Build Your Own House

Passive Solar Homes

Summary: Passive solar homes use passive solar house design instead of solar equipment to obtain and store solar energy. Passive solar houses cost the same to build as any other green home design.


I want to build a small Eco friendly passive solar home. There are so many choices.

Which ones do you think are cheapest to build with the lowest expenditure on utilities? My goal is to live as softly as possible on the land, and as frugally as possible.

I want to say thanks so much for providing this much needed service! How very kind of you!


Hi Cecilia,

Thank you.

There are many passive solar design choices available.

I think what you need to do is to really study as many of the choices available to the best of your ability, keeping in mind that there isn’t a perfect answer.

The size and design of your passive solar new home will be the major factors in cost to build as well as energy consumption.

Since you will be the General Contractor you can adjust costs in one area or category to accommodate higher costs in another.

Everything in the building of a house involves or requires trade offs or compromise.

But, that’s the beauty of being your own General Contractor; you get to study what’s available to you and what’s best for you, your ideals, and of course, your budget.

Here is a small, architectural firm called Sun Plans Inc. that has been providing web-based sun-inspired home design since 2002 for the United States and Canada.

The architect and President of Sun Plans Inc. Debra Rucker Coleman, is passionate about the opportunities of the sun for brightening and warming a home.

D.R. Coleman has been a licensed architect since 1984, and has been designing energy efficient and passive solar homes since 1985.

In 2002, she received the “Best Practice” Sustainability Award for Residential Buildings from the Sustainable Building Industries Council.

Her homes have also been on the National Tour of Solar Homes presented every October by the American Solar Energy Association.

As you get further along in your project you may have more questions. Please feel free to ask.

Best of luck, Carl Heldmann, 2017