Geoff de Ruiter, a PhD student at the University of Northern British Columbia recently built his own tiny treehouse, which he called the Raven Loft. It is suspended 17 feet (5.1 m) off the ground and it cost him just $8,200 to complete, mostly since a lot of the materials used to construct the tree house were salvaged, reused, or repurposed. The tree house stands on a 0.5-acre (0.2 hectare) plot of rural land on picturesque Pender Island, BC, which he acquired for $32,000.
The Raven Loft measures just 8 x 13 ft (2.4 x 4 m) and can be accessed by a steep wooden staircase. This staircase has wheels and can travel on a small track that enables it to move a little when the wind is blowing hard. The entryway opens into a cozy living/dining room area with a sofa bed. The tiny retreat also features a kitchen that’s fitted with an induction stove, a mini-fridge and sink, along with storage space in the form of drawers.
There is also a loft area, which houses the bedroom with a double bed. This is accessible via a set of stairs that have storage integrated into them. This area also houses a large water bottle that feeds the kitchen tap. A crawl space is located above the bedroom and can be reached via a few more steps.
The tiny retreat is heated by an standard electric heater, a tea candle-based heater, and the lighting. Solar power panels were not an option given the forest location of the treehouse, so Geoff opted to connect the home to the existing electrical grid, which is partly fed by hydropower.
Being so small, he did not require a permit to build it, which also saved a lot of money. Geoff is now in the process of building a second tiny house retreat on his mother’s land, which he plans to rent out.