South Green Homes

Dan Ernst - Thaxton house - exterior south elevation

Passivhaus on a Budget

Feb 8, 2013 | Climate Zone 4A — Thaxton, Virginia

When the time came for Jason and Stephanie Specht to find a builder, they started out with high ideals. They wanted a builder who wouldn’t skimp on the quality of construction and who wouldn't charge an exorbitant fee.

Since this was their first time building, there were a lot of unknowns and a lot of questions: As clients, would they be able to customize plans? Select materials and finishes? Could they realize their budgetary goals? Did the builder have a good reputation? Would the house be energy efficient?

Most of all, they were looking for a builder they could trust.

PassivFarmHaus

Farmhouse Style Meets Passive House

Sep 21, 2012 | Climate Zone 4A: Steeles Tavern, Virginia

By Daniel Ernst
When my family made the decision to move to Virginia, we agreed that somehow, some way, we would find a home that could comfortably accommodate seven people, across three generations. On a working farm. On a budget. Winding our way through an economic downturn, it made sense to consolidate our resources, minimize our family footprint, and maximize our efficiency.

Although we looked for months for a possible house renovation project, the dollars and cents of the market pushed us toward purchasing a site for new construction.

Sampley - twilight

Mid-Century Gem Revived in Austin

Aug 30, 2011 | Austin, Texas

Just after World War II, Austin architect A.D. Stenger began designing and building what would amount to about 100 custom homes in the Austin area. These Eichler-esque single-story homes had low-slung roofs, exposed roof beams (extending right through to extensive overhangs), characteristic clerestory windows, and really big wood-burning fireplaces.

Chael-Dover - street view

Historic Preservation – A Green Alternative: The Chael-Dover Cottage

Apr 21, 2011 | South Miami, Florida

Historic preservation meets green building at the residential scale in the addition and renovation of our cottage in South Miami. Located in the Cambridge Lawns Historic District, the cottage was part of the LEED for Homes pilot program and achieved Gold Level certification while maintaining the character and scale of the surrounding historic district.

A slice of south Florida architectural history

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