25+ Shipping Container House Plans

Container homes are a very popular trend in design and architecture today. Using a storage container as a living area might seem like a wild idea, but you might be surprised at just how practical it can be. Modern shipping container homes are so sophisticated that they even rival the traditional home. You can have everything from a basic house for simple living, to a large, luxurious container estate. In this article, we focus on these homes, and help you…

Read More

Cheap Off-Grid Cabin Built For Under $300

Alyssa Craft and Jesse Stafford completed a cheap off-grid cabin-add-on to the trailer they are living in while setting up their homestead in the Western US. The cabin was built to allow them to heat the air around the trailer and prevent the plumbing, and themselves, from freezing during the snowy winter months. The majority of the building materials for the cabin are reclaimed from a demolition project and found by scouring the internet, thus the low cost. Alyssa and…

Read More

Bamboo – The ABCs of Green Building Materials

Bamboo is a truly remarkable green building material. It’s twice as strong as concrete and slightly stronger than steel. It’s also a renewable resource that needs little energy to grow, prevents soil erosion, provides biomass, offers wildlife refuge, and produces a healthy food supply for both wildlife and humans. Offering significant remediation from the effects of climate change, bamboo produces more oxygen than other plants, and captures higher amounts of CO2. The first harvest can be taken in three to…

Read More

Visit A Small Writer’s Shed & Haven In London

A visit to Surman Weston reveals a delightful small writer’s shed situated in the heart of London. Surman Weston has indicated their firm was “…commissioned by an author and illustrator to design & build a ‘writer’s shed’ in the borough of Hackney. Capitalizing on their multi-disciplinary backgrounds the firm acted as designers, project managers, and lead contractors.” Simply take a step inside to get the feel of this tiny space. The result inspires one to hide inside, lock the door, and…

Read More

An Eco-Lodge “Touching the Earth Lightly”

Originally published on EdenKeeper.org Constructed with an eagle’s loft in mind, a newly renovated eco-lodge in South Africa offers a bird’s-eye view from a well-feathered nest. Overlooking lush vistas of Kruger National Park wildlife refuge, the view is so vast you might easily be inspired to sing a hymn in praise of Creation. Singita Lebombo Eco-Lodge lets you sleep in an “eagle’s nest.” Credit: Singita.com Singita Lebombo Eco-Lodge Resort Singita Lebombo Eco-Lodge Resort resides within 33,000 acres of private game…

Read More

On The Smaller Side Of Houses, Meet GreenPod

A recent visit to treehugger has provided us with a great resource for the smaller side of the housing spectrum: GreenPod. It appears modular and prefab homes are finally gaining some mainstream traction, states treehugger author Kimberley Mok. For people interested in getting an eco-friendly home relatively quick, going prefab can be an easier route with less headaches. “Woman-owned GreenPod Development, LLC creates green-jobs by building new modular and sitebuilt homes with healthy interiors and furnishings. GreenPod assures basic human needs: clean water,…

Read More

Thermoslate Solar Thermal System Integrates Unseen Into Slate Roof

The Thermoslate solar thermal system from Spanish slate company Cupa Pizarras is worth observing. Here’s why:  a structure’s slate roof can absorb a massive amount of heat and because of this stone, it has good thermal mass and holds it for some time, reports treehugger. In the Thermoslate system, slate roof tiles are integrated with thermal cells where heat is collected. The end product supplies hot water which can be used for various domestic purposes, including solar water heating. As shown in this…

Read More

Net-Zero Home Kits Available From Acre

For those ready to build a net-zero home, Acre, might be a good place to start looking. The Acre website states this company addresses architecture and construction from an entirely new perspective. “We want to replace today’s out-of-date houses with innovative, attainable, high-quality homes that are better for people and the planet. Our goal is to give families back the freedom to prioritize what matters most to them – and a home that reflects these values.” In terms of a net-zero design approach to…

Read More

Hobbit House Micro-Community Growing In Washington

Inspired by the earth-sheltered tiny homes, often called Hobbit Houses, created by Simon Dale and others, designer, dressmaker and tiny house expert Kristie Wolfe is building a micro-community of three houses in Chelan, Washington. The first Hobbit Home is complete, and Wolfe hopes to have the other two done by the middle of 2016. Wolfe’s Hobbit House is located on a 5.5 acre plot, and built into the mountainside so completely that it could be easy to miss on first…

Read More
Winner of the tiny house competition

Chicago Tiny House Design Competition Winners

The winners of the Chicago AIA’s tiny house design competition were announced recently. Launched in November 2015, the competition solicited entries to address young adult homelessness in Chicago as part of the Tiny Homes Summit. The winning entry, “A House for Living In,” is composed of 11 336-square-foot units and one interior community space gathered around a central courtyard. The project costs an estimated $73 per square foot, which is substantially less expensive than typical affordable housing, which is in the…

Read More

A Shipping Container Home With Solar Power: The Jagpod

This post, written by Jake Richardson, recently appeared on our sister site, Cleantechnica. The founder of Jaguar Containers, William Coit, has created shipping container homes with solar power systems and is currently running an Indiegogo campaign. Mr. Coit answered some questions about his shipping container homes for Cleantechnica. How many square feet of living space does a Jagpod have? The 20 ft. unit has 144 square feet and the 40 ft. unit has 300 square feet of living space. The 20-foot…

Read More

Remarkable $20K Houses From Rural Studio

Auburn University’s design team at Rural Studio has achieved the lofty goal of building affordable houses for somebody living below the poverty line. Here’s how: The team did so by completing two pilot project houses priced at $20,000 apiece. Materials for the homes totaled $14,000 each. The Design Challenge For over a decade, architecture students at Rural Studio, Auburn University’s design-build program in West Alabama have worked on a daunting problem, reports FastCompany. “How do you design a home that someone living…

Read More
Team Orange County's entry into Solar Decathlon 2015

Team Orange County Focuses On SoCal Issues In Solar Decathlon 2015

Team Orange County’s entry into this year’s Solar Decathlon addresses some of the issues found in the Southern California home market, including the use of solar energy and landscaping without water. Casa del Sol, as their entry is called, is inspired by the resilient and diurnal characteristics of the California poppy.  It is designed with appropriate shading and natural ventilation to allow it to open and close in tune to the path of the sun.  Strategically positioned windows automatically open…

Read More
DURA House, designed and built by NYC College of Technology

New York City Team DURA Designs Stackable Post-Disaster Home for Solar Decathlon 2015

One of the teams in this year’s Solar Decathlon, is from New York City’s College of Technology.  This team focused on the issue of providing disaster housing that can be easily transported and stacked, if needed, to provide a high density of housing in a small footprint. Team DURA (Diverse, Urban, Resilient, Adaptable) created a stackable design to provide relief after catastrophic storms that can also be used for mobile and low-income housing in urban areas. “A lot of our…

Read More

Building Materials, Fossil Fuels’ Ugly Cousin

We still live in a time when we do plenty things that are very harmful to our planet. It seems we’re all aware that fossil fuels like oil and coal create a considerable portion of our greenhouse gas pollution. But many people don’t understand that we also do a lot of harm to our planet with the materials we use to build and remodel our homes and buildings. If you examine some our most prominent building materials, it quickly becomes obvious…

Read More
×