Designing a home for a single person requires a consideration of space. Too much space, and the occupant may feel overwhelmed and alone. Not enough space, and they’ll wind up feeling constrained.

This Goldilocks mentality seems to have come into play with the design of Sussex Street House in Perth. The project was for a semi-retiree who required a small home that made the most of light and space on a small block.

The steel- and timber-framed dwelling, designed by Mountford Architects, sits on a 295-square-metre site. Efficient design and construction techniques were employed in the creation of open-plan living spread over two levels. 


Inside the home, a timber staircase leads up to the home’s upper level, which houses a bedroom, bathroom and study. These spaces have deliberately been designed to take advantage of the views of the surrounding trees.


Downstairs, an additional bedroom and bathroom have been designed with the owner’s eventual ageing in mind. Additionally, a high-ceilinged living space opens directly to the north and uses cross ventilation, thermal massing and sun shading devices to achieve desired levels of thermal comfort.


Throughout the home, a simple palette of whites and greys is used, along with touches of black. A timber ceiling acts as juxtaposition to the white-painted walls.