Tortoise Shell Nursery Visit

Model 2 Under Construction

Tortoise Shell Homes Visit

Yesterday I had the opportunity to meet with Bill Kastrinos at the Tortoise Shell Nursery in Rohnert Park, CA. In an earlier post we looked at Model 1 from Tortoise Shell Homes. On my visit, Bill showed me three of six, Model 2 homes under construction.


Simple and Affordable

Bills goal is to keep these homes simple and affordable. He has three models, ranging from a very basic unit to a loaded off the grid ready version. Tortoise Shell Homes has only been in business six months but word is getting out and he is looking to be very busy in the near future.

These tiny houses are built just like a standard home with all the electrical, insulation, etc. This model includes a full size shower, toilet and sink and comes with an instant hot water heater. There is room for a small washer/dryer unit as well. (see floor plan below) These six custom order homes come with oak floors, sky lights and pine walls.

A Company to Watch

I think that this will be a company to watch in the tiny house market. For more information visit the Tortoise Shell Home site or send an email to or call 707-206-7581.

Model 2 Floor Plan

Interior Under Construction

Interior near completion

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Daniel - June 13, 2008 Reply

This is pretty good. I saw the Model 1 before, but I like this one a little better. So long as Bill keeps it up, it looks like it’ll be competition for the Tumbleweeds. I see that this company is based out of California also. I know there’s one company in Texas, but is there any similar tiny house companies based somewhere out in the east coast?

Kent - June 14, 2008 Reply

Hi Dan,

You should check with Julie Martin of she is based on the east coast and has converted one of Jay’s plans and is selling them. You can also reach her by phone at 228.234.ToGo (8646).


RowdyKittens - June 14, 2008 Reply

I love this company. My husband and I will be visiting Bill in July! Hopefully, we can purchase one of the tiny homes by December. I can’t wait to see these little homes in person. 🙂

Thanks for the excellent post! Your blog is excellent. I check it everyday. 🙂

Kent - June 14, 2008 Reply

Thanks for your kind words! Please keep me updated on your tiny house purchase. Would love to hear about it and share it with our readers.


Tiny House News Round-up - June 14, 2008 Reply

[…] and comes with an instant hot water heater. There is room for a small washer/dryer unit as well. (see floor plan) These six custom order homes come with oak floors, sky lights and pine […]

Bill Kastrinos - June 16, 2008 Reply

Thanks everyone for the kind words. We are doing our best here at Tortoise Shell Home. One thing though, we really don’t see ourselves as a competition for Tumbleweed, just a fellow builder. They build high end homes, we are building more entry level homes. They build “BMWs”, we build “Fords”. Different markets. And I believe there is going to be an explosion in small house demand, so we are all going to have plenty of work! Thanks Kent, have a link posted on our website now pointing here.

Jason - December 3, 2008 Reply

Bill, I would love to hear from you, I have a small little piece of land in Laguna Beach and in Big Bear I’d probably need a custom exterior to fullfill all the CC&R’s

L Parent - September 23, 2011 Reply

Does anyone have a list of companies dedicated to building/manufacturing tiny homes. Next summer I am planing a trip around the US to look at floor models, show rooms, and the factory (place where they are built) to make sure it meets my needs and is built in a way that i can buy replacement parts from any big box store (like light switches/outlets and pluming)

East Texas Home Builder - March 4, 2012 Reply

This is really a very good concept. The tiny house looks very nice.

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