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New home design

LUKE BURTELL | Posted in General Questions on


I am planning the construction of a house close to the beach. The house will be located in Delaware near the beach shore. The front of the house is pointed sw and back of the house is ne. The house will be built on piles. The ground floor has garage, closed deck (unconditioned) and a mud room that has stairs that lead up to the first floor (conditioned). The first floor has 5 bedrooms and 5 bathrooms with a gathering room. The 2nd floor has 1 master bedroom and master bath. There is a kitchen, living room on the 2nd. The house is 46 x 60 and is mostly a rectangle.

I have been reading a lot on the internet and on this site about passive homes. I have built a few homes and would like to steer more towards this type of construction. I am looking at building thicker outside walls, spray on building wrap, intus windows and doors, ductless split system and an erv.

With so many rooms on the 1st floor I am concerned about the air moving around and hot and cold spots. I have read with a well designed erv you can move the air around with on split per floor.

Please feel free to make any comments as to thoughts on systems and the building envelope. One of the biggest issues I have is we plan to open the house to enjoy the breeze from the ocean in the summer. This would be hard to close up and bring the house back to temp and dehumidify when it gets to hot. We plan to retire in this house and only use the 2nd floor.


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  1. Aj Builder, Upstate NY Zone 6a | | #1

    Building that large and expensive a home, hire an architect. why are you asking for free advice for such a home?????????


  2. LUKE BURTELL | | #2

    Thanks for the advise. I thought this was a forum to ask such questions.... Love you guys that answer like that. I assume any and all questions you ask, you ask an architect? Ridiculous.....
    I have an architect that is drawing the entire house. I am trying to research the best ways to engineer the house to be a passive home. Or at lease a very efficient home. There are many ways to build the home and with this type of home, I was looking for input.

    AJ Builders, Not looking for your comments.......

  3. LUKE BURTELL | | #3

    Thank you for your answer. I was just reading through a lot of info on the site and came across this company. I was just filling out the info for the building envelope when you responded. Again, I do appreciate the response.

  4. Aj Builder, Upstate NY Zone 6a | | #4

    Hire a passive house professional. Internet advice can help you discuss PH details but what you pay pay for passes the liability contractually. There are PH consultants. There are builders that specialize in highly insulated construction.

    For a home like yours call Zehnder. The US rep is a great guy, Barry Stevens. That will be your best spent effort

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