Steamboat home to be featured on HGTV ‘Tiny House Hunters,’ July 14
Steamboat Pilot & Today
STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — Heather Suchyta’s new home may be tiny, but it has a million-dollar view of Emerald Mountain and it’s providing her with her reality TV debut.
Suchyta and her new 295-square-foot condo at Mount Werner Meadows will be featured in a new episode of HGTV’s “Tiny House Hunters,” which airs July 14, subject to change. She can sit on her tiny patio and watch the sun light up Emerald Mountain across the valley.
Co-starring in the episode of the popular reality TV show are Suchyta’s mother, Maureen, and local Realtor Rebecca Bailey, of Town & Country Properties.
Bailey looked long and hard to find home listings that at least came close to meeting HGTV’s profile for tiny houses. The maximum size is 600 square feet, and Suchyta said show producers don’t typically consider condominiums for the show.
Suchyta, 21, and working as an administrative assistant/intern at Northwest Colorado Consultants Inc., as well as a student at Colorado Mountain College Steamboat Springs, was eager to get out of the roommate situation at a local apartment complex.
The process of being featured on Tiny House Hunters began with Maureen Suchyta.
“It was my mom’s idea,” she said. “My family loves HGTV — loves it!”
“We sent in the information, and lucky for us, they called back right away,” Heather said. “I think Steamboat caught their eye. We did two Skype interviews with the producer and (exchanged) a ton of emails and paperwork.”
Bailey said she explained to the producer that housing in Routt County is exceptionally tight, particularly at the low end.
“I told them, ‘I can find you a 600-square-foot home in Steamboat, but it’s not $150,000, it’s $800,000 and kind of a cabin-y thing on a bigger acreage,” Bailey said.
At one point, Bailey said the producer was contemplating taping at a real estate listing in Grand Lake, but she dissuaded them, and the show ended up featuring an early 20th century home in Oak Creek, which she had already tied up with another buyer, and a third in a rural area.
So, you want to be a reality TV star?
When the producer in charge of their Tiny House Hunters segment arrived in town with a cameraman and crew, Bailey and Maureen and Heather Suchyta all learned that being a reality TV star isn’t all glamour.
“We shot for seven days with two days off in the middle,” Heather said. “We filmed five to seven hours daily. We were worn out by the end of the day. I had a very hard time talking to a camera, especially about myself.”
The good parts?
“It was so much fun going through houses and giving our opinions.,” Heather said. “You can say bad things about it.”
However, Heather is loving her compact new home. The asking price was $125,000, and she and her parents bought it for $112,000.
“It’s a great feeling,” she said. “I didn’t even realize I liked interior design. I’ve had fun shopping for rugs and furniture. One reason why I wanted a tiny house is that I go to school and I work. Cleaning it is very easy, that’s for sure.”
The front sitting area in Heather’s new home has a versatile futon/couch and a storage box that does double duty with a comfortable cushioned seat.
There is a well-appointed kitchen with new oak cabinets, but Heather confesses she doesn’t spend much time there. The bedroom is at the rear of the home.
As a millennial, Heather likes that her tiny house uses less energy than a bigger home.
“I absolutely like how it’s a smaller footprint,” she said. “I’m thinking of becoming an engineer, and it would have a huge effect on me to use less resources.”
Although several developers are in the process of engaging local government in hopes of creating true, tiny home neighborhoods here, there is no real precedent for tiny homes in Steamboat. Bailey said it’s her impression that the popularity of HGTV’s “Tiny House Hunters” is actually driving demand for the product here.
“With the craze now, we do have calls from people looking to downsize,” she said. “It’s difficult to help them find what they are looking for.”
To reach Tom Ross, call 970-871-4205, email firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter @thomassross1.
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