Hermit Houses: Tiny Houses with a Sharp Exterior

Do you want to add an extra living space to your home, but don’t want it to look like a shed? Then perhaps you should check out Hermit Houses by Dutch designers Daniël Venneman and Mark van der Net.


The Hermit Houses are affordable, modular and customizable (very similar to yesterdays post, the Mihaus Studio). Their size also allows them to be transported from one location to another if needed – perfect if you feel like a change in scenery.

Hermit Houses, tiny modular dwellings by Daniël Venneman and Mark van der Net


The first prototype to be released is called Abé, and at 150 square foot it could be perfect for a couple or small family with some modification, namely a bathroom.

If you’re looking for an out-of-the-box solution, the Jean Hermit House could be for you. It features a kitchenette, bathroom (with a shower and composting toilet), and a living room that doubles as the bedroom. It also includes integrated systems like lighting, a water heater,  and solar panels.


Hermit Houses, tiny modular dwellings by Daniël Venneman and Mark van der Net

[Random side note, the Abé model’s name is based on the tragic love story of Aberlard & Heloise. Not familiar with it? Yeah, I wasn’t either. You can find out more about it here if you’re curious. Perhaps they were designed to act as romantic getaways.]

Hermit Houses, tiny modular dwellings by Daniël Venneman and Mark van der Net

From the designers:

“We believe that architecture should strive to give people a place of their own in harmony with their surroundings. We also believe that building is a culture that involves collaborating, sharing tools and knowledge.”

Hermit Houses, tiny modular dwellings by Daniël Venneman and Mark van der Net

“Underlying the current Hermit Houses collection there is a unique building method and software package that allows us to design small houses in numerous varieties and quickly make them into reality. With this ‘mass-customization’ way of producing we can suit local constraints and serve the specific needs of clients without a lot of extra costs.”

Hermit Houses, tiny modular dwellings by Daniël Venneman and Mark van der Net

Obviously the most striking and (for me) appealing aspect of these tiny houses is their exterior. Their unusual form and sharp edges remind me of a squeeze box, and like a squeeze box they’re highly flexible, which is always a good thing when it comes to tiny houses.

UPDATE: After contacting Hermit Houses about their prices for these homes they got back to be with the following details. All inclusive prices for their standard models:

  • Emy – 7,800 Euro ($10,400)
  • Abe – 12,000 Euro ($16,000)
  • Elle – 17,000 Euro ($22,600)
  • Jean – 22,000 Euro ($29,300)

They also offer customized designs that you can build yourself.  They’ll set you back about 500 Euro/m2. Or you can have them create a prefab construction kit that costs 700 Euro/m2. I actually think this is pretty reasonable, and was expecting it to cost more. Unfortunately, if you don’t live within the EU they can’t build and deliver the home, but they are willing to work alongside local contractors.

What do you think of this tiny house’s look? Could you live with it?

Via Inhabitat

Niall Burke

Structural engineer by day, tiny house designer by night. Niall has a keen interest in small spaces, green design, and sustainability. He started developing Humble Homes while studying for his masters degree in engineering. He is the founder and managing editor of Humble Homes.

  1. A couple of years ago, while browsing the net, reading DIY house-building articles and comments, I’ve found a Cost Calculator. Out of sheer curiosity, I’ve started filling in the blanks with the measurements of the small house I was building. One of the most interesting aspects was the fact that if your house has more than four corners the costs would get higher and higher. Now, looking at the Hermit House, the first thing popping in my mind is: “How many corners?”

  2. Lol, Mugur I have a feeling that these Hermit Houses are probably ‘up-market’ tiny houses. I think I’ll send the company an email to see if they can tell me how much they are. They also sell them in kit form which would (should) save some money.

  3. Well, Niall, their answer to your inquiry might be: “If you ask how much it costs, you can’t afford it!” Now, really, I’d rather build/live in a geodesic dome (or in a Lexa Dome) than into such a house – if I may choose an unusual style. Or better yet – an A-frame house: still different, but better looking and a more ergonomic layout. Keep on the good work!

  4. That’s not a house, it’s a modular bedroom. Put 3 of them together, then you’d have a house! Really, a tiny house should be able to be completely lived in. People are just putting the label ‘tiny house’ on anything these days! Not crazy about the look either.

  5. Dnana I have to agree, I think it might be a bit of a stretch to call it a house. I like the exterior for its funkiness, but I do wonder how durable it would be in a harsh environment – possible trapping of wind/snow/water. Although the architects probably have it covered.

  6. Well, Niall, I’ll have to quote Cypher from “Matrix”: “Ignorance is bliss!” (I’m kidding, I know it belongs to Thomas Gray). You have killed two birds with one stone. With the link to the apartmenttherapy.com you made me spent hours just to scratch the surface of the great things, ideas, and stuff one can find there.
    I am currently building a small house – 533 sq.ft. (49.6 sq.m.) on two levels(main floor and attic), with 16 ft. 4″ by 16 ft. 4″ (4.98 m. by 4.98 m.) footprint and the same 16 ft. 4″ (4.98 m.) maximum height. By showing me Julia’s A-frame, you make me wish I tear down my small house and rebuild it as her A-frame! Please, man, don’t do that again! If you’ll show me more houses like that, I’ll get my power screwdriver and start dismantling my work (that shouldn’t be too hard – I haven’t used any nails, just screws)!
    Thanks a lot for your reply and for the link!

  7. On one hand, I undrstand the answer of, : If you have to ask how much it costs, then you can’t afford it, but on the other hand, my defence would be, I want to know how much it costs, because in this day and age, if I can get the same quality, but cheaper, I will go elsewheres to buy. The other Contractor may drop his over all price, to get the business.. It’s a cut throat world out there..Your going to get what you want, but your going to pay for what you get.


  8. Mugur – Apartment Therapy is ridiculously addictive. I too can while away the hours on that website without noticing that the sun’s gone down. I think it’s great that you’re building your own small house! Although I’m sure it also involves plenty of long hours, but in the end it’ll be worth it. :) And I wouldn’t worry about what other people have done lol. I simply take bits & pieces from other people work and ideas, and try to incorporate them into my own. (When I think about it, Humble Homes is pretty much my own personal scrapbook of houses and designs that inspire me) I’m sure your home will be as great as Julia’s A-frame!

  9. Diane – I can understand your point of view. I think everyone does haha. We’re all constantly looking to get more ‘bang for buck’, but as you said you get what you paid for. Often premium construction leads to a lot of small improvements that in the grand scheme of a building can make a big difference to its efficiency and longevity. I guess it comes to the old trade off of quantity and quality. The beauty of tiny houses is that you’ve drastically reduced the quantity factor, allowing you to splash out on the quality!