Completed earthbag home built primarily by two women.

Completed earthbag home built primarily by two women.

“Building an earthbag home is possible to do even if you have no construction knowledge. The two women who built the earthbag home I toured built it basically all by themselves in about nine months and consulted an earthbag home book to guide them. They had people help here and there, but for the most part the two of them built their home, which amazes and inspires me.

The women noted that for their 14-x-20-foot home it cost them about $10,000 to build. For less than the average cost of a new car, they built a small home. I know you’re thinking that a 14-x-20-foot space isn’t a whole lot, and it’s not really designed for more than two people to comfortably live in. However, you can make these structures bigger and finish them out to look more like a traditional home. If you want to make your earthbag house look more traditional, you might have to spend more money, but you do have that flexibility.

As mentioned in the other Zing post about earthbag homes, these types of homes provide a pretty much impenetrable fortress. The women living in the earthbag home mentioned that every once in a while they get gale force winds or even tornados in their area. They’d sit in the living room watching trees fall around them and even on their house but did not flinch one bit. They even said a tree fell on their house and it broke in half! The only thing damaged in the house was the papercrete exterior, which can be patched up easily. Several times the women mentioned they can’t think of a safer place to be than their home during severe weather. I really couldn’t agree more. The house basically felt like a rock; the walls were basically 12-14 inch thick stones. [Ed.: Most are 18” thick.]

More at the source: Quicken

See their previous article: What is an Earthbag Home and Why Should You Build One?

I found this article while testing out the search engine. Their privacy page says they don’t record your IP address. With all the NSA spying revelations lately, I’d like to find a search engine with the speed and thoroughness of Google without the associated spying software.


Two Women Build an Earthbag Home — 9 Comments

  1. Yes! Me too! Check my face book, photos,album, little domes, thanks always to you , sharing with us all! Next year, we’ll make an 11ft, with mesh roll check it out next spring

  2. I have seen a house with polished bamboo on the walls that the wiring run through…looked for nice…all the 90 degree angles etc were made of bamboo also.

  3. Actually, in my plans for an earthbag home, I was going to leave my wiring and plumbing semi-exposed (behind a removable protective conduit) for ease of repair. I would hate to have to go digging behind all that plaster to find one fault. Another problem would be if you forgot exactly where you did the run, and then have to figure out if your stud finder is responding to your wiring, or to the barbed wire between the bags.

  4. Owen, the visible electrical wiring might not be an afterthought but instead a clever way of lowing the property value of a house. Each room with properly hidden wiring (power, cable, telephone, and cat6) can add $1000 to the property value.

    A two room earthbag house with exposed wiring might be worth $10,000. The hidden wiring variant would be worth $12,000.

    In my area the properly wired house would be paying $162 a year in property tax, while the visible wire house would be paying $135 a year.

    • Ha ha. That’s a new one for me. I’m all for sticking it to the man whenever possible, but people have to weigh this against the hazards.

  5. They did a good job and I really like the home except it looks like the electrical was added later as an afterthought. Embed the electrical wire between bags or stick it in the recesses between bags and cover with plaster. Running the wire through conduit is another good option.

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