Living room featuring a large soapstone fireplace, which is the primary source of heat for the home.
Prefab homes are often associated with cookie-cutter design and cheap construction. Bensonwood Homes, however, is a shining example of how prefab, factory made homes can be both original and sustainable. Check it out!
Bensonwood Homes has been designing and building energy-efficient and high-performance structures for over thirty years. While they provide a plethora of construction and design services, one of their specialties is the sustainably constructed, prefab timberframe home. The home seen here, recently featured in Eco Home magazine, is an example of the timberframe model.
The prefab nature of the construction is geared to achieve maximum energy efficiency, as the home is designed for airtight status and features sustainable elements, such as "a Renewaire ERV for fresh indoor air, dual-flush WaterSense-certified toilets, and an Energy Star-rated Voltex hybrid electric heat pump hot water heater."
What's interesting about Bensonwood's approach is that, while the base of the home is centered upon a factory-built structure, the construction process is still dynamic in that homeowners are able to customize a model's design and layout, taking the cookie-cutter aspect out of the prefab equation.
In the case of this Weston, Connecticut home, the owners wanted the feel of a traditional New England barn, so rustic materials, such as exposed Douglas fir timber and vertical barnboard siding were used.
According to the Bensonwood site, their homes are comparably priced to "other high quality construction" in a given geographical area. They are also able to complete construction of their homes typically in 12-16 weeks and build throughout the U.S.
As a side note, I love the fact that they show how sustainable architecture and design are not for the elite few (a common misconception) but can be a viable option for many home owners.
• Read more about the construction of this timberframe home on Eco Home.
MORE BENSONWOOD HOMES ON APARTMENT THERAPY:
• LEED Platinum Prefab is Home to College President
• Building Green's Top 10 Products for 2010
(Images:Bensonwood Homes via Eco Home magazine)