The Cole’s Residence, pictured below, that was featured in the October issue of Southern Living Magazine has generated a lot of buzz! We have received numerous phone calls from people interested in purchasing the plan. As many of you know we traditionally have only designed custom residences. While Frederick + Frederick Architects will continue to design custom homes, additions and renovations for individual clients, we are expanding our services to include house plans designed for hot, humid climates.
One of the main reasons we have not sold plan book houses is we carefully design each house for its particular site. It is our fear that someone will take a house designed face a certain direction to capture the prevailing summer breezes and site the house where it will not capture the breezes. Sarah Susanka of The Not So Big House series, has this same fear and addressed it in a Fine Homebuilding article. She suggested “that when we sell plans, we simply need to give information about the site characteristics best suited to each house. Although some people will ignore this information, the house they build will still, in all likelihood, be better than what they might otherwise have picked.”
In 2002 we pulled back the siding on an ocean front house and discovered mold, rot, and termites. One week our clients were living in the house and the next week a hazardous removal team complete with respirators and protective suits were dismantling the building. The house was less than 20-years old and was not only falling apart it was hazardous to the occupants. Granted, ocean front properties have the most severe exposure but the house should not have been filled with mold, rot, and termites. Within six months we had another ocean front project that was in just as bad shape. We immediately started researching why these houses were deteriorating so quickly and how could we build differently so houses would last longer than 20-years. We realized that it was time for us to share the latest discoveries in building science with a wider audience. If we are concerned about sustainable design, we need as many houses as possible to be build right.
Hot, Humid Solutions provides house designs created from the firm’s knowledge and experience of connecting houses to the land and building houses that thrive in a hot, humid climate. With over 25 years of designing custom houses, we truly understand what makes a comfortable, livable house. The plans presented by Hot, Humid Solutions are based on vernacular traditions and detailed to reflect the most current building science for hot, humid climates. Therefore if you want to build one of our plans in a different climate, the detailing of the building should be revised for your climate.
Today we are introducing the 3,200 s.f. Essie Curl, named after my great-great grandmother who lived in a dogtrot in North Alabama with her sister, Ezzie Pearl and parents. The dogtrot was also known as two pens and a passage because there were two rooms with an open passage between them. The prevailing breezes were funneled through the open center hall creating a cooler, comfortable all-purpose room. It is critical to this design that the dogtrot is oriented to capture the prevailing summer breezes. For plans and purchase information visit our website www.hothumidsolutions.com
Our second house will be the Ezzie Pearl, a 2,000 s.f. one-story dogtrot. We anticipate introducing a new house plan every two weeks.