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22. What is the smallest cabin/house I can build?

Recent changes to the Park County Land Use Regulations eliminate the previous minimum dwelling size of 600 square feet. The Building Department has been approached by a number of people inquiring as to the minimum square footage required by the adopted building code.

Our current codes do not specify a minimum square footage. However, the 2012 International Building Code does address “efficiency dwelling units” in section 1208.4. This section of the adopted code states that the dwelling shall have the following:

1) Living room of not less than 220 square feet with an additional 100 square feet for every occupant in excess of two people.
2) Separate closet.
3) Kitchen sink, cooking appliance and a refrigeration unit, each having a clear working space of not less than 30 inches.
4) Separate bathroom with a water closet, lavatory, shower and/or bathtub.
5) All light, ventilation and life safety requirements must be met regardless of dwelling size.

Furthermore, in cases where the efficiency dwelling unit is not a component of a multi-unit structure, provisions for mechanical equipment (heat, hot water, pressure tank, etc) will be required as well.

As there are many ways to approach the design of a dwelling there is not a hard and fast rule on the minimum dwelling size. Please keep in mind the above requirements if attempting a minimal sized dwelling. Please note: this only applies to stick built dwellings. Modular and Manufactured dwelling still require a 600 sq. foot footprint at grade level per the Park County Land Use Regulations.


Information provided by DuWayne Langseth and updated 1/11/18.