Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Instant Gratification

So you want to build energy efficient, durable, comfortable homes but don't want to commit to a program?  Energy Trust of Oregon just released their Best Practices Pocket Guide to the general public.  This is a pdf file that outlines many of the strategies that promote energy efficiency.  Simple to read, simple to use, and filled with detailed drawings.  Print it out and keep it in your back pocket or store it on your i-Device for jobsite reference.  This tool is useful for designers, architects, framers, insulators, drywallers, plumbers, electricians, and anyone else who may touch the house.  Real estate agents could even learn a thing or two.

Istockhouseplans is an Energy Trust of Oregon approved program ally and has access to all these details and more.  If you are looking for an efficient house to be built in Oregon, contact us or look through our catalog.  All of our plans sold in Oregon include relevant details to meet Energy Trust's standards.

Get your copy at http://energytrust.org/trade-ally/programs/new-homes/resources/.  Scroll down to Best Practice Pocket Guide and click the link.

Energy Trust of Oregon is an independent nonprofit organization dedicated to helping Oregonians benefit from saving energy and tapping renewable resources. Their services, cash incentives and solutions have helped customers of Portland General Electric, Pacific Power, NW Natural and Cascade Natural Gas save nearly $600 million in energy costs. Their work helps keep energy costs as low as possible and builds a sustainable energy future.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Luck of the Irish...

...Is about the only thing that allowed this post to go out today.

Here's a wee little number that might get your knickers straightened out.  Istockhouseplans finally released the flagship of flagships to our stock plan pile.  We mentioned a while ago that this monster was coming out and this represents the last of the behemoths.  Everything else we release from now on should be around 1500sf or smaller.

The Goose Hollow 3242 is larger than the motherland and comes with a neat twist.  Instead of the expected 2,688sf based on dimensions, it comes in at 2,332sf.  The footprint is virtually square.  But like a doughnut, there's a hole in the middle and it goes clear through.  We had this great idea for a courtyard home that would fit on a standard (nay even substandard lots).  At 32' wide it could fit in 42' of urban space.  Several iterations were tried but most became unwieldly.  This time around we took some prior inspiration and mingled it with our holy idea.  What results is a large house with 4 bedrooms, 3 baths and lots of conditioned space - plus a neat little outdoor space.

There's not much more to say other than to ask you to check the plan out online.  Give us your thoughts on this pierced plan.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Can You Spot the Difference?

There are a strain of tiny trailer builders who attempt to create a dwelling that looks very much like a house.  Jay Shafer at Tumbleweed Tiny Houses is probably the most famous progenitor of this style.  His tiny trailer houses are employed most commonly as travel trailers and ADUs among other uses.  So we thought, what would it take to convert one of our full size plans to a travel trailer?

So there's some artistic license and maybe we didn't quite nail it but it was fun to convert one of our 800sf ADUs to an 84sf trailer.  Full dimensions are 7x12' with a 6' plate height.  Total height is around 11' from the ground to the peak of the roof.  2x3 wall construction allows for a cross-wise elevated bed in the back with a closet or low couch underneath.  One wall would contain a small counter and kitchenette.  Not quite the same layout as the Tumbleweed XS-House, but also about 21" less in height.

Check Dragonfly Trailers for progress of builds.