8 thoughts on “Earthbag and Straw Bale House Plans by Owen Geiger”

  1. Owen,

    If you had to pick one of your designs with this criteria, which would it be

    has an architects stamp on it
    would pass codes,
    least expensive to build,
    room enough for a family of 4 (41, 33, 14, 9)



    • Virtually all of my plans could get stamped and meet code if you’re willing to pay extra. This will usually mean significantly higher costs.

      All of my houses are designed to be affordable.

      The best house for you will depend on your climate, lifestyle and personal preferences. So it’s a personal choice you’ll have to make.

        • I can’t tell you for sure because prices vary a lot from place to place. It’s sort of like asking how much does a car cost. But here’s some general advice. The engineering would be around $2,500=$3,500. That would get you the stamp you need. However, that’s just one step. You have to price the permits, hook-up fees and any other fees. The biggest added expense may be the materials required to meet code — extra rebar, cement stabilized earthbags, etc. This can push the cost way up. And if you hire contractors… well, there may not be any savings.

          Update: Calculating costs for a standard production item (car, etc.) will likely be much more accurate than estimating an earthbag house. Are you buying everything new or gathering recycled materials? Are you stabilizing your soil? Are you buying trucked in soil or digging it from the building site? DIY labor or hiring contractors? Developed country or developing country? Milled lumber or poles from the forest? The list goes on and on.

          • If i asked how much a car costs without giving specifics about what type of car, then yes it would be difficult to obtain a number, however if I said how much does a 4 cylinder jeep cost with the basic package, that shouldnt be a difficult request. I thought since you had plans for these homes and an architect that will stamp them that you should have a ball park figure how much it would cost to build them; not including permit costs. If your plans are architect approved then the cost of materials should be easy to determine should it not;the materials needed to build the plans as the architect has designed them?

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