Get Green: Build Your Own Hobbit House

February 20, 2008


Let's be honest, the Hobbit houses from Lord of the Rings were awesome and we all wanted one. Maybe not to live in all the time, but at least as a vacation home or secret get-away from a nagging spouse. Well now is the time to build your own low impact woodland home.

You are looking at pictures of our family home in Wales. It was built by myself and my father in law with help from passers by and visiting friends. 4 months after starting we were moved in and cozy. I estimate 1000-1500 man hours and £3,000 (~$5,825) put in to this point. Not really so much in house buying terms.

Wow, I totally want one. I'm going all out Hobbit. Now somebody come over and help me saw my legs off below the knees.

Another picture, some specs, and a link to the build page after the jump.


Some key points of the design and construction:

* Dug into hillside for low visual impact and shelter
* Stone and mud from diggings used for retaining walls, foundations etc.
* Frame of oak thinnings (spare wood) from surrounding woodland
* Reciprocal roof rafters are structurally and aesthaetically fantastic and very easy to do
* Straw bales in floor, walls and roof for super-insulation and easy building
* Plastic sheet and mud/turf roof for low impact and ease
* Lime plaster on walls is breathable and low energy to manufacture (compared to cement)
* Reclaimed (scrap) wood for floors and fittings
* Anything you could possibly want is in a rubbish pile somewhere (windows, burner, plumbing, wiring...)
* Woodburner for heating - renewable and locally plentiful
* Flue goes through big stone/plaster lump to retain and slowly release heat
* Fridge is cooled by air coming underground through foundations
* Skylight in roof lets in natural feeling light
* Solar panels for lighting, music and computing
* Water by gravity from nearby spring
* Compost toilet
* Roof water collects in pond for garden etc.

A Low Impact Woodland Home

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