy & Trends.
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