Home Plan Detail

Unique Passive Solar Home

By: Robert Hartford
Hartford Designs


Square Footage

Total living area: 3086'
Basement: 3086'
Main Level:2480'
Footprint: 44' 6" W x 69' 6" D


Bedrooms: 3
Bathrooms: 2.5
Master suite location: Main Floor


Levels: 1
Parking: Garage
Number of car stalls: 2
Modifiable to:
Crawlspace, Pier, Slab
Lot type(s): Sloping
Modifiable to:
All others


  • Passive Solar
  • Deck
  • Future Expansion
  • 3-Season Porch
  • Breezeway
  • Office
  • Large Media Rm.


Like all of Mr. Hartford's designs, this house was originally designed as an energy–efficient, passive solar home. You can of course build this house facing in whatever direction suits your needs, but if you're interested in building it as a passive solar home, please read the section below titled Passive Solar Info for specific information on orientation.

A partially covered entry porch leads you to a brightly lit foyer/breezeway with two skylights above and operable windows at the far end that look out to the rear. Two doors open to either the living area or the kitchen on the right, while another on the left accesses the 2–car garage. During winter months this space acts as an airlock entry. As you enter the house through a glazed door just to your right, handsome bookcases and built–ins line the walls on either side. The living, dining and kitchen areas are completely open to each other, and abundant windows line the far wall. A stone fireplace visible from all three living areas is located at one end of the room, and a long, open wall space allows plenty of room for media. In the corner next to the fireplace are a coat closet, a powder room, a staircase to the lower floor, and a door to the master suite. The ceilings on this level are set at 9'.

The open kitchen has a large center island with a sink that provides additional counter space for working, and a deep counter space for eating or serving. The dining area has four windows that provide sunlight and views, and a door that opens onto an outdoor runway deck. Double French doors between the dining and kitchen spaces open into a huge media/recreation room. A door on the opposite wall accesses a 3–season screened porch. From the porch, one door leads to an outdoor deck and another door leads to the rear yard.

A door from the kitchen opens into a large office with a trio of windows for plenty of natural light, and another opening leads to an open pantry with a broom closet, a utility sink, and a U–shaped counter space with upper cabinets. A glazed door from the pantry leads you back to the foyer/breezeway.

The large master bedroom has windows on two walls, and features two walk–in closets on either side of a hallway to the master bath. The bath has two vanity sinks, a soaking tub beneath a pair of windows, a separate shower (also with a view), and a toilet area with a privacy wall. A door from the bath conveniently opens into a laundry room with a linen closet and a utility sink. And if you prefer a secondary door from the living space, it would be fairly easy to move the sink and add a door in that location.

After coming down the stairs to the lower level, you enter an oversized hallway that accesses a full bath and two bedrooms. Both bedrooms have windows that bring in natural light and look out to the side yard. The original owners left the rest of the lower level unfinished, but if you decide to finish it out, the possibilities are endless!

Passive Solar Info
To maximize its passive solar design, the front of this house should face West (or East, if the house is reversed).

Floor Plans