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Yurt Interiors, Flooring, and Storage

What are some flooring options?
What about storage?
How can you have privacy in a yurt?
What are some interior options?
Can interior partition walls be added?
How do I add a bathroom?
Can I add a kitchen?

What are some flooring options?

There are several flooring options, and many of them depend on the use of the yurt and if you have your yurt set up on the ground or on a platform.

If your yurt is set up on a platform, the most user friendly options are indoor/outdoor carpet, linoleum, or the green alternative marmoleum. 

  • These options are easy to install, easy-to clean, and will be more forgiving in terms of the need for climate control.

  • Linoleum is the least expensive, easiest to find, offers many pattern choices and creates an air and moisture barrier.

  • It can be wrapped around the sides to form a tight seal and will protect any insulation that is in the floor.  However, this is a vinyl product and comes with concerns about health issues, and environmental issues due to PVC’s and off-gassing.

  • The green alternative is called marmoleum and is non toxic, less available and 2-3 times more expensive.  It is made from linseed oil, jute, pine resin, and wood flour.  Many styles and colors are available. Other flooring options hardwood, laminate flooring, bamboo, cork, carpet, tile and others.

Many of these options do not work well with high levels of moisture and temperature change and may require that a space be climate controlled.  With any flooring, it is important to know the technical data and required sub floor requirements before making a decision.

  • Due to the lattice walls, in many cases it is much easier to install the floor before putting up the yurt.

  • Painting the floor is also a good inexpensive option.  Many times “oops” or mis-tinted paints are available at a fraction of the price. It is important o caulk and primer the painted surface correctly before painting and use a paint that is durable and easy to clean. We also offer an insulating floor coating that is very durable and will also provide reflective insulation to your floor.

  • Another option for a screened-in-porch yurt is using decking boards that are made using different types of wood.  This type of floor would not be used for year-round use as it cannot be insulated.

If you are setting the yurt up on the ground, you can put in a fabric floor or a tarp can be used for a temporary setup.  If you are setting up the yurt on flat ground, you can also make a permanent floor such as a concrete slab or earthen floor slab.

What about storage?

Building the platform for the yurt higher off the ground will create a space under the yurt where a storage space can be built.  You can simply build a shelf to keep things off the ground or build an enclosure with locking doors. This space can be used for keeping seasonal things you don’t need inside your yurt. It will also make repairs to the platform easier, and provide extra strength to the platform.

As far as storage inside the yurt, it is always good to make use of space underneath beds, or build or buy wardrobes and shelving that has doors that can close.  It is nice to have attractive “closets” that close and leave your yurt feeling clutter free.

How can you have privacy in a yurt?

On our land we have built multiple yurts to create different functional spaces; for example, we have a separate living room, bedroom, crafting yurt, yoga yurt, playhouse, bathhouse and then we have a combined kitchen/ dining yurt.

Another option in larger yurts is hanging fabric from the walls to create separate spaces, or to arrange furniture in such a way that the yurt feels like it has rooms.  Some people even choose to install real walls, or rolling walls for flexibility.

What are some interior options?

There are many options for yurt interiors; we recommend keeping the yurt open without interior walls and creating spaces around the perimeter of the yurt.

  • Lofts are a great way to save space and make use of the yurts spacious interior. It is nice to use lightweight furniture for flexibility and keep your colors light and airy.

  • Walls that roll can be built in small sections and can perform a multitude of functions. They can be rolled into any place as they are needed or rolled to the side for meetings or exercise space.

Let your imagination wander as you consider having one wall hold a folding table. Make a wall out of a thermal mass to collect heat from the sun at the windows while you are away.

Can interior partition walls be added?

Yurt Interior partition walls can be added to provide separate bathrooms, bedrooms or kitchen areas. A local carpenter or contractor can easily build these walls into the yurt after it has been erected.

  • The partition walls should be freestanding and not rely on the yurt, but can be connected to the lattice wall or Snow & Wind Kit’s vertical supports.

  • Nothing should be connected to the roof rafters of the yurt, but the interior walls should definitely be anchored to the floor.

How do I add a bathroom?

If you have a larger yurt, you may to frame out an interior bathroom.

  • This could be done (after the yurt is installed) in much the same manner as in a conventional site-built structure or done more simply with fabrics hung from the rafters.

  • The plumbing would be brought up through the floor of the yurt into the bathroom.

  • Venting can be accomplished with downdraft vents through the floor or through the wall of the yurt using a flashing kit; often composting toilets have a built in vent that keeps the yurt smelling nice and require no water to flush them or septic to drain in.

Check local codes concerning composting toilets.  They are widely accepted in Europe, but like many alternative sustainable solutions, the US has been slow to explore and encourage some of these options.

Can I add a kitchen?

Kitchens have been added to yurts in many ways, sometimes just built into the perimeter of the yurt, and not sectioned off.  Others have created walls with standard cabinets and counters purchased from a local home improvement store or Habitat for Humanity.

  • You can create a curved counter along the wall of the yurt by using smaller standard cabinets. This way the only “custom” part would be the counter-top itself.

  • Often you can just take the counter-top and cut it yourself with a saw or grinder with a diamond blade (for granite).

  • Often people who have built walls for a bathroom will put the kitchen against that interior wall so the plumbing can be shared between the kitchen and bathroom.

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yurtmanI live in a little sustainable minded yurt village in western NC near AshevilleView all posts by yurtman →