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Glass Tower House – It Has A Tree Inside

Houses May 5, 2016

Glass Tower House – It Has A Tree Inside

Want a full grown tree inside your house? How about four flights of stairs to walk around the tree all the way to the top?

The house was designed by Aibek Almassov, a Kazakh architect. I though about giving you guys a Pliny-esque account of how in the strange and foreign land of Kazakhstan they build in this style, but for that you might re-watch The Man Who Would Be King (although that’s Kafiristan rather than Kazakhstan).

Apparently, although this glass concept house was not developed originally because funding fell through, it has a new investor — a solar panel company.

The views of this concept house are 360 degrees, as you can see, and daylight would be, it seems, more or less unmodified inside the structure. The tree would probably thrive in its warm, sunny habitat. People might invest in sleep masks, though.

What do you think of the idea of this concept house?

Glass Tower House - It Has A Tree Inside (1)

1067 total views, 4 today

Rammed Earth: A Cheap, Sustainable Building Style That Can Give Your House a Distinctive Look

Houses April 28, 2016

Rammed Earth: A Cheap, Sustainable Building Style That Can Give Your House a Distinctive Look

How many of you have explored rammed earth as a building style for walls?

Although it is inexpensive and very sustainable, it is an uncommon building technology in the West. However, it is used in many other countries, especially countries where other building materials are scarce or unaffordable.

While rammed earth walls have a distinctive look many people find beautiful, rammed earth can also be used to make floors and foundations.

The drawbacks of rammed earth are that it requires powered tampers (or a significant effort in labor) and it can be damaged by water if it is not adequately protected from rain. In its favor though, is that it is impervious to fire, its strong and durable (not as strong as concrete, but still strong enough for domestic buildings), stores heat or cold well, breathes well (because of the clay) and is simple to make. It can be modified with Styrofoam or other insulation to keep in heat even better.

How is it made? A mixture of sand, gravel and clay, and moisture is poured into a mold or frame and is compacted with force. Lime, cement and asphalt emulsions are sometimes also added, as well as oxides to add various colors, or small objects to add texture.

Sustainability is another thing rammed earth has going for it. For solid masonry, rammed earth is possibly the lowest environmental impact building style.

The technology is ancient, but is currently experiencing a revival due to growing interest in sustainable building styles.

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Family Vacation House is a Traditional Design, But It’s Also a Modular Home

Houses April 28, 2016

Family Vacation House is a Traditional Design, But It’s Also a Modular Home

This prefab home was designed with tradition in mind. It was constructed decades ago by house designer (and furniture designer) Jens Risom, after renting for years on a small, undeveloped island off of Rhode Island.

It was designed partly as a challenge, and partly out of a desire for tradition. The architect had been reading architectural magazines say that a summer house couldn’t be built for under $25,000, and he wanted to show that he could do it. Prefabrication was part of this economizing. On the other hand, he had been renting on Block Island with his family for years, and when he found a nice plot, he wanted to build something like the A-frame’s he had been in as a kid in Denmark.

He was also influenced by his architect father and his ideas about stamped-earth building.

Some notable features of this design: well, besides the location, it has a 20-foot ceiling, cedar shingles, and a wall of glass facing north (replaced recently with safety glass).

The yard is surrounded by low stone fences, which is common to the island.

It was built using prefab in an era when modular homes were not usually held up as ideals of style. The home designer researched various modular home building kits of parts, and found one that had his requirements (Stanmar, our of Massachusetts). The parts were brought in by truck and then by tug boat, then by flatbed on the island. Photos by Floto + Warner.

Jens Risom's Block Island (1) Jens Risom's Block Island (4)

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Modern Mountain Home

Houses April 27, 2016

Modern Mountain Home

Taking a break from our pursuit on Building Homes and Living of finding inexpensive alternatives that will let us all get into a house situation — mostly we look at prefabs and modular buildings in our pursuit.

This mountain home is clearly not one that could be built on a shoestring. But, it is a kind of nice home design.

It’s by Pearson Design Group. Pearson itself is out of Bozeman, Montana:

“Focused on originality, we approach every project with a well-managed, collaborative process, which explores the opportunities and assesses the constraints in order to craft an architectural experience that evolves into an integrated and original story––a whole, a home, a legacy.”

The interior design is by Ann Knight Interiors, though. To contact Pearson Design Group or see more of their work, find their link at our Architects and Home Builders Directory.


pearson design group (3) pearson design group (1) pearson design group (4)

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Modern House Design Could Influence Your Prefab Design

Houses April 8, 2016

Modern House Design Could Influence Your Prefab Design

We’ve been looking at prefabricated home design lately and thinking about how we can find affordable solutions for the good people of our countries so they can all have homes. Well, this particular house design isn’t an inexpensive prefab, but we’re talking about it because its design could certainly be replicated or influence your modular home design.

The photo above shows a house called “The Glass Pavilion,” which was designed by Steve Hermann. It’s a 5-bedroom house that’s just under 14,000 square feet. That’s way more than most prefab home buyers are looking for, right?

Right, but look at the layout (picture above and thumbnail photo below). Not the entire structure, but the concept of it. It’s a flat, blocky house design, and the impression of the house and its aesthetic could be done with basic modular construction — even container bin construction — and could be scaled to the size (how many bedrooms) you want your prefab home to have.

Forgetting about the underground parking lot of the luxurious Glass House for a moment, the above-ground visible part of the house could be placed on simple leveling and blocking (without need for a concrete foundation).

To see more of Steve Hermann’s luxury home designs, find him in our prefab and modular homes directory. For more modular homes (click here).

glass pavilion steve harmann (1)

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Tekapo Shed Small Family House Design

Houses February 24, 2016

Tekapo Shed Small Family House Design

Small house builders and those in the prefabricated home market might want to take a look at this gable-form house design, which was a recent winner of a Small Project Architecture award.

This article has moved: Small Family House Design

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Tiny House Plans

Houses January 12, 2016

Tiny House Plans

This lovely home is ready for the right person to come along. It’s often difficult to find a small home that is so beautiful and has a classic look. Often people who are looking for these homes, end up in condos or apartments. However, I love the way it is so traditional, but with 1 bedroom and 1 bath, is perfect for the right couple or someone who is single and wants to enjoy a home of their own.

The home has a beautiful porch area that can be used for relaxing or enjoying the company of friends, family, and nature. If you like, you can add a garage to this home which will give you another area of storage, a hobby space, or simply to park your car and keep it safe from the elements.

House Plan 49119

Specifications: Pricing Information:
Total Living Area: 676
Main Living Area: 676
Garage Type: None
See our garage plan collection. If you order a house and garage plan at the same time, you will get 10% off your total order amount.

House Width: 26′
House Depth: 32′
Number of Stories: 1
Bedrooms: 1
Full Baths: 1
Max Ridge Height: 19′ from Front Door Floor Level
Primary Roof Pitch: 6:12
Roof Load: 40 psf
Roof Framing: Truss
Porch: 156 sq ft
FirePlace: Yes
Main Ceiling Height: 8′

Available Foundation Types:Slab

Available Exterior Wall Types:2×4

Check out the gallery of photos below (all images on our site are expandable, even the featured image at the top).

Find more from other house builders and companies we’ve indexed in our Home Designers and Builders Directory. You can search the company’s name and look builders near your area. And to see more houses, click here.

3953 total views, 4 today

Tiny Home with Beautiful Design

Houses January 11, 2016

Tiny Home with Beautiful Design

Tiny homes keep getting more beautiful and more efficient everyday. They are also able to mimic the style of a bigger home. Buyers seeking a traditional looking house but built as a tiny house, have many choices these days like this gorgeous beauty. The pillars in the front give this tiny home an elegant look and also makes it appear larger than it really is; this is the magic of tiny home builders. They know what to do to give the buyer the appearance they’re seeking.

This tiny home has a nice sized living room and is also equipped with a dining room area. The kitchen is larger than many in big city apartments. The colors are outstanding, in earth tones and brightly painted door. It’s a lovely home with two bedrooms suited well for a small family with a child or two small children. The second bedroom can also be an office or guestroom, or both combined.

Living room with size 3.0 x 3.0 meters, dining is 3.0 x 2.3 meters, kitchen is 3.0 x 2.0 meters and the two bedrooms having a size 3.0 x 3.0 meters each. The total floor area is approximately 48.0 sq.m. which can be constructed if your lot is 120 sq.m.

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Elegant Georgian Style Yet Simple Town House

Houses January 11, 2016

Elegant Georgian Style Yet Simple Town House

Taking a pause from prefabs and modular home building styles for a minute here, we found this simple classic styled town house.

“Designed by Stephen Fuller, Inc., of Atlanta, the home combines a classic, good-looking exterior with spacious, livable interiors. Called “Brook Hollow”, this traditional house features deep porches remind us of the Georgian styling. People who love an elegant yet simple lifestyle will surely love this design.

“Of course we encourage people who choose this house for their home to use a high quality steel frame instead of timber frame.

3,951 sq. ft. (additional 754 sq. ft. – garage)
4 (6 possible) bedrooms
4 baths

Dimensions 82 ‘ W x 69 ‘ ” D x 34′ H.

Find more from Stephen Fuller, Inc., and other companies we’ve indexed in our Home Designers and Builders Directory. You can search the company’s name and look builders near your area. And to see more houses, click here.

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Craftsman Inspired Traditional Home Design Has a Covered Porch

Houses January 11, 2016

Popular Craftsman Inspired Traditional Design

This Craftsman Traditionally designed home is just what many families are looking for. It has a two story house plan which makes it work well for larger families. The home plan comes with a covered porch available. A covered porch is normally a coveted addition to a home because during good weather it can serve as an extra room attached the home. The covered porch can also act as an extra relaxation space or entertainment or BBQ space.

With its 3 bedrooms and 3.5 baths, this home is well made for a family with kids or those looking to grow their families. Perfectly suited for a mid-sized family, the living area and bonus area makes the home appear to be even more spacious than it is. The bonus room can used as a guest room or home office.

House Plan Specifications

Number of Bedrooms: 3
Number of Bathrooms: 3.5
Width of House: 106 feet
Depth of House: 72 feet
First Floor: 2498 sq. ft.
Total Living Area: 2498 sq. ft.
Covered Porch: 656 sq. ft.
Bonus Area: 1062 sq. ft.
Bonus Area not included in Total Living Area Square Footage.
Garage Size: 3 Car or more
1st Floor Plateline: 10’0
2nd Floor Plateline: 9’0
Foundation Type(s) available for this plan: Slab
Crawlspace *
Basement *
Architectural Style: Craftsman
Exterior Wall Structure: 2×4 studs
Roof Framing: Stick
Primary Roof Pitch: 12:12

“Stone, siding and cedar shakes blend beautifully together to create a unique look for this rustic ranch style home. The full front porch is ideal for peaceful evenings. Inside, the heart of the impressive ranch can be found the open layout of the great room, casual dining room and extensive kitchen, boasting an 8’x4’ foot island. The central area features a two story stone fireplace with floating wood beams in the two story ceiling.”

Find more from Cool House Plans and other home and garden companies and builders we’ve indexed in our Home Designers and Builders Directory. You can search the company’s name and look builders near your area. And to see more home and garden,click here.

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