Kila, Montana — Green Home For Sale

Southwestern style solar straw bale home in Northwest Montana, Off-grid by choice, 16 miles to Kalispell, open floor plan 2 bdrm, 1 bath, with large attached greenhouse, amazing views, clean well water, orchard, gardens on 32 forested ac. Priced Rt.


Listing ID: 18762


  • Sustainable Home
  • Straw bale
  • Off the Grid
  • Photovoltaic (PV)
  • Solar - Photovoltaic

Annual Property Tax $1,383
Annual Utility Cost $100
Home Area 2,000 sq ft
Bedrooms 2
Bathrooms 1
Total Property Area 31.6 acres
Year Built 2003

Property Description

Raven Ridge fits well into its perched south-facing location. With its southwestern flair, it appears to belong in New Mexico or Southern Colorado. The home is a unique, custom-crafted, straw bale construction and is entirely powered by the sun and wind. This is a place where Nature is infused by architectural design into every living moment. The 32 acres offer expansive open views all the way to Glacier National Park while still having the feeling of being tucked away in the cozy privacy of a beautiful conifer forest.

There is a large 44'x16' greenhouse just off the kitchen for starting garden plants as well as growing space for fresh herbs and veggies for cooking. A 10'x10'x8' root cellar located out the back door provides a great place to store potatoes, root vegetables and other bulk food. Located below the house, are numerous large garden beds with well developed organically managed soils in terraces. Another highlight is the 10-15 year old fruit orchard that is just coming into production with 25 fruit varieties of apples, pears, cherries, apricots, and peaches. The gardens and orchard are surrounded with high fencing to protect them from deer.

The home's stuccoed interior provides comfort and warmth during cool weather and a refuge from the heat in hot weather. The house has beautiful exposed timbers harvested from the property and hand-crafted colonial style cabinets throughout. Both the master bedroom and bathroom are spacious with artfully textured walls that play with the changing sunlight. The 2,000 square foot open floor plan includes two lofts for extra sleeping space, reading, yoga, and an office area with a spectacular view.

Down slope from the house in the orchard is another structure, a 16-foot diameter 8-sided ‘hogan-style’ also built with straw bale and stucooed. Latias and a sky-light make this space a great studio. We use this sweet little studio for guests and summer farm help. The structure is on piers, nestled into a small aspen forest, with a storage area for tools and equipment under the hogan.

For 6 summers, we have operated Raven Ridge as a home vacation rental. Since the house is already set-up for guests, serious inquiries would be welcome to come and actually try-out the home. Rent paid would be put towards purchase at the time of closing.

Raven Ridge is adjacent to National Forest land for quick and easy access to hiking,mountain biking, and XC Skiing. Geographically it is located at 3,600 feet near the foot of a 6,000-foot mountain who's summit is 2 miles west. Nearby are numerous beautiful mountain lakes of all sizes, including Smith Lake bird refuge. And we're within 45 miles of Glacier National Park. Sixteen miles from Kalispell, MT, the paved highway and county road leads you to a driveway that is 2500 feet in length traversing accross the forested sloping property with 6-10% grades up to a knoll 240' above the valley below. The single lane driveway is graveled, with waterbars. the drive down can be challenging occasionally in winter when we receive rain on cold packed snow. The driveway layout makes it easy to se someone coming up the drive lbefore they get to the house. On balance, the view and quiet you receive up on the knoll we call Raven Ridge makes it worth teh trip up the drive. The southern exposure for active and passive solar is excellent.

Regarding our power system, we have top-of–the line batteries, and the inverter, charge controller, and electrical panel were all upgraded in early 2009. The Magnum 4024 inverter provides true sine wave 120 volt AC current up to a continuous load of 4000 watts. *The seller is a solar dealer and can train the new owners in how to manage the various systems involved in operation and maintenance. With the recent dramatic drop in PV prices, adding to the array would be prudent in order to save on generator run time in winter and provide EV charging in the sunnier months, Seller will help buyer with any desired expansion at dealer cost.

This home is for you if you would like any of the following: to live more independently; grow much of your own food; run a greenhouse starts business; work as a writer, marketer, or researcher via DSL; or watch wildlife and live in a beautiful forest. If you value living more lightly on the earth, this home will help you feel in tune with your heart.

There are some details about the contruction and systems that are listed below, that might be confusing, so we will clarify them in advance.

The house has a urine diverting batch composting toilet as well as a septic system (unused) that was installed to satisfy the health authorities. The urine diverting composting toilet is odorless (fan evacuates odors) and uses only a small amount of water to rinse urine drain into the grey water. The grey water is used in the orchard. Urine is pathogen free and a wonderful source of nitrogen, potassium and phosphate.

The insulation over the shed roofs of the kitchen and master bedroom have 13 inches of fiber glass (R-37),and over the main roof we used straw bales covered with EPDM roofing (R-43). The mud room porch is minmally insulated with R-13.

In addition to the wood stove being a primary source of space heating, it also heats water and stores it directly behind the woodstove in a 40 gallon insulated tank. This water can be circulated under the brick of the main floor to create radiant warmth during the cold months. The wood stove can heat enough water to provide for your domestic needs from November through April. During the warmer months propane is used to heat hot water heater until a solar hot water system is installed.

The only fuel costs are: 1) fuel for the electric generator used in the short, dark days from November into February and 2) propane for the cooking range and hot water heater (when not heated by wood stove use).

Included: Pacific Energy woodstove, high efficiency Conserve refrigerator, 36" 4-burner propane range.

Finally, if this home and property seem to be exactly what you have been looking for then please contact us. Depending on your financial security and situation we might be able to workout owner financing. Ideally we would like a large down payment in the 25-30% range to show your deep intent to stay for the longer term. We would carry a note for a term not exceeding 8 years at a competitive interest rate linked to inflation.


What makes your home a Green or Healthy Home?

We designed this home to be an example of what would defined a ‘green,’ near zero energy home. Every aspect of design and construction at Raven Ridge was given conscious effort to make the dwelling an attractive, yet functioning tool of warm, cozy, healthful and sustainable living. The home's construction consists of timbers thinned from the property, and the majority of lumber was purchased from a local wood products mill. The barley straw came from a nearby grain farm. All of the wood has been sealed with linseed oil, except the bedroom and bathroom floors which long ago off gassed from an oil based sealant. The main living room’s brick floor was sealed with an epoxy sealant. The walls are either lime plaster, tinted gypsum plaster sealed with shellac, or low VOC interior latex paint. This home is very easy to clean and maintain with no permanent rugs.

This home is very much a part of its landscape and more attached to its location on the south side of its knoll than it was to our family. We are sorry we can’t move it with us to BC, Canada.


Neighborhood Description

Rural location 6 miles from Kila and Highway 2. Brown's Meadow Road is a plowed for snow, paved county road. Kila has a K-8 school, a Post Office, bike path to Kalispell.


Market Area

Flathead County endured a land rush over the last decade. One reason for the popularity of Flathead is the area's spectacular scenery and abundant access to nature and recreation— thousands of acres of public land, Glacier National Park, and large Wilderness Areas provide many opportunities for hiking, skiing, fishing, boating, etc. Additional reasons for this area’s appeal include the superior quality of the medical services and hospital, and a recently enlarged airport to serve various airline


School District

Kila/Kalispell


Community

Rural Kila


Home Type or Land

Single Family - Split Level


Location of Home or Land

Rural


Elevation of Home

Mountain


Building Details

Air Quality

Agriculture in Area Yes
Industry in Area No
Air Pollution in Area No
Pesticide Free Yes
Fragrance Free Yes
Cleaned with Green Products Yes

Interior Environment

Heating System Hydronic Floor Heat (radiant)
Solar - Active
Solar - Passive
Wood Stove
Cooling System Passive Cooling
Ventilation System Other
Whole House Filtration None
Whole House Vacuum No

Energy & Water

Energy System Off the Grid
Photovoltaic (PV)
Solar - Photovoltaic
Water System Well
Wastewater System Composting Toilet
Other
Septic System

Construction Information

Construction Type Straw bale
Wood Timber Frame
Exterior Finish Stucco
Interior Finish Cement Plaster
Gypsum Board - Sheet Rock
Other
Interior Paint Low VOC
No VOC
Plant Based
Floor Material Other
Wood - Solid
Roof Material Metal
Other
Window Material Vinyl or Vinyl Clad
Wood Dual Glazed
Insulation Material Fiberglass
Other
Urethane Foam

Garage / Car Port

Garage / Carport No