From the Ground Up

Hren Cob Home

While visiting Cob Projects, I found a link to Stephen Hren’s article in Home Power Magazine ( A Hand Built Home – From the Ground Up – download PDF article ).

Stephen Hren and his wife Rebekah built their cob home in the Piedmont region of North Carolina, about 30 miles north of Duram. What amazes me about this project is that it’s completely up to code and it’s cost is so little. The construction cost for the house was $10,950. Affordable? Yes. Later additions of a solar PV system, driveway, septic and well adds another $9,200. $20,150 is very affordable even for the most modest-of-means among us.

Labor, around 2000 hours of it, was not included in the ( monetary) cost. Stephen, Rebekah and their friends traded sweat equity instead of money. Which at $20 an hour, a basic skilled laborer wage, totals $40,000.

Their inspector allowed them to use Pima County, Arizona, building codes that detail “monolithic adobe”. Mark down another code-accredited cob home for the records!

I find it very exciting that cob is finding it’s way into the mainstream of modern housing. Much appreciation goes out to those trailblazers that are working twords building ecologically friendly, inexpensive, monolithic adobe homes.

From the Ground Up Hren Cob Home - Kitchen Hren Cob Home - Solar array