781 Craven Road Toronto

This unique detached home in Toronto is only 700-square-feet

In 2009, 781 Craven Road was nothing but a small patch of grass between two houses. Before that, it was a drug lab that was condemned and demolished.

In 2009 it sold for $95,000, which these days would get you a parking spot in downtown Toronto or maybe a storage locker. Now, the 16 by 73 foot lot is home to one of the most unique detached homes in Toronto.

"It is perhaps the only home of its kind in the city," realtor Nick Ntoukas told blogTO.

781 Craven Road Toronto

The front entrance. 

"The home is under 700-square-feet and fully detached. The original owner built it from scratch in order to live a truly minimalistic and energy-efficient lifestyle."

781 Craven Road Toronto

The bathroom with a rainfall shower. 

The one-bedroom, one-bathroom home was designed and built by renowned architect Andrew Reeves.

781 Craven Road Toronto

Sight lines flow seamlessly from inside to the low maintenance Japanese Zen garden.

The home, at the request of the owner, has this raw industrial look with a mixture of materials like concrete and steel that require very little maintenance.

The home was also built using inexpensive and recycled materials  sourced from stage sets or salvaged from demolished houses.

"These incisive efforts helped to mitigate costs substantially," Reeves noted in a blog about the home.

781 Craven Road Toronto

An illuminated rock garden nourishes a zen-like quality.

The home is very minimalistic to the point of being almost barren and cold, but this home is all about the little details – like the little rock garden under the loft stairs.

781 Craven Road Toronto

The living room with the wood stove. 

"The home is heated by in-floor radiant heating and a high-efficiency Danish Morso wood stove.  To cool the home down in the summer, the three skylights open up to let the heat out and the ceiling fan helps cool the air," explained Ntoukas. 

781 Craven Road Toronto

The unassumingly powerful Miniki Kitchen with dual hob induction cooktop, Blanko Sink with telescopic faucet and fridge. 

The kitchen is designed by Miniki in Dusseldorf, Germany, who are known for producing unassuming and minimalistic kitchens. 781 Craven Road Toronto

A view of the living room from the bedroom loft. 

Despite the home being only 700-square-feet, the 22-foot high ceilings add a sense of airiness and space to the small footprint. 

781 Craven Road Toronto

The living room walks out to the back garden. 

Reeves also noted that they didn't include baseboards to add the illusion of even more space.

781 Craven Road Toronto

The kitchen and dining area. 

"A decision not to include baseboards keeps the transition between floor and wall clean and draws the eye up, creating greater visual space," he explained.

781 Craven Road Toronto

The laundry is hidden behind sliding doors in the bathroom. 

The home also optimizes storage and built-in furniture to keep things from getting too cramped.

781 Craven Road Toronto

The bedroom loft space with built-in furniture. 

For example, the loft bedroom is outfitted with a king-size Murphy bed and has plenty of built-in storage. 

781 Craven Road Toronto

The sliding door to the bathroom adds a sense of warmth to the otherwise cold space. 

The bathroom is hidden behind a wooden door that blends into the home making it seem like it's almost invisible. 

781 Craven Road Toronto

The backyard has enough room for some seating. 

And if you thought the outside would be more maximalist you'd be wrong.

781 Craven Road Toronto

The garden is low maintenance thanks to the lack of grass. 

The home has a minimalistic and low maintenance Janpanese zen garden in the back. 

781 Craven Road Toronto

The floors are poured concrete, the walls are concrete block or white painted drywall.

The sparseness might not be to everyone's taste but the home is a work of engineering and architectural beauty. 

781 Craven Road Toronto

Windows are oriented to coordinate desires for view, natural ventilation and passive solar gain in the winter.

"Every square inch has been intelligently crafted with efficiency and openness in mind," added Ntoukas.  

781 Craven Road Toronto

A view of the modern roof.

Which makes its listing price of $799,000 surprising. Although, I have a feeling that might be a sales tactic to create a bidding war because this home is easily worth more than $900K. 

Photos by

Vladimir Kevorkov from RealtyTours.ca

Latest Videos

Latest Videos

Join the conversation Load comments

Latest in Real Estate

Here's why a bland suburban Best Buy is listed among Toronto's heritage buildings

The income needed to afford a Toronto home has surprisingly gone down so far this year

Developer to transform flame-belching industrial wasteland in Ontario into urban oasis

Construction of Toronto's mountain range-shaped condo nearing climactic peak

This $4.5 million Toronto home was originally built in 1935 for an oil executive

Here's how long you have to save up for a condo in Toronto versus other Canadian cities

Someone in Mississauga is renting out a bed in the middle of a kitchen

5 reasons you should buy a home in Etobicoke instead of downtown Toronto