Essential Sustainable Home Design

Essential Sustainable Home Design

A Complete Guide to Goals, Options, and the Design Process

Book - 2017
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Perseus Publishing

Essential Sustainable Home Design walks homebuilders through designing an environmentally friendly home. Covering what makes a building green, a criteria matrix to guide design, material, and systems decisions, working with code officials, and choosing sustainable materials to keep the project goals on track from start to finish.

Design your own sustainable home

Many people dream of building a beautiful, environmentally friendly home. But until now there has been no systematic guide to help potential builders work through the complete process of imagining, planning, designing, and building their ideal, sustainable home.

Essential Sustainable Home Design walks potential homebuilders through the process starting with key concepts, principles, and a project vision that will guide the house to completion.

Coverage includes:

  • How to clarify your ideas and create a practical pathway to achieving your dream
  • A criteria matrix to guide design, material, and systems decisions
  • Creating a strong, integrated design team and working with professionals and code officials to keep the project on track from start to finish.
  • Key building science concepts that make for a high-performance, durable building
  • Primer on building logistics, material sourcing, and protocols to ensure that the initial vision for the project comes to fruition.
  • One-page summaries and ratings of popular sustainable building materials and system options.

Ideal for owner-builders and sustainable building contractors working with clients aiming to design and build a sustainable home.

Chris Magwood has designed and built some of the most innovative, sustainable buildings in North America, including the first off-grid, straw bale home in Ontario. He is co-founder and director the Endeavour Centre for Innovative Building and Living and co-editor of the Sustainable Building Essentials series. Chris is the author of Essential Prefab Straw Bale Construction, Essential Hempcrete Construction, Straw Bale Details, More Straw Bale Building , and Making Better Buildings .

Book News
Magwood shares insights from building his own house and building many others with people who are thinking of designing and building an environmentally sustainable house. He begins by setting out a new approach, which entails decision making, defining goals and criteria, rating systems and product guides, criteria matrix, building science basics, the design game, creating a design/build team, and the regulatory system. Then he describes structural materials for foundations, walls, insulation, cladding, roofs, floors, and surface finishes. A final section explores mechanical systems, including water, wastewater, electrical generation, and HVAC. Distributed in the US by Perseus Distribution. Annotation ©2017 Ringgold, Inc., Portland, OR (

Publisher: Gabriola, B.C. : New Society Pub., 2017
ISBN: 9780865718500
Branch Call Number: 690.8047 MAG
Characteristics: 211 p., [8] p. of plates :,ill. (some col.) ;,28 cm.


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