Describe your place:
Auditi: Small but spacious, with more light than you can image.
Adam: Our house is located in East Raleigh. When I started looking for a house, I said I had to live within a 1 mile radius of the state capitol. I fell in love with the 827 location and got to know the neighbors. No other locations I looked at had a comparable proximity to downtown.
What do you love about your space?:
Auditi: The master bathroom shower, all the sunlight, and the downstairs heart-pine floors.
Adam: Open, compact, reused materials, natural light, pushing limits of space and materials, simple space with complex process.
How would you improve your space?:
Auditi: I’d love to include a proper mud room, i.e a space where we can dump our jackets and muddy shoes before we enter the house.
Adam: We need to work on finish furnishings (couches, chairs, etc.), and organization.
What do you like best about small living?:
Auditi: It keeps Adam and I from accumulating unnecessary stuff. Everything in the house is exactly and only what we need. We don’t believe in uni-taskers (besides the fire extinguisher and our currently used toothbrushes), so everything in the house must have a dual purpose.
Adam: Awareness of “stuff” (and limiting it). Small living doesn’t mean you can’t entertain. There is a lower cost of living (build price, tax, energy). Less to think about (decorating, etc.).
Tips for fellow and potential small-space dwellers:
Auditi: No uni-taskers allowed, besides a fire extinguisher, and ok, perhaps a toilet bowl cleaner. Everything should have dual-function.
Adam: Have less “stuff.” Be aware of your guest’s expectations of space. Be prepared to educate family and friends on “why.”
Anything else you would like to share?:
Auditi: Nicole rocks!
Adam: Thank you to Nicole for being involved in the process! Also, we bought all our kitchen appliances from Craigslist or through auctions. We have a solar hot water. The upstairs floor is a finished plywood subfloor.
A note from Nicole:
I admire the idea of making a home that you can grow into with your future family. It may not be “small” if you are strictly looking at square footage, but considering the lifecycle of the house and the future growth of your family, it is appropriate and responsible. This is what Adam and Auditi had in mind when they approached the architects about designing an affordable, modern home in East Raleigh. The Chasen Residence was one of the first projects I saw develop from concept through construction at in situ studio.
The house is compact, yet spacious. On the ground floor, the entrances, kitchen, 1/2 bath, closets, and stair are aligned to one side of the house, opening up the rest of the space for living and dining, from the front porch to the screen porch. A double-story living space at the front of the house fills the spaces with light from all sides, including the ceiling. A lofted office space looks down to the living space and out to the street. This loft can actually be converted into a third bedroom when the family grows, while the future closet space makes a perfect desk nook in the meantime. The master bedroom is humble in size and closet space, yet has wonderful views outside, including the Raleigh skyline.
Adam and Auditi bring a special character to their home: their bikes hang from the screen porch ceiling, the flexible living space accommodates small and large dinner parties enjoying their baking/cooking talents, and an extensive, large salt water fish tank separates the den from the rest of the living space. They have collaborated in making a custom home to suit their lifestyle. Thinking further about “aging-in-place,” they hope to build an accessory dwelling unit, or garage apartment, to rent and/or expand their living.
We were able to get creative with low-cost, special details. I especially love the reclaimed doors on tracks to hide closets and a bathroom. Read more about the house and see more pictures through in situ studio: the Chasen Residence.