Skip to main content

Side Hustle House

A neighborhood near you
Date 2018
Size 1,095 SF (base unit)
Client Cape Cod Young Professionals
  • Congress for the New Urbanism: New England Chapter Urbanism Award for Economic Innovation, 2018
  • Core 77 Design Awards: Open Design Award Runner Up, 2018

The Side Hustle House® is Union’s winning submission for the Cape Cod Young Professional’s House Design Contest, which sought home designs to address the needs of young professionals on Cape Cod. Both on and off the Cape, this demographic is facing an inability to find right-sized housing in their communities.

Union created an efficient solution that illustrates how one housing design could support flexibility for a variety of economic pursuits and efficiently serve a wide variety of living arrangements. The project promotes a “lovable” density and healthy relationship to existing community character, while also demonstrating how to reduce the amount of time and resources required to build and operate a home.

The Side Hustle House® is a two-bedroom base house with a suite of additions that adapt to life’s changes. It provides the ability to generate income from the home, benefiting the homeowner and the region while potentially providing both mixed-use and mixed-income neighborhoods in small, infill lots and at new development sites.

Side Hustle House® in an urban setting
Side Hustle House® with an attached workshop

Base House / Single Family

The ground floor of the Side Hustle House® lives large in a compact footprint. All spaces flow seamlessly without sacrificing a sense of enclosure within each individual room. A variety of built-in storage solutions and a powder room expand the functionality.

Upstairs, two comfortably-sized bedrooms are separated by a common bathroom. There’s a dedicated laundry closet for a stacked washer and dryer and ample closet space in each room.

Base House / Income Property

The base house is designed to be a self-contained unit that can accommodate the side and tail additions when you expand your family or your business but still want to stay in our neighborhood. Keeping the future expansion opportunities in mind, the headers at the rear kitchen window, the powder room window, and the side entry window are sized for standard exterior doors, and the structure and roof forms are complementary but self-contained.

Side Addition

The side addition is all about flexibility. It can easily be added on in the future by converting the front hall window into a door.

Some Possibilities:

  • Garage for keeping your ride-hailing car secure and clean

  • Office accessible to the public for when your side hustle turns to a full time job

  • Workshop to get that custom jewelry-making business up and running

Tail Addition

The tail addition has two sizes to provide more expansion opportunities for your needs.

Some Possibilities:

  • Add a bedroom suite to the back of the house

  • Take advantage of the rental market by building an attached income property that you can rent out

  • Welcome your in-laws for what they promise will be a short-term stay…

  • Save on storage fees by keeping the family dinghy in your rear-loaded garage

For additional background on the project, or to purchase a set of Side Hustle House® plans for yourself, visit