Tiny Houses with their ladder access sleeping lofts aren't very
user friendly for the 'unlimber' in my view.
I think the approach to take for a "Seniors" oriented Tiny House design
should have two specific goals, which would be - ensure that there is/are
a 'real person sized' bathroom/facilities and a real easily accessable
comfortable bed. The Murphy Bed is probably the best candidate for that,
although I can see an upper level bed if there is a safe stairway type
access to it.
Murphy beds are a great idea. It's hard to beat a made-up
real bed for sleeping in, for which you don't need to be an acrobat
to access. A desk, couch or dinette can be attached to the
front [the underside of the bed platform] for day-time use that
then fold out of the way under the Murphy bed when that is opened.
Also check out the 8 and 10 wide house trailers of the 1950s for
design ideas. They were built to be compact portable homes -
hmmm sounds like a Tiny House eh ? There does seem to be an
unspoken bias against housetrailers in the Tiny House movement in
my 'sense' of it. Building a shrunken house using traditional house
building technology on a flatbed trailer isn't necessarily the best
approach for the most efficient layout and use, other than the general
aspect of a smaller size. Borrow ideas and techniques from the old
housetrailers and also the live-on boats/small yachts when you build.
Those were built specifically with many space-saving ideas necessitated
by their smaller sizes. If you want the result to look more "House-like",
then go for that on the exterior. SIPs would be a good approach to use
too I think. [Ray-Core SIPs would be my choice if they were obtainable
in my locale: http://www.raycore.com/
There is a house trailer from the early 1950s, called the Lighthouse DuPlex,
that would be the perfect one to emulate, with some modifications, for
a seniors tiny house. It is one of the specialized type of housetrailer
called a 'Double Decker' or a "two story" house trailer. It is ~ 8ft wide x
28ft long [body length I think] and ~ 11ft6in high, in size. It has a living
room and very compact bath and an eat-in kitchen on the main level and
two full-size-bed "bedrooms" with standing height aisles on the second level.
It is an ingenious over-n-under design that can be easily modified for modern
times by just putting in a larger bath [The original bath design is too cramped
for easy use in my view.] across the rear or on one rear side and then have the
kitchen and dining area go from that up to the steps that lead up to the full
height aisles in each upper 'bedroom'. And build this new version 8ft6in wide,
for some extra inches in width [In a small unit even a couple extra inches count/help.].
Put the roof ridge crosswise across the width of the body, not lengthwise. Better
yet, do a low arching bow style roof front to back.
Here's a link to an earlier post of mine on it:http://tnttt.com/viewtopic.php?p=871972#p871972
Here's a link to one that was found and brought back:http://www.cannedhamtrailers.com/lighthouse.htm
Here is a fast Paint drawing I did for another post showing my updated
profile that I called the "Lighthouse Redux":
[Click for larger view.]
Here is a fast Paint drawing I did for new example floorplans for
the "Lighthouse Redux".
This is not to strict scale. Hopefully they are self-explainatory.
Besides the upper beds, you could also have a Murphy Bed up against
the front wall of the living room if desired, for either owner or guest
use. It'd only take ~ 8-12in of depth of space for the folded up bed.
So there's my take on it. To me this would be a much preferable
approach to the 'Senior Tiny House' than the 'typical' Tiny House
design out there. It is a little larger than most of them, but not by much,
and a smaller, one bedroom, version could easily be done if that was
more to one's liking.
BTW, a guy in the 1950s actually built his own clone of the Lighthouse Duplex,
so if it was done once already, it could also be done again !
If you have a house - you have a hobby.