Rome businessman Ed Watters has had his hands in a lot of ventures through the years — and when there’s an opportunity to be near to nature, Watters generally finds himself all-in.
The latest venture for the owner of Watters and Associates Landscaping is Little River Escape, a tiny home development on Lookout Mountain. It’s an outgrowth of his position as the first Park Model Homes tiny home dealer in Northwest Georgia.
Sales Director Jim Hunter said the weekend-retreat development sits on approximately 50 acres in Chattooga County, north of Cloudland off Ga. 48. The first phase will be 12 lots with access to the east fork of Little River.
Each of the tiny homes is custom-made and approximately 400 square feet in size.
Hunter said all of the models are designed to be extremely energy-efficient and there are 17 floor plans to choose from. The typical models include a living room, small kitchen, a bedroom and a bathroom, with a small loft that can hold an air mattress or sleeping bag.
The homes are built on a trailer chassis and delivered ready to be off-loaded, leveled, and tied down, much like a mobile home. Hunter said the homes are classified as recreational vehicles under the International Building Code.
Sue Hiller, director of the Rome-Floyd Planning Department, said a tiny home could not be used as a permanent home, or even a guesthouse, in Floyd County.
“My understanding is that the tiny home manufacturers can build them either to RV standards, or they can build them to Georgia modular standards — but it costs more to do that,” Hiller said.
Hunter said Little River Escape will be equipped with a community swimming pool, clubhouse and boat launch.
“It would be a really nice second home or retreat,” he said.
The tiny homes dealership in Rome has just relocated from Martha Berry Boulevard to 511 Shorter Ave.
Watters said the new location would offer better visibility along with office space.