What I Build

Below are some of the homes I’ve built. Click any image to view more.

Prairie Style

Fond of Frank Lloyd Wright’s Prairie style, the owners wanted a home with a design that blended in with the gently rolling countryside, with enough space for occasional visits from family and one that they could count on to have low utility bills during retirement. The living room, the gathering place of the house, is bordered by a curved, limestone-faced wall. [More…]

Small Home

Below are two photos showing a recent example of a home I built that incorporates many energy saving features as well as materials that reduce the long-term cost of ownership such as metal roofing. Click here for more photos.

   

Craftsman Cottage Style Home. The Craftsman Cottage Style home shown at right achieves significant energy savings through efficient green building design and construction. Click here for more photos.

For example, during a very cold Iowa winter, from October 2005 through April 2006, the cost to heat the entire home was $181. During this period of time, there were two sub-zero periods. The actual heating bills were lower than the $250 projected cost.

This house produces about 36,000 pounds less carbon dioxide than a typical Energy Star certified home. It has a 5-star plus rating, which is the highest rating available.

Below is a photo of the staircase that accents the center of the home.

Prairie Inspired Not-So-Big House. The Prairie Inspired home below offers similar benefits in efficiency as described above for the Craftsman Cottage Style home. Click here for more photos.

   

Mansion Inspired Not-So-Small House. The home featured below ignores all window shading and solar orientation rules. Yet, with exceptional insulation, air tightness, and highly efficient appliances and mechanical equipment this house became the first five-star energy rated home in Iowa. Click here for more photos.

Bathroom Renovation. As well as building new homes, I’m delighted to renew existing ones. Below is a photo of a bathroom renovation.

The original bathroom was nothing more than a windowless, cramped space under an attic roof.

While getting to know the clients, we discovered the husband needed only a place to shave, shower, and be on his way, while his wife wanted a private refuge where she could relax and refresh.

We enlarged the usable floor space by building a dormer in the roof, but instead of installing just a regular square window, we enhanced the “refuge” feel by vaulting the dormer’s ceiling and adding a half-round window.

The additional cost was minimal, and the new window better frames a beautiful view.

Not seen is the new glass-walled corner shower, but the claw-foot tub is salvaged and refinished, and the tub’s lower overall cost helped pay for the stone tile.

Video. Watch our Earth Day 2009 Green Home Tour Video (below) available on Blip.tv, Vimeo.com, and YouTube.com. This is a home currently under construction.