Designer Cottages, a division of Clayton, a Berkshire Hathaway company, said Tuesday it is moving into markets across America to offer luxury, "tiny" modular homes alongside what it calls a unique customer shopping experience.

The Designer Cottages brand has started its growth into regions that serve home buyers looking for new home solutions near second-home, vacation and urban markets where prices of new construction, available units, speed of construction and rent prices are making affordable homeownership less attainable. The Designer Cottages floor plans, designed by architect Jeffrey Dungan, maximize every square inch of living space with quality materials, luxuriously-crafted finishes and specialty brands.

The view from a Clayton Designer Cottage.
The view from a Clayton Designer Cottage.

"Our home designs embrace the minimalist lifestyle without sacrificing style or comfort," explained National Brand Manager Jim Greer. "Designer Cottages are the perfect solution for a variety of buyers - like families seeking out a second home getaway, retirees looking to downsize or even young professionals working near cities. In addition, our unique home buying journey delivers an incredible customer experience for this important niche homeowner."

Designer Cottages home buyers can visit a Sales Village and Experience Center location for a unique shopping experience. In addition to touring available floor plans in person, like the Saltbox and Low Country designs, customers will be able to book overnight stays to test out 'living tiny' firsthand before making the decision to buy. Independently owned and operated, the first of the Designer Cottages Sales Village and Experience Centers recently opened in Cashiers, N.C. with plans to start selling spaces in a tiny community in early 2019.

Designer Cottages are built to comply with local building and zoning codes to navigate construction requirements and zoning restrictions often associated with the 'tiny home' category. The small floor plans can be built to state and local construction codes as modular homes, which permits flexibility because modular homes can be placed in areas as a permanent residence where other types of tiny homes are not permitted. Designer Cottages modular homes are built more efficiently by using cost-cutting methods such as off-site production assembly, bulk purchase of quality building materials and utilization of the national Clayton supply network to build windows, roof trusses and cabinets that are integrated into the home construction process.

"The affordable housing crisis affects not only low-income households, but middle-income households as well," says Greer. "Every day more people realize that choosing to live in homes built efficiently with modest floor plans could answer their needs, and this is a trend we anticipate will continue to gain in popularity. We provide an easy, cost-effective solution for homeowners that need a smaller living space for a variety of uses to fit their lifestyle."