Saturday, May 24, 2008
Wow! Already the end of May, and just now documenting our adventure! By God's kindness, after 12 years of looking and praying, we purchased a 2.3 acre property in Brookeville, Maryland. This occurred in September of 2007. We hired the services of John Spears of Sustainable Design Group to design a single level, energy efficient, three bedroom home with an art studio that was also low in outgassing bad smells and chemicals.
Having arranged an 18 month construction loan to purchase the property and build, we hurried to get a building permit application into the county by the end of November when the county's impact fees went from high to outrageously high. Along the way, we also hired Chad Hackmann of UBuildIt Bethesda to provide estimation and construction management services for us.
We received our building permit on March 18th, and after getting our silt fencing in place and inspected, ordering a Jiffy John, and arranging for a construction dumpster, began excavation. Amazingly, the excavation was done in a day. Since then we've watched the cinder block basement walls go up, and are on the verge of starting the most amazing aspect of this house - making the walls from the excavated dirt!!
Above is picture of the site from May 7. The view is towards the south. The house is positioned astronomically North-South to allow for passive solar heating in the wintertime. Shortly after this picture was taken began the rainiest May on record- some 9 inches over the next couple weeks. This obviously slowed us down, but provided time to work on getting our current home ready to sell, and researching the many other decisions we still have to make about our new place.