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Power House

21st-century technology and a classic look come together in a shingle-style house that produces more energy than it consumes

Vermont's homes and barns have a quintessentially timeless, rural look. When the authors, builders Bill Heigis and Hobie Guion, met with their clients, they were charged with combining this familiar image with the most up-to-date building technologies. Their clients wanted a house built with local, sustainable materials, powered by the sun and heated by the warmth of the earth. The result is a net-zero energy use home with a tight envelope around a lean space, heavily insulated and mechanically ventilated, and heated by a ground-source heat pump powered by a photovoltaic array. What else makes this house net-zero? A Metlund on-demand hot-water system, a GFX gray-water heat-recovery system, an Esse Ironheart woodstove, and a Kenmore induction cooktop, to name a few. All of this is wrapped in finely crafted woodwork, hand-troweled plaster, and native stone. Oh, yeah: There's a barn, too.

Power House
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