Launch Slideshow

Image

The Nest Cottage

The Nest Cottage

  • Name: Nest Cottage at Serenbe, Chattahoochee Hills, Ga.Size: 1,100 square feetConstruction Cost: $200 per square foot Completed: July 2010Certifications: EarthCraft House Platinum; Energy Star; Building America demonstration houseHERS Rating: 32Builder: Martin-Dodson Homes, Douglasville, Ga.Designer: Lew Oliver Inc., Roswell, Ga.Interiors: Serenbe Interior Studio, Chattahoochee Hills

    http://www.ecobuildingpulse.com/Images/tmpF91B%2Etmp_tcm131-614946.jpg

    true

    Name: Nest Cottage at Serenbe, Chattahoochee Hills, Ga.Size: 1,100 square feetConstruction Cost: $200 per square foot Completed: July 2010Certifications: EarthCraft House Platinum; Energy Star; Building America demonstration houseHERS Rating: 32Builder: Martin-Dodson Homes, Douglasville, Ga.Designer: Lew Oliver Inc., Roswell, Ga.Interiors: Serenbe Interior Studio, Chattahoochee Hills

    600

    Chris Hamilton Photography

    Name: Nest Cottage at Serenbe, Chattahoochee Hills, Ga.
    Size: 1,100 square feet Construction Cost: $200 per square foot
    Completed: July 2010
    Certifications: EarthCraft House Platinum; Energy Star; Building America demonstration house
    HERS Rating: 32
    Builder: Martin-Dodson Homes, Douglasville, Ga.
    Designer: Lew Oliver Inc., Roswell, Ga.
    Interiors: Serenbe Interior Studio, Chattahoochee Hills

  • Smooth-finish, fiber-cement HardiePlank lap siding from James Hardie delivers a durable cladding that achieves up to R-0.51 per inch and is engineered to specific climate conditions. The siding is available with proprietary factory finishes that resist prolonged freezing climate conditions, moisture contact, and UV exposure to deliver up to 30% more fade resistance and last up to twice as long as field-applied finishes, says the maker. 888.542.7343. www.jameshardie.com. The EnviroDri system from Tremco Barrier Solutions delivers a permeable brush- or spray-applied asphalt-based membrane over the exterior OSB sheathing for a joint- and fastener-free weather barrier. The membrane mitigates air and liquid moisture transfer through the walls to maintain a tight thermal envelope but vents moisture vapor to guard against latent damage behind the exterior finishes. A perm rating of 12 is comparable to most housewraps. It fully cures in less than one hour. 800.876.5624. www.tremcobarriersolutions.com.

    http://www.ecobuildingpulse.com/Images/tmpF91D%2Etmp_tcm131-614948.jpg

    true

    Smooth-finish, fiber-cement HardiePlank lap siding from James Hardie delivers a durable cladding that achieves up to R-0.51 per inch and is engineered to specific climate conditions. The siding is available with proprietary factory finishes that resist prolonged freezing climate conditions, moisture contact, and UV exposure to deliver up to 30% more fade resistance and last up to twice as long as field-applied finishes, says the maker. 888.542.7343. www.jameshardie.com. The EnviroDri system from Tremco Barrier Solutions delivers a permeable brush- or spray-applied asphalt-based membrane over the exterior OSB sheathing for a joint- and fastener-free weather barrier. The membrane mitigates air and liquid moisture transfer through the walls to maintain a tight thermal envelope but vents moisture vapor to guard against latent damage behind the exterior finishes. A perm rating of 12 is comparable to most housewraps. It fully cures in less than one hour. 800.876.5624. www.tremcobarriersolutions.com.

    600

    John Neas

    SIDING
    Smooth-finish, fiber-cement HardiePlank lap siding from James Hardie delivers a durable cladding that achieves up to R-0.51 per inch and is engineered to specific climate conditions. The siding is available with proprietary factory finishes that resist prolonged freezing climate conditions, moisture contact, and UV exposure to deliver up to 30% more fade resistance and last up to twice as long as field-applied finishes, says the maker. 888.542.7343. www.jameshardie.com.  

    WEATHER BARRIER
    The EnviroDri system from Tremco Barrier Solutions delivers a permeable brush- or spray-applied asphalt-based membrane over the exterior OSB sheathing for a joint- and fastener-free weather barrier. The membrane mitigates air and liquid moisture transfer through the walls to maintain a tight thermal envelope but vents moisture vapor to guard against latent damage behind the exterior finishes. A perm rating of 12 is comparable to most housewraps. It fully cures in less than one hour. 800.876.5624. www.tremcobarriersolutions.com.

  • The Envision series water-source heat pump system from WaterFurnace is a closed-loop system that transfers the constant (about 50 degrees F) temperature of a nearby lake via a glycol medium to a forced-air heat pump, requiring less energy to meet heating, cooling, and domestic hot water demands. The Energy Starqualified series uses R410A refrigerant and offers a cooling efficiency of up to 30 EER. No outside compressor saves space and reduces noise pollution. 800.436.7283. www.waterfurnace.com.

    http://www.ecobuildingpulse.com/Images/tmpF91E%2Etmp_tcm131-614949.jpg

    true

    The Envision series water-source heat pump system from WaterFurnace is a closed-loop system that transfers the constant (about 50 degrees F) temperature of a nearby lake via a glycol medium to a forced-air heat pump, requiring less energy to meet heating, cooling, and domestic hot water demands. The Energy Starqualified series uses R410A refrigerant and offers a cooling efficiency of up to 30 EER. No outside compressor saves space and reduces noise pollution. 800.436.7283. www.waterfurnace.com.

    600

    Chris Hamilton Photography

    HVAC
    The Envision series water-source heat pump system from WaterFurnace is a closed-loop system that transfers the constant (about 50 degrees F) temperature of a nearby lake via a glycol medium to a forced-air heat pump, requiring less energy to meet heating, cooling, and domestic hot water demands. The Energy Starqualified series uses R410A refrigerant and offers a cooling efficiency of up to 30 EER. No outside compressor saves space and reduces noise pollution. 800.436.7283. www.waterfurnace.com.

  • CertainTeed 9555 vinyl double-hung windows from MI Windows and Doors feature 7/8-inch insulated glass with low-E to boost thermal resistance values; optional argon gas fill is also available. The units are Energy Star labeled with a minimum 0.60 U-value and 0.27 SHGC for southern climate zones. 888.417.1162. www.miwd.com. FLOORINGThe Navarrre collection from U.S. Floors offers engineered oak planks from FSC-certified timber sources with a proprietary Natural-E oil finish. The Toulouse line features a rustic look with 71/2-inch-wide planks and can be glued, nailed, or floated at, below, or above grade. The series also complies with CARB Phase 1 formaldehyde emissions requirements. 800.404.2675. www.usfloorsllc.com. KitchenAid appliances include an Energy Starlabeled dishwasher and bottom-mount refrigerator. The full-size dishwasher (model KUDC20FVSS) is rated to use 4.0 gallons per cycle (Energy Star baseline is 5.8) and 313 kWh per year; the 18.5-cubic-foot Architect II series refrigerator (model KBRS19) is verified to be 20% more energy efficient than the minimum federal standard. 800.422.1230. www.kitchenaid.com.

    http://www.ecobuildingpulse.com/Images/tmpF91F%2Etmp_tcm131-614950.jpg

    true

    CertainTeed 9555 vinyl double-hung windows from MI Windows and Doors feature 7/8-inch insulated glass with low-E to boost thermal resistance values; optional argon gas fill is also available. The units are Energy Star labeled with a minimum 0.60 U-value and 0.27 SHGC for southern climate zones. 888.417.1162. www.miwd.com. FLOORINGThe Navarrre collection from U.S. Floors offers engineered oak planks from FSC-certified timber sources with a proprietary Natural-E oil finish. The Toulouse line features a rustic look with 71/2-inch-wide planks and can be glued, nailed, or floated at, below, or above grade. The series also complies with CARB Phase 1 formaldehyde emissions requirements. 800.404.2675. www.usfloorsllc.com. KitchenAid appliances include an Energy Starlabeled dishwasher and bottom-mount refrigerator. The full-size dishwasher (model KUDC20FVSS) is rated to use 4.0 gallons per cycle (Energy Star baseline is 5.8) and 313 kWh per year; the 18.5-cubic-foot Architect II series refrigerator (model KBRS19) is verified to be 20% more energy efficient than the minimum federal standard. 800.422.1230. www.kitchenaid.com.

    600

    John Neas

    WINDOWS
    CertainTeed 9555 vinyl double-hung windows from MI Windows and Doors feature 7/8-inch insulated glass with low-E to boost thermal resistance values; optional argon gas fill is also available. The units are Energy Star labeled with a minimum 0.60 U-value and 0.27 SHGC for southern climate zones. 888.417.1162. www.miwd.com. 

    FLOORING

    The Navarrre collection from U.S. Floors offers engineered oak planks from FSC-certified timber sources with a proprietary Natural-E oil finish. The Toulouse line features a rustic look with 71/2-inch-wide planks and can be glued, nailed, or floated at, below, or above grade. The series also complies with CARB Phase 1 formaldehyde emissions requirements. 800.404.2675. www.usfloorsllc.com.

    APPLIANCES
    KitchenAid appliances include an Energy Starlabeled dishwasher and bottom-mount refrigerator. The full-size dishwasher (model KUDC20FVSS) is rated to use 4.0 gallons per cycle (Energy Star baseline is 5.8) and 313 kWh per year; the 18.5-cubic-foot Architect II series refrigerator (model KBRS19) is verified to be 20% more energy efficient than the minimum federal standard. 800.422.1230. www.kitchenaid.com.

  • Sherwin-Williams Harmony no-VOC acrylic latex interior paint delivers high-hide coverage with low odor and no off-gassing to promote healthier indoor air, says the manufacturer, while an antimicrobial additive inhibits mildew growth. The Greenguard-certified paint is available in flat, eggshell, and semi-gloss, and it covers up to 400 square feet per gallon. 800.474.3794. www.sherwin-williams.com.   FIREPLACEThe Sovereign series wood-burning fireplace from Majestic offers an optional forced-air fan for supplemental room heat and gas knockouts to enable a sealed combustion appliance, if desired. It is available in 36- and 42-inch opening widths in both radiant and heat-circulating models. The interior features all refractory brick to provide a realistic masonry look and a black steel mesh firescreen molded in for durability. 800.867.0454. www.majesticproducts.com.

    http://www.ecobuildingpulse.com/Images/tmpF921%2Etmp_tcm131-614952.jpg

    true

    Sherwin-Williams Harmony no-VOC acrylic latex interior paint delivers high-hide coverage with low odor and no off-gassing to promote healthier indoor air, says the manufacturer, while an antimicrobial additive inhibits mildew growth. The Greenguard-certified paint is available in flat, eggshell, and semi-gloss, and it covers up to 400 square feet per gallon. 800.474.3794. www.sherwin-williams.com. FIREPLACEThe Sovereign series wood-burning fireplace from Majestic offers an optional forced-air fan for supplemental room heat and gas knockouts to enable a sealed combustion appliance, if desired. It is available in 36- and 42-inch opening widths in both radiant and heat-circulating models. The interior features all refractory brick to provide a realistic masonry look and a black steel mesh firescreen molded in for durability. 800.867.0454. www.majesticproducts.com.

    600

    John Neas

    PAINT
    Sherwin-Williams Harmony no-VOC acrylic latex interior paint delivers high-hide coverage with low odor and no off-gassing to promote healthier indoor air, says the manufacturer, while an antimicrobial additive inhibits mildew growth. The Greenguard-certified paint is available in flat, eggshell, and semi-gloss, and it covers up to 400 square feet per gallon. 800.474.3794. www.sherwin-williams.com.

    FIREPLACE
    The Sovereign series wood-burning fireplace from Majestic offers an optional forced-air fan for supplemental room heat and gas knockouts to enable a sealed combustion appliance, if desired. It is available in 36- and 42-inch opening widths in both radiant and heat-circulating models. The interior features all refractory brick to provide a realistic masonry look and a black steel mesh firescreen molded in for durability. 800.867.0454. www.majesticproducts.com.

  • A 3-kW array from SunPower enables the potential for net-zero electricity use. The 215 (peak watts per panel) series panels achieve 17.3% panel efficiency to deliver up to 50% more electricity per unit, says the manufacturer, translating to fewer panels and lower costs to achieve a desired capacity. The Nest setup also includes a monitoring kiosk for visitors and the homeowners to view solar energy production in real time. 408.240.5500. http://us.sunpowercorp.com.

    http://www.ecobuildingpulse.com/Images/tmpF922%2Etmp_tcm131-614953.jpg

    true

    A 3-kW array from SunPower enables the potential for net-zero electricity use. The 215 (peak watts per panel) series panels achieve 17.3% panel efficiency to deliver up to 50% more electricity per unit, says the manufacturer, translating to fewer panels and lower costs to achieve a desired capacity. The Nest setup also includes a monitoring kiosk for visitors and the homeowners to view solar energy production in real time. 408.240.5500. http://us.sunpowercorp.com.

    600

    Chris Hamilton Photography

    PHOTOVOTAICS
    A 3-kW array from SunPower enables the potential for net-zero electricity use. The 215 (peak watts per panel) series panels achieve 17.3% panel efficiency to deliver up to 50% more electricity per unit, says the manufacturer, translating to fewer panels and lower costs to achieve a desired capacity. The Nest setup also includes a monitoring kiosk for visitors and the homeowners to view solar energy production in real time. 408.240.5500. http://us.sunpowercorp.com.

  • Image

    http://www.ecobuildingpulse.com/Images/tmpF91C%2Etmp_tcm131-614947.jpg

    true

    Image

    600

    Chris Hamilton

The secret is out: Living large—or at least in a large house—is overrated. Small footprints, both physically and environmentally, are the latest fashion thanks to an economy that now values thrift and conservation over opulence and waste.

Still, buyers outside densely packed urban areas might hesitate at the idea of the 1,100-square-foot Nest Cottage. But step onto the Georgia home’s long, deep front porch or just inside the front door, and any fears of claustrophobia give way to a true sense of serenity. Suddenly, small—even this small—feels just right.

Part of an enclave of what will be 15 like-sized homes within the progressive Serenbe master plan in the Chattahoochee Hill Country, about 30 miles southwest of Atlanta, the Nest Cottage is a model for builders looking for real solutions to contemporary problems of cost-conscious land use and tight credit to delivering a high level of housing performance on razor-thin margins.

That’s because the Nest Cottage, at its core, employs design and building practices rooted in Southern culture, namely deep porches that shield the sun and a floor plan with window types and placements that facilitate natural light and ventilation.

“These cottages are definitely of a Southern vernacular, but their aesthetic is derived from passive solar design, daylighting, and natural ventilation,” says designer Lew Oliver, who designed six models for the neighborhood, ranging in size from 950 to 1,650 square feet. “Those directives are intrinsic to their design,” thus defying a housing style label and enabling broader appeal.

Inside the two-story, two-bedroom, two-bath cottage, Oliver relied on spatial relationships to create the illusion of more space and actual roominess within the home’s small footprint to make it feel comfortable and livable. Specifically, he combined the kitchen, dining area, and living room into a shared area and flooded it with light. Two-story volume over that grouping extends the light, adds some drama, and enhances the perception of more footage. A guest suite occupies the remainder of the roofline.