So it happened that we've gone through a full circle of re-evaluating our priorities and finalised the most important ones. I am deliberately not saying all of them, as I was told by many that the very final changes still occur during the building process itself.
Now, the urge for shaking the project up a bit came to my mind somewhat naturally and you can read more about it here. This post is going to sum up the actual changes we have agreed upon with our architect.
We went back to our basics. We've always wanted our house to fit as seamlessly within the naturally sloping land as possible. Not to mention having a house sitting in a hill has been my dream ever since I remember. The floor level has already been set a little above all the neighbouring houses and the last thing I needed was a structure towering over everybody else. Yes, indeed I want as much sun and light exposure as possible, thus our decision to lower the roof about half a metre.
This seemingly plain decision brought upon us a cascade effect. The exterior design was simplified, more minimal, more barn like. The roof angle stayed the same, but the overhangs got shorter equally on all four sides what consequently centralised the roof position over the house. I still wanted to benefit from a nice roofed terrace and porch. Not having any shaded area right beside the house was unthinkable. We used two separate flat roofs to create shelter.
More like a barn:
I have a problem with box like passive houses. They allow for only two medium sized rooms and a staircase on the ground floor level. As I mentioned in one of my previous posts, I have moved several times and had a pretty clear idea about my likes and dislikes. Having a bungalow was my final choice. The question was how to put it together with a superb energy efficiency, not straight south facing position and a so-much-loved gable roof while keeping the size small, easy to build and maintain. I've been constantly unsure about the size of the house. So, we finally made it smaller.
We left the ground floor the same size as before, but discarded part of the attic. Since my husband works from home we dedicated all the insulated attic space, which equals to about a third of the bottom floor area, for his work and hobby, storage and perhaps a little general office corner. It can easily be transformed into a bedroom at a later stage. The whole ground floor area of a total 110m2 is dedicated to our family living. There is an uninsulated space left under the roof which can provide ample storage for non sensitive items. If you are interested to see our final layout, you can read more about it in my final design post.
The changes put my mind in peace. Another pleasing factor was, that everybody professionally involved in our project expressed their appreciation of our polished up version. This experience is another one of those confirmations that all is well.