By Christopher in WA on 3/2/2002
After having a lengthy discussion with the author this morning, he
requested that I list features of my to-be constructed owner-builder
home and I am happy to do so:
1) Structural insulated panels for walls and roof.
2) Fully-insulated and conditioned crawl space.
3) Interior walls 2x6/2x4 with sound insulation batts.
4) Open-web truss floor joists.
5) Fully usable attic space with staircase (8:12 and 12:12 roof pitches
allow us to do this).
6) Living room, family room, dining area (no formal one), open kitchen,
home office/guest bedroom with bath, 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, walk-in
closets, mother-in-law unit with kitchen and bath, 2-car garage with
1-car carport/deck of of mother-in-law unit, 3,500 square feet total,
designed in accordance with The Not So Big House by Sarah
7) Heating, ventilation, and hot water are accomplished with a
Lifebreath-brand hot water forced air fan coil unit with integral heat
recovery ventilator, Turbulent Flow Precipitation HEPA air filter,
Takagi TK-2 instant gas hot water heater, 100-gallon hot water storage
tank, solar hot water roof panels with evacuated tubes (thermos
bottles), Panasonic quiet-vent bathroom fans, and Vent-a-Hood 1,200 CFM
8) Appliances are primarily KitchenAid, Dynamic Cooking Systems, and
Cold Tech (all stainless steel, commercial-grade (we love to cook).
9) Bath fixtures are primarily Kohler Fairfax style.
10) Roofing is MiraVista Slate by Owens Corning.
11) House looks like a "Classical Revival-style Wing-T Farmhouse with
Vernacular Undertones" (a house commonly found in the upper Midwest
between 1840 and 1880, including a wraparound porch between the first
and second floors.
12) Highly recommended books from Building Science Corporation
(buildingscience.com): Builder's Guide to Mixed-Humid Climates
(Hot-Humid Climates, Hot-Dry Climates, and Cold Climates). The author,
Joe Lstiburek (pronounced "Stee-bur-eck"), is the preeminent forensic
building engineer in the U.S. and has developed these guides to build
homes utilizing building science so that they don't leak, don't grow
mold and mildew, are energy-efficient, and are comfortable. I have been
using them for the last 3 years as an apartment builder/developer, and
they have saved my bacon!!
Good luck, Chris Vaughan