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DIY Shelter-Kit Green Homes: Affordable and Doable

3/31/2011 12:00:00 AM

Tags: green homes, Shelter Kit, Green Home Kit

Robyn Griggs Lawrence thumbnailI could do this.

Since 1970, Shelter-Kit has offered pre-cut custom post and beam barns and sheds for assembly by people like me—who have no prior building experience. (The company says women make up a large portion of its customers.) Versatile in appearance and function, the kit buildings can be used as storage, workshops, barns, pool houses, garages, garden sheds and hobby spaces. My dream is to build one as an office.

Created individually for each customer, Shelter-Kit’s customizable barn-style buildings range in size from a compact 16-foot-by-16-foot unit to a 36-foot wide building. The kits come with the necessary materials to build a complete, weather-tight shell, including the frame, siding, sheathing, hardware, roofing and sub floors, and the company claims they can be assembled by two people in three to fifteen days, depending on the structure.

“The do-it-yourself nature of our product allows customers significant cost savings, but with the ability to maintain exceptional quality,” says Shelter-Kit owner David Kimball. “There are no added expenses of contractors and builders, plus since all of our products are manufactured at our facility, there is significantly less waste – which results in further savings for our customers, as well as an eco-advantage, which is extremely important.”

Shelter-Kit’s Green Home Kit, created in response to customer demand’s for energy efficiency and minimal environmental impact, uses biobased materials from renewable and indigenous sources when possible. The kits are designed with exterior materials that do not require on-site finishing and NFRC certified windows. Shelter-Kit’s Green Home Kit can contribute points toward ANSI-NAHB-ICC 700 National Green Building Standard certification.

A 16-by-16-foot barn begins at $9,950, and a 24-by-24-foot barn is $19,950. I could do this.

 shelter kit green house 

Shelter-Kit’s Green Home Kit was created in response to many requests for a kit that can be a major part of a complete green home project.  

 shelter kit unit one 

The Unit One is a one story 12' X 12' cabin kit, which has been in continuous production since 1970. It can be used as a standalone cabin or combined with more Unit Ones, decks or porches to create a larger building.  

 shelter kit scenic 

Shelter-Kit houses can be built anywhere. 

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