FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What do I get when I purchase a set of stock plans?
When you purchase plans from THE small HOUSE CATALOG, you receive a PDF download of your selected plan and a license to print or photocopy as many prints as you need to build one house. You also receive plan support via email.
How do I print a full size plan for my building department?
To print a full size submittable plan, simply:
- Download your house plan PDF file (Download Free Adobe Reader).
- Take (or email) it to a local copy center.
- And request the number of desired print sets for the sheet size of your house plan.
What size prints are my house plans?
- Most of our building plans are 24" x 36" in size. Please check your download information for the exact size of your house plan.
What information is included in a set of house plans?
- 3D color perspectives of your house
- Exterior elevations
- Interior elevations
- Dimensioned floor plans
- Building cross sections
- Foundation plan & details
- Floor framing plans & details
- Roof framing plan & details
- Optional super-insulation details
- Select exterior finishing details
- Select interior finishing details
- Construction notes, callouts, code highlights
- Window & door schedules
- Non-toxic & Zero- or Low-VOC recommendations
- Electrical plans
- Plan support (by email)
Do the plans have an architect's stamp?
- House plans purchased online are not site specific and therefore cannot be stamped and approved for any locale from our office. Our License Agreement & Stock Plan Disclaimer requires that house plans be submitted to a building department (or be stamped by a structural engineer) to be sure they are reviewed for each specific building site prior to building. As an example, your building site might be located in an earthquake or high wind zone and have unique shear wall and hardware requirements. It is common for plans inspectors to request engineering for house plans.
Do you make changes to plans?
- Yes, we make customized changes to our house plans. Please visit our Drafting Services page for additional information on designing a matching style garage for your house, adding additional windows, doors, or making interior or exterior changes and additions. We'll be happy to send you a free estimate for a custom house plan.
What is your return policy?
- House plans are non-refundable. However, you can request customized changes before or after purchasing a house plan. We recommend inquiring about potential changes before purchasing, as well as verifying that your building site is suitable.
What are your terms and conditions?
- Our License Agreement & Stock Plan Disclaimer details the terms and conditions of THE small HOUSE CATALOG. Basically, when you purchase a plan from THE small HOUSE CATALOG what you're purchasing is a set of digital house plan prints and a license to build a house from those prints.
How much does it cost to build one of your catalog houses?
- Please use BUILDING-COST.NET, a *FREE* online cost estimating tool for anyone wanting to build.
- Also, building supply centers everywhere offer free "take off" estimates on building projects.
Can you build me a house?
- We enjoy meeting people interested in our work and get housebuilding requests on an ongoing basis. At this time we do not build for resale nor do we perform any custom construction work.
Can I see/visit one of your houses?
- During the summer our tiny house in Point Roberts is open for visits. Please contact us for details and schedule a tour. We are not open currently despite the good May 2013 weather!
Do small houses meet code?
- Yes, our house plans are designed to satisfy widely accepted building standards and practices and we follow the most current INTERNATIONAL RESIDENTIAL CODE, the IRC. Our plans are suitable for obtaining building permits. Keep in mind that any plan you submit (from us) will need to be approved by a local code enforcement agency (e.g. the local building department) prior to construction to ensure that they meet all pertinent local codes. Building site conditions and building codes will vary from place to place and region to region.
How are people using small houses?
Small and tiny houses are being used for:
- Full-time living
- Vacation cottages
- Backyard cottages (see the Seattle Backyard Cottage ordinance, for example or DPD Seattle Permits)
- Writing studios
- Home Offices
- Vancouver Laneway Housing
- Rental Units
- Temporary Shelters
- Builder's Cottages
- Mother-in-law suites
- Portable Kitchens (designed-to-suit)
- Cottage Industries
- and more...