This tiny Duluth home lists for a staggering $182,500
DULUTH – “I’ve literally used larger trays in my dentist’s chair.”
TikTok user Jonathan Carson described the bathroom of the first market-rate tiny house for sale in Duluth, listed at a price that sparked local outrage, a parody account on Facebook, and Carson’s TikTok video that has been viewed nearly 400,000 times.
The newly built, 205-square-foot home went on the market in June for $195,000 but has since dropped to $182,500. This furnished dorm with a sleeping loft is filled with light and simple space-saving features to maximize its compactness.
The very small nature of the house provides plenty of material for the satirical novel, Tighe Niehaus, written from the perspective of the house: He recently asked for pizza delivery recommendations for places with cramped boxes.
Realtor Christina Gilman has shown the Sixth Avenue East property about a dozen times, mostly to people interested in social media coverage.
“I kind of took the advertising angle of ‘buy yourself a piece of social media history,’” Gelman joked. “I think the house has a lot of potential.”
Sean Dixon, of Colorado-based Simple Tiny Development, said the project was his first in tiny homes, which are less than 400 square feet. He said the pilot project did not go as planned, due to delays and high construction costs during the pandemic.
“Everything that could go wrong has gone wrong,” Dixon said. “We will sell it at a loss.”
Dixon said Duluth’s program to address the housing shortage prompted him to build here first; The city awarded his company $8,700 for the lot. Final construction costs exceeded $190,000.
The city has received complaints about price, Chief Administrative Officer Noah Schuchman told City Council members last month, but it cannot dictate the market.
Other tiny home projects are planned in Duluth, and a couple have been built for veterans.
The popularity of the Internet at home has had a downside. Negative reviews of Gilman and other harsh criticism of her appeared online, she said, “just to do the job I was hired to do.”
Dixon said he’s not sure about moving forward with more tiny homes after such poor reception, but noted that the Duluth home, near the city’s two hospitals, would be an ideal place to rent to mobile nurses or other medical professionals.
“This doesn’t have to be a negative thing,” he added. “If someone wants to talk to us and learn from our mistakes, we will gladly tell you what happened and how we think it should be done better.”