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Yurt Homes

What Is a Yurt?

Yurts are buildings and structures, generally in the shape of a dome that are built on a wooden platform. In the new age of seeking sustainable structural engineering and green building design, yurts are a real alternative to contemporary building techniques. Yurts provide an excellent alternative to traditional construction. People are looking beyond wood, cement, brick, and stone to alternative materials and construction techniques. Increasingly, people find yurts to be a quick answer for an affordable dwelling space.

Yurt homes are a throwback to the past. More than two thousand years ago, nomadic tribes of Asia developed the Yurt into a durable shelter that traveled well. To this day, the Yurt remains one of the strongest and most efficient outdoor living structures ever devised. Yurts are classified as temporary buildings.


Simple and Flexible

Yurts are an excellent example of dwellings that are low in impact and environmentally friendly. Yurts are sold on the idea that almost anyone can afford a yurt as opposed to a traditional home. A yurt does not have to be moved around and can be set on a permanent foundation—unless one uses it for camping. The yurt can be equipped with a small stove for heating and cooking purposes. The yurt can be scaled to incorporate every member of the family, and can be furnished with the type of furniture you find most comfortable.

In addition, yurts are flexible in size and height. The interior is typically a large, open space that would go well with open floor plans.

Features of Yurt Homes:

Typically available in kits, the yurt is built on a wooden foundation, and construction time is not nearly as long as traditional homes. Many are insulated with a bubble wrap material invented by NASA, which keeps the yurt cool in the summer and warm in the winter. Other features include lattice walls and skylights.

The compact shape of the yurt and combination of lightweight members in tension and compression mean that the structure is highly efficient in maximizing strength while minimizing the use of materials.

A round house comes with huge benefits that range from cost-effectiveness to the overall aura of the home you reside in. Economic and environmentally friendly, a round house meets more needs than you may think. Still, many building departments consider a yurt to be a temporary structure, much like a tent. Because of this, we do not need to do Architectural design, and electrical and gas are not typically designed to be part of the plans needed for a building permit.

Modern Yurts

Today’s round house/yurt structures typically fall into the category of a prefab home. Prefab homes are highly desirable and surprisingly easy to maintain in terms of heating and cooling. This is specific to the round dwelling/yurt, as the smaller square footage of exterior walls results in less heat loss. The beauty of a prefab dwelling/yurt is that you get to have a hand in the design of your dwelling.

This type of dwelling is roomy and earthy in the way that light flows in and the overall design lets more nature in to comfort you during times when you are present.

Modern users love their Yurt because it is a lightweight, low-cost building that delivers the structural integrity, longevity and low maintenance.

Yurts Go Where You Want To Be

Unique, affordable, environmentally friendly, and easy to set up, Yurts are an outstanding choice for a vast range of personal uses, including a guest house or studio, to a romantic getaway or vacation cabin.
Many Central Asian groups use the yurt as a nationalistic symbol. In these areas, yurts may be used as cafés, museums (especially relating to national culture), and souvenir shops. Also, many park systems and resorts worldwide are using Yurts as lodging in a vast range of outdoor recreation settings.

Here is a testimonial from some clients we designed a yurt for:

“We would also like to thank Nabil Taha, Ralph Hall, and Dianna Fulleton from PSE Consulting Engineers, Inc. in Klamath Falls, OR. With their expertise and attention to detail, they provided us with the necessary drawings and engineering data that allowed us to obtain our building permit from Mohave County, AZ without a hitch! Although this may seem like a routine procedure, let us remind you that this is the first yurt in this county to be permitted. PSE is licensed in Arizona as well as a number of other states and supplied us with “wet-stamped” documentation.”

Mr. and Mrs. Tatalveih

We at PSE would like to Thank Mr. and Mrs. Tatalveih for being wonderful clients, and for providing some of these photos. For more client comments, please visit our client testimonials page.
Also, we would like to thank Pacific Yurt for their excellent products.
Please contact us if you are considering a yurt home. We’ll be happy to discuss your expectations and determine whether a yurt home is the right option for you.

Building Codes for Yurts:

Most States in the United States adapted the International Building Code, IBC or a modified version of it.

PSE Consulting Engineers has helped hundreds of our clients get building permits for their Yurt dwellings. The capacity of the Yurt for vertical loads such as dead, live and snow as well as the capacity of the Yurt to resist the lateral loads such as wind and seismic loads are calculated and submitted to the building department for approval.

Watch the video at right to see a yurt platform being constructed: