15 Off-grid homes that are as beautiful as they are eco-friendly

What is your idea of an off-grid home? We are almost sure that these next fifteen homes aren’t anything like what you might have imagined.

This first home is a stunning abode in rural Ontario, Canada. Sitting in the middle of a cornfield the home was designed to blend with the existing architecture of barn buildings already in the area. The extended porch gives you views like no other we have seen before.

This home with its sod roof might not look like much but the truth is, it harnesses old age wisdom. In Scandinavia seeing homes with a sod roof is not that uncommon, in fact this has been around for centuries. They help to stabilise a room and also provides insulation, negating the need for big heating systems. Lets be honest if it can survive centuries and the Scandinavian winter, it has to work.

The rustic Soleta zeroEnergy’s modular design (made from 97% recycled materials) offers a range of green options, but if you’re not ready to totally rough it, modern amenities are available. A geothermal water heating system, wind and solar power, water collection system, and LED lighting are just a few of the features that keep sustainability in mind.

Located in Colorado this stunning off-grid home has been partially constructed from shipping containers. The containers flank the sides of the main structure and house the bedrooms, kitchen, and office spaces. The home is partially solar-powered and built to maximize cooling and heating.

?Photo Credit: Mike Beauregard

Richard Carbonnier’s tubular, arctic cabin on Baffin Island in Nunavut, Canada was designed to be less intrusive on the land. The joined culvert structure can withstand high winds, and the pod-like foundation shifts when the permafrost does. Due to the tubular shape, heat is also circulated more efficiently. Solar panels, water recycling systems, wind turbines, and low-energy appliances give it that extra something.

“The Fab Lab House uses the resources of its environment — sun, water, and wind — to create a microclimate that passively optimizes the basic conditions of habitability.” That means the solar-powered, wooden home can be built anywhere you like.

The Stamp House tucked in the rainforest of North Queensland, Australia is a star. The six-pointed design juts out over the beachfront and is accessed by a walking bridge. Several areas of the disaster-proof home were left open to the environment, but the owners never have to worry about flooding or cyclone damage. The Stamp House has been designated as an official shelter by the National Parks and local agencies. A solar-powered roof and rainwater catchment system are some of the environmentally friendly design features.

Bellomo Architects’ House Arc is a 13 square meter and 1360 kilogram tough cookie. Those seeking compact, off-grid adventures should flock to the adorable modular construction, which is lightweight, but designed to withstand tropical storms. Bellomo Architects built it with disaster relief organizations in mind (it can be shipped in a box to those in need), but it’s perfect for anyone looking for a lifestyle change. House Arc is resilient, and the curvaceous, retro style — with large windows and eco goodies — makes it lovely to look at.

Meet ZeroHouse, the home in the middle of nowhere. If you’ve dreamed of remote living, but don’t want to put up with pesky hurricanes and flooding, fear not. The 60 square meter home can survive 225km/h winds, and the helical-anchor foundation system means you’re safe in water up to 3 meters deep. Solar power is stored in an onboard bank, so the home can sustain itself for a week without sunlight. Bring on the apocalypse! ZeroHouse also “hibernates” to conserve energy, has a water catchment system, and handles the homeowner’s needs like a rock star — a very eco-minded rock star.

Right now the JF-Kit House by Elii Architecture is an off-grid concept rather than a completed design, but it features some weird and exciting green options. There’s an energy-producing dance floor, a hand-cranked email station, a greenhouse that is watered by the sheer power of your thighs (we admit you will be doing squats to water the squash), and a hand-cranked kitchen. The firm calls these features “domestic fitness furniture.” The JF-Kit house puts you to work and is probably laughing at you while you pantomime a hamster in its wheel, but at least you will be in the best shape of your life!

We admit The Earthship community in the deserts of New Mexico might really be into aliens, but to be honest the sustainable homes they have built are amazing. The homes are built entirely from recycled and natural materials. Architect Michael Reynolds has built “independent vessels” across the globe. You can even grow fresh produce via indoor veggie beds.

“Smart as it is efficient, suitable for a family of four and a pet to live off the grid in comfort and contemporary style. It travels by train, truck, ship, airplane or helicopter, folded up and indistinguishable from any ordinary shipping container. Once it arrives, it unfolds rapidly to 44 square meters of self-contained, sophisticated living space with all the comforts of home.”

This woodsy cabin in Sullivan County, New York is an elegant, but eco-conscious getaway. Made from 100-year-old reclaimed barn wood, stone, and other natural materials, the off-grid bungalow has no water or electricity. The homeowners bathe in the nearby brook and use an outhouse with a composting toilet. The surrounding view is breathtaking.

Modern, minimalist design, and extreme eco-awareness. This home as a wind turbine, geothermal heat pump, radiant floor heating system, photovoltaics, and more.

Constructed with minimal impact to the existing trees, this Canadian tree house along Lake Muskoka features a swing and glowing, slatted design making it a playful woodland escape.

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