Designs - Common Features
We take pride in designing sustainable homes with features that are easily accessible for practical use throughout the life of the home.
We design rooms to serve several functions when practical. This allows us to reduce unnecessary spaces.
A home built from these plans will be convenient to live in and use and will also have enhanced resale value.
Energy and Indoor Air Quality - Towards Sustainability
To learn more about the energy-saving features common to all of these designs see Conservation.
For recommendations for on-site energy production see Production.
We make recommendations for improved indoor air quality for the health of occupants on each design.
These include Energy Star rated HVAC, fresh air supply air-to-air heat exchangers, low or zero VOCs paints, carpets and building materials, emission controls for moisture, radon, and particulates, and an airtight sealed barrier at the junction to the garage.
We offer energy and sustainability consulting, see Services.
A Living Room You Will Use
The living room is sensibly located to efficiently serve your living needs and also serves as a practical family room.
The living room is often open above to a cathedral ceiling.
A fireplace or high efficiency stove is centrally located to conserve energy.
A balcony study overlooks this space.
Dining and Kitchen with Daylighting
The kitchen and dining room face east and south for brighter mornings.
The dining room is close to the kitchen for easy access and convenience.
From the kitchen you can see into the dining room while preparing meals,
providing a friendly and open atmosphere
(and a practical way to keep an eye on children).
Master Bedroom on First Floor
Many owners want their bedroom on the first floor.
This is a practical feature appreciated by families at all stages of life - including new families, parents with older children, and seniors.
Two people (or a couple with a young child) can have all of their basic needs met on the first floor.
The washer/dryer is on the first floor as well.
Breezeway Summer Cooling
For many of the designs we link the house to the garage with a three-season breezeway.
Operable glass/screen doors provide cooling in hot weather.
By setting the garage at an angle with respect to the house we naturally induce air movement for cooling through this area.