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Yurt And Garage - Conjoined At Birth

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Old 09-22-2015, 12:06 PM   #1
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Default Yurt and Garage - Conjoined at birth

My wife and I are looking to build a fairly inexpensive living space on the coast of North Carolina here in about 18 months. We like the concept of a yurt but I was also looking for some storage space. The thought process behind this design was that by keeping the kitchen and bathroom in the garage we limit the complexity of the yurt since there's no plumbing and minimal electricity.

Ideally, we'd like to have the yurt and garage open to each other where they are attached. I think the slightly raised yurt would have a cool design effect. You could stand in the kitchen and look into the large expanse of the yurt and it would feel very spacious.

We also figured we would run a standard HVAC system in the house-like parts of the garage and that would provide some space where we would be guaranteed to be comfortable on high heat/high humidity days. This summer was particularly humid where we are moving. Highs in the upper 80s, lows in the lower 70s, and high humidity all day.

I think the "no doors" idea is ultimately not going to work because I suspect the

insulation

differences between the yurt and the garage (which will be insulated like a house in the living spaces) will be significant enough that the yurt will cause the HVAC system in the garage to perform poorly.

The yurt and garage will be wooded on 3 sides, meaning they should only see direct sunlight in the middle of the day but my searches regarding yurts and humidity make me question if I shouldn't leave some trees on the front side as well so the canopy provides some additional shade in the middle of the day. I know the trade off here is debris and dirt from the trees and the hazard of trees falling down but I question how comfortable a yurt with no cover will be there.

I thought I would post a link to the plans (it's a PDF) here with the hopes of soliciting feedback. Thank you in advance for your expertise! It has been incredibly educating reading this forum and we likely wouldn't even have considered a yurt without it!

https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B9j...ew?usp=sharing

The yurt in the plan is 30'. We anticipate the bedroom being in the yurt. If we found the humidity was problematic, even after trying other remedies, there is a flex room in the garage that could be turned into a bedroom. If that happened the yurt would be a dining/play/living room type space only.


Last edited by wrdanner; 09-22-2015 at 12:28 PM.
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Old 09-22-2015, 01:16 PM   #2
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Default Re: Yurt and Garage - Conjoined at birth

I'm really starting to get the impression from posts I've read here over the last several months that a tightly built and insulated yurt isn't the best dwelling choice in a humid climate. I live in dry Colorado where there is generally less than 10 percent humidity. Also, Mongolia is very dry. Just tossin this in here. Good luck.
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Old 09-22-2015, 01:31 PM   #3
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Default Re: Yurt and Garage - Conjoined at birth

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Originally Posted by Bob Rowlands View Post
I'm really starting to get the impression from posts I've read here over the last several months that a tightly built and insulated yurt isn't the best dwelling choice in a humid climate. I live in dry Colorado where there is generally less than 10 percent humidity. Also, Mongolia is very dry. Just tossin this in here. Good luck.
I've been catching that drift as well, which is why I'm all about seeking as much info as I can before we build it. I didn't really intend to make ours tightly built and insulated though. I think if it doesn't work in the traditional sense then we should look at other options.

We could certainly do something like a Smiling Woods Yurt but that will be more like a house as far as

insulation

goes, than a skeleton with a cloth covering over it.
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Old 09-22-2015, 06:14 PM   #4
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Default Re: Yurt and Garage - Conjoined at birth

I'd be sorely tempted to make the garage a little larger, then put the yurt on top of it. Wouldn't take too much--yurts are pretty light; might save some on platform costs. Only problem would be maintaining water drainage away from the yurt. That and having the kitchen/bathroom downstairs--at least you'd get your exercise in :P
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Old 09-22-2015, 08:08 PM   #5
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Default Re: Yurt and Garage - Conjoined at birth

If I was considering building a garage on a slab, I'd go ahead and just suggest bypassing the yurt and building a conventional small three bedroom two bath rancher of 1200 feet, 30 x 40 or so, with attached garage. Very affordable and resale would be a snap. I grew up in one, and so did my wife, and tens of millions of others. IMO they are THE perfect affordable home. This type of house just might make a comeback since home prices are so insane now.
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Old 09-22-2015, 09:06 PM   #6
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Default Re: Yurt and Garage - Conjoined at birth

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Rowlands View Post
If I was considering building a garage on a slab, I'd go ahead and just suggest bypassing the yurt and building a conventional small three bedroom two bath rancher of 1200 feet, 30 x 40 or so, with attached garage. Very affordable and resale would be a snap. I grew up in one, and so did my wife, and tens of millions of others. IMO they are THE perfect affordable home. This type of house just might make a comeback since home prices are so insane now.
We'd like to build a nice house on the lot some day, but aren't ready for that yet. I'm not really worried about the cost of building because I'm doing all the work. That 1200 square foot rancher will cost about $3,000 a year in taxes and hurricane

insurance

, and that chaps my ass. The yurt/shed also keeps our taxes and

insurance

low.

We'll want the shed no matter what so if a house eventually gets built the yurt will come down and the shed stays for a wood shop or whatever I'm into at that point.

I figure I can build the yurt and shed myself for $30,000 finished, and the taxes and insurance won't clear $1,000. In addition I get an indoor spot for the car, which is a plus being half a mile from the ocean because the salt eats everything.

So really this is an exercise in saving as much money as possible and experiencing a neat alternative living arrangement. That's the goal anyway.
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Old 09-23-2015, 06:02 AM   #7
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Default Re: Yurt and Garage - Conjoined at birth

Good luck with your plans.
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Old 12-14-2015, 02:58 AM   #8
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Default Re: Yurt and Garage - Conjoined at birth

I left the coast of North Carolina because of the taxes and the 110% humidity. I am in cool dry Alaska. 25 degrees here is a light jacket day!
You will HAVE to AC the entire property. Good luck!
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