This project has been in the works for over three years.
We are building on land that goes back in Cath's family to the days when Ohio was frontier. After wasting over $20K on an architect we threw out those plans and purchased a set off of the Internet for about $1K. We then learned that those plans were not buildable in Ohio without major revisions.
We implemented the required revisions, only to discover that the house was quite a bit out of our budget.
We redesigned again keeping in mind specific building practices that would significantly reduce the cost, yet preserve the features we were most interested in.
Hasbrouck Engineering was kind enough to provide us with a PDF format of
the essential part of our plans, which we share here:
Note: We changed the windows on the South side and the West side of the living room space at the last minute - those changes are not reflected here.
We had a few more challenges to address. The result of over a century
of non-sustainable agricultural practices on our lot, combined with the
natural geography of our site, was that we have only a few inches of top
soil. Not enough to install a leach bed septic system. We hired a soil
scientist to analyze our soil to help engineer an evaporative mound system.
Here are a few snapshots of the soil test.
The record low interest rates created a huge backlog at the bank which delayed our mortgage process by well over a month.
Finally we "broke ground" on October 7, 2002. We had put most of the 600 foot driveway in last December. Breaking ground involved initial grading of our house site. Because we have opted to not install a basement, building the house on a slab, this process went fairly quickly.
Note: Many of these pages are large and can take a long time to download.
We are building a garden shed across the driveway from the garage. - Updated 16 Nov 2002 - and 30 April 2006
We are also installing a home wind energy system (windmill). - Updated 16 Nov 2002 -