Where To Look

There are many places to look for ideas as to how you want your new home to look and what you want it to include.

Plan books in the homes magazines are full of ideas.

You can also spend some time "in the field" looking at existing homes in your area.  Not only can you visit new home sites, but also visit open houses for used homes that are on the market.

Many cities have annual tours of "designer" homes where you can get a wealth of ideas.


These are just a few ideas on how to proceed with the planning of your new home.  Other areas you'll want to pay some attention to are how much of the actual work you will plan to do, who will oversee (superintend) the construction, and of course how you will pay for the project!

An active element may be a Solar water heating or Geothermal water heating.  A passive feature may be the design of the roof overhang which will allow the winter's warming rays, but exclude the summer sun. Some energy considerations relate to the orientation of the home on the lot.  Others pertain to materials, systems, and design.  All of the things done to increase energy efficiency fall into one of three categories and design:

  1. Control heat loss - caulking, sealing, insulation, vapor barriers, window and door design, etc.
  2. Make use of free energy - solar, hydroelectric, thermal, etc.
  3. Make the best use of purchased energy - heat pumps, high efficiency appliances, etc.

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