Green Homes

PassivFarmHaus
Sep 21,2012 | Climate Zone 4A: Steeles Tavern, Virginia

By Daniel Ernst
When my family made the decision to move to Virginia, we agreed that somehow, some way, we would find a home that could comfortably accommodate seven people, across three generations. On a working farm. On a budget. Winding our way through an economic downturn, it made sense to consolidate our resources, minimize our family footprint, and maximize our efficiency.

Although we looked for months for a possible house renovation project, the dollars and cents of the market pushed us toward purchasing a site for new construction.

Grocoff - 1 - after front
Dec 14,2011 | Ann Arbor, Michigan

There really is nothing more challenging that I can think of than taking a home in a historic district and taking it to net zero energy. But it sure helps to start with the right home.

Good bones
When I asked Matt Grocoff, “Why this house?,” the first words out of his mouth were, “Good bones!” Despite the home’s age, the foundation and structure were sound.

Grant - 01 East View
Nov 20,2011 | Santa Fe, New Mexico

Michael Grant has been building, renovating, and designing high performance homes in Santa Fe, New Mexico, for almost two decades.

My wife Julia and I stumbled upon this dumpy little adobe home in Santa Fe, NM, which was for rent back in 2003. I thought the place had hidden charm; she was skeptical. After all, it still had double-hung single pane windows that dust could blow through, a smelly gas wall heater, and no insulation to speak of.

TerraLogos - front after1
Oct 14,2011 | Baltimore, Maryland

At just around 1,000 square feet, existing rowhomes in Baltimore represent a true design challenge. Of course, any redesign or retrofit should be green and affordable.

Streamlining assessment, design, and permitting

Sampley - twilight
Aug 30,2011 | Austin, Texas

Just after World War II, Austin architect began designing and building what would amount to about 100 custom homes in the Austin area. These -esque single-story homes had low-slung roofs, exposed roof beams (extending right through to extensive overhangs), characteristic clerestory windows, and really big wood-burning fireplaces.

Belcher - front elevation - after
Aug 01,2011 | Jefferson City, Missouri

At face value, 802 West McCarty is nothing special, just one of 800 vacant or foreclosed homes in a distressed Jefferson City, MO urban neighborhood. But you don’t end up with the team listed to the right without creating something special indeed: the deepest green Habitat for Humanity (HFH) remodeling project in the Midwest. “We took it from the past 100 years and will be able to give it another 100 years of life,” says Ken Thoenen of Ken Thoenen Homes, the project chairman.

Humble home, humble owners

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