Traveling through the open farmlands and ranches of Lovelock, Nevada can create a feeling of desolation. After turning onto an unmarked dirt road and driving into a seemingly empty canyon, our most recent off-grid Haven® home, powered completely with the renewable energy made with a small array of solar panels, appears out of no where. All you can hear is a babbling spring as you gaze at the endless 360-degree views.
Although the outside perspective appears to be of a small home, the 1600 sf. Haven® has two bedrooms, two baths, a generous great room and abundant storage of aprox. 300sf. The open living area of this Haven® home has wood grain laminate flooring and a wood burning stove. The entire home was uniquely designed by the owners. The liquid propane (LP) gas range (cook top and oven) and electric refrigerator are energy efficient and Energy Star rated. The high efficiency furnace is also propane.
This Haven® has 2 small solar panel arrays. The small 1.4 Kw system mounted on the garage roof has only 6 panels which are generating all the electricity for the home. During the day time, the excess power generated is stored in a battery bank housed in the garage in order to power the home at night without need for a non-renewable fuel source generator. In addition, it has a ground mounted solar panel for the water well pump system. Without the generator noise that most off-grid homeowners experience at night, these homeowners can experience the blessed quite that comes with living miles from the nearest pavement.
Inside the Haven®the appliances are all run off renewable resources. It is truly an off-grid experience. This is because our Haven® homes are designed specifically for affordable self-sustained living, comfort, and maximum energy efficiency, with minimal material usage for the construction and maintenance of the home.
Construction in rural areas that are miles away from the nearest power line is challenging at best. This home is off-grid, both literally and figuratively. All labor and materials for this project came from the Reno-Sparks, Nevada metro area. The Haven® saved the homeowners money, not just because the home itself uses about 30% less material for the shell, but because the panels for the walls were constructed in Reno and loaded onto one flat bed truck. The Haven® construction process minimized the amount of waste that needed to be hauled off the site compared to standard rectangular construction and so saved the homeowners money, as well as saved the landfills from the additional waste.
Another big savings for the homeowners was realized by minimizing the amount of time the framing crew needed to be on site. With the project a 4 hour round trip from home, most of the workmen camped out or rented hotel rooms. This home was framed, insulated and enclosed (windows, doors, siding, exterior paint, and roof dry-in) in less than 30 days. Cutting down the field expense of the workers saved the homeowners a sizable chunk of change.
For off-grid, rural home construction, the Haven® home is the ideal answer to the challenge of getting more for less; living large in a small footprint.
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