Searl Lamaster Howe Architects, green renovation, Harbert Cottage, American Ranch Home, passive house, geothermal energy, prefab insulated walls

Located on a lakeside in Michigan, the Harbert Cottage was built in a classic American ranch style. Although its size and general layout were working well, it needed an urgent renovation as its sloping roof was caving in and its slab was slowly sinking. So the Chicago-based architects took the opportunity to reengineer and reinvigorate the space while respecting its original humble design.

Related: Rustic Wooden Alpine House is Powered by Both Solar and Geothermal Energy in Italy

The cottage’s minimalistic interiors feature exposed wooden trusses, polished concrete floors and white stucco on the walls. A geothermal well feeds a radiant heating system embedded in the floor while prefabricated insulated panels provide the interiors with high thermal protection. A great green renovation example, the Harbert Cottage has significantly reduced its environmental impact without losing its charm.

+ Searl Lamaster Howe Architects

Photos by Searl Lamaster Howe Architects