What is a Poem Home?

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Poem Homes maximize space in a modest footprint.

With an informal, open plan on one level, accessibility is easy—no matter your physical ability. Bedroom suites flank a common area giving you flexibility whether you’re a couple with frequent guests, a family with kids, two singles sharing living space, or a professional with a home office. Wasted spaces, like hallways, are eliminated and boxy closets are replaced with plenty of built-in storage. Your screen porch and two car garage are just a few steps away.

Poem Homes are comfortable and healthful.

Walls and ceilings are air-sealed and super-insulated to eliminate drafts and cold spots, so heat is retained in winter and coolness in summer. An insulated slab absorbs passive solar heat on sunny winter days, radiating it back into the rooms as air temperatures drop. South-facing windows are shaded in summer and when open, work with high north-facing windows to promote summertime cooling.

Ultra-low or nontoxic materials and finishes minimize off-gassing, and a continuous stream of filtered fresh air removes odors and excess moisture. The garage is semi-detached to eliminate harmful fumes from entering the house. Wall and ceiling cavities stay dry and free of condensation, mold, mildew, and bug/rodent infestations that can make indoor air unsafe to breathe. An under-slab ventilation system whisks away radon, a cancer-causing natural gas common in many soils

Poem Homes use resources wisely.

Mechanical systems are fossil-fuel free and powered by an on-site solar photovoltaic (PV) array sized to meet yearly utility bills. The tight, thick thermal envelope acts like a thermos, needing only the smallest input of heat or coolness to maintain even temperatures. Appliances and lighting are energy-efficient. Plumbing fixtures conserve both hot and cold water. Products are selected for quality, long service life, ease of control, and ultra-quiet operation.

Materials are selected for low environmental impact, recycled or recyclable content, minimal packaging, and from salvage or local sources. Foam and fiberglass are minimized in favor of bio-degradable materials like dense-pack cellulose. Expert installation and quality products mean long-term durability—minimizing future repair, replacement, and landfill waste.

Poem Homes are at home in the landscape.

A Poem Home responds to the unique features of your site with practical solutions that enhance energy efficiency and preserve natural resources. By facing south, the house absorbs free solar heat through large windows all winter long. When the sun is high in the sky come summer, deep overhangs or trellises provide cooling shade.

Rain is collected for irrigation or diverted through swales and rain-gardens to recharge the aquifer, filter pollutants, cool the air through evapotranspiration, and prevent soil erosion. A permeable concrete driveway reduces storm water runoff, stays drier in winter, and melts snow faster—requiring less salt.

Careful placement of trees and shrubs provides shade and funnels breezes in summer while blocking driving winds and snow in winter. Gardens, prairie plants, and no-mow grasses enhance the biodiversity of even the smallest lot, inviting the earth’s creatures (and you), home.

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