In Texas people like to do their own thing, and nowhere is that more evident than in our homes. Along with the population boom has come a lot of building. Most are your traditional, contemporary single-family homes. Then there are the one-of-a-kind, never could have imagined it homes. From boathouses on Lake Austin to off-the-grid shipping container homes, here’s a look inside the most unconventional homes in Central Texas.
Barndominium Barn Conversion
Chapel Hill, TX
As you can imagine, this is probably our favorite unconventional home in Texas. Barndominium is one of the country’s most impressive barn-like conversions. Architects from LO/JO maintained the traditional, vernacular barn shape, but just about everything else changed in their eco-friendly transformation. From the recycled denim insulation to the rain screen, every aspect of the home/workshop is designed with efficiency in mind.
Colassal Shipping Container Home
Architect Matt Mooney is the genius behind the massive unconventional home on Dallas’ White Rock Lake. The 3,700 square foot home was constructed using 14 shipping containers. Floor to ceiling windows on the second floor allow sunlight to stream in along with spectacular views of the lake. In addition to the patios on both levels there’s also a 1,400 square foot rooftop deck. The home is so uniquely designed it was recently included on an American Institute of Architects tour.
Bercy Chen Boathouse
Out on Lake Austin you’ll find one of the most unconventional and impressive homes in the entire Lone Star State. Not only is it cylindrical and built to hover over the water, it also has a built-in waterfall that cascades from the upstairs patio to lake down below. The Bercy Chen Boathouse features 360-degree views of Lake Austin, the Hill Country and Canyonlands Preserve. The curves of the home and winding staircase up to the second floor make the structure standout even at a distance.
Steel House is possibly the most famous home in Texas – because it resembles a spaceship more than a house. Made entirely of steel that has rusted burnt orange over the last three decades, this home was designed by Robert Bruno to satisfy his urge to sculpt. It took Robert 23 years and 110 tons of steel to craft the structure, which has four columns that hold the “body” of the home a story above the ground.
The Austin Castle House
In the gentle hills northwest of downtown you’ll find the Austin Castle House. It’s completely medieval on the outside with grey cobblestones, gargoyles and towers you would except to see on a castle. But inside the home it’s completely modern. There’s even a retractable roof over the game room. The home has been continuously renovated since it was originally constructed in 1975.
The Treehouse Home
As a child you probably dreamt of living in a treehouse. Well, Jimmy and Sandy Martin made that dream a reality. Their 75,000-pound home sits above the ground in a group of three trees. Since the location was odd enough, the Martin’s kept the exterior very traditional for Texas with a metal roof and wood siding. Inside the Martin treehouse has all the creature comforts of a normal home including a full kitchen and bathroom.
Underground Earth House
If you drive through Dallas there’s a good chance you’ll miss one of the city’s most off-the-wall homes. That’s because it’s underground. The underground Earth House is built into a small hill so that one side of the home can get natural light, but from the street you’d never know it was there. Just beneath the ground the huge 4,500 square foot home is able to keep relatively cool despite the summer heat. There are also three fireplaces to keep things warm during the winter. It was designed by architect Frank Mooreland and went on the market in 2013 for $1.15 million.
Moving in Central Texas? Square Cow Movers has helped hundreds of families move into conventional and unconventional homes across the state. Give us a call for immediate assistance or fill out the form online for an instant moving quote!