Self-sustaining Billings home nearly complete – KTVQ TV, Oct. 3, 2015

October 4, 2015

Categories: Clean Energy, Member news, News, Northern Plains Resource Council

By David Jay

BILLINGS – No electricity bill. No gas bill. No water bill. And no garbage.

A Billings man is building what may be the only house in the country to be self-sustaining with energy and waste.

Randy Hafer showed the Urban Frontier House at a Northern Plains Resource Council meeting on Friday.

Hafer and his wife Janna work for High Plains Architects and he said this home has been a dream of his.

“I’ve been thinking about this for literally decades,” Hafer said. “And Jana and I have been thinking about this very specifically on this lot since 2009.   We’re both really excited and thrilled that it’s getting here and very excited about what’s going to mean to be here and learn once we’re here.”

Members of the Northern Plains Resource Council are also excited about what may be the only home of its kind in the country.

“This is a great example of what can be done,” said Ed Gulick, chair for Northern Plains Clean Energy Task Force. “The vision can become a reality, is a reality.

Part of the idea with this house is the insulation will make it comfortable in hot and cold weather.

“Put this extra layer of foam out here, so we have no thermal bridge,” Hafer said. “This makes for an incredibly well-insulated, very tight building envelope. There will be virtually no air leakage in here at all.”

The insulation, along with efficient lighting and appliances, will allow the Hafers to use solar and wind energy.

“The combination of the two and the size of those two systems, we anticipate generating about 300 kilowatt hours a month,” Hafer said. “And that’s about what we use every month.”

“Energy efficiency is huge,” Gulick said. “That’s the foundation of making this all possible.”

“One of the things I’m most excited about is when we move in here, we have only one bill left, which is the internet,” Hafer said.

And he may even eliminate that bill.

Hafer said the plan is to celebrate Thanksgiving in the home and it could be ready for move-in by Christmas.

220 South 27th Street, Suite A
Billings, Montana 59101
(406) 248-1154