Aerial view of timber frame home by the seaLiving Off-Grid

Reclaimed timber frame home with a minimal carbon footprint

Located off the power grid, this reclaimed vintage timber frame reflects the owner’s commitment to create an energy efficient, self-sustaining home, using wind and solar power. Its design and placement take advantage of the great views of the land and sea.

Timber frame interiorInterior of timber frameRaising the timber frameReclaimed from a late 1800’s hay barn, the timber frame with original mortise and tenon joinery fastened with pegs or “tree nails” was raised in 3 days. New rafters were oxidized to match the original timbers. The vintage timbers were cleaned and fumigated, then finished with linseed-tung-citron oil.

Hemlock stairsThe heritage wide board flooring and hemlock stairs, crafted from timbers and flooring from the original barn, complement the intent to live in a house with low energy impact.


Exterior of timber frame houseInterior of timber frame houseOne of the design criteria was to create an invitation to experience the outdoors and take in the views not only from inside, but also from the sitting areas nestled against the house. A wraparound, elevated deck spans the entire east and south faces and features a 20-foot covered area which is ideal for outdoor entertaining and dining.

Dining tableDining area

The rear entrance with a large, slate tiled mud-room/laundry area has an open corner shower with hand-made beach stone tiles. This room was designed to house and clean surf equipment and is a very useful “wet zone” for hosing down dirty kids and dogs.

Windows from floor to ceilingStone fireplaceThe great room, dining area, and kitchen flow together in an open concept with a 28 foot cathedral ceiling and floor to ceiling windows facing east, south and west to the ocean.

The free-standing double sided wood burning fireplace can be enjoyed from both the kitchen and living room.

Timber frame kitchenKitchen with fireplaceThe kitchen with custom shaker-style cabinetry has a unique glass tiled peninsula with bar stool seating dividing the kitchen and dining areas.

Master bedroomThe master bedroom sits on the north east corner of the house and has stunning sunrises. French doors open onto a deck. Floor to ceiling dark wooden nautical inspired closets and timber frame give this room a Captain’s Quarters feel.

The master bathroom is finished with heated slate floors that continue into the spa style glass shower. The oversized corner soaker tub has been elevated in order to enjoy the ocean views while relaxing in the bath. The cabinetry in all the bathrooms throughout the house is made with reclaimed heritage wood.

Post and beam corner detailCeiling fan

The upper floor has three bedrooms with 10 ft+ ceilings and a full bath. The loft extends out into the great room below allowing you to experience the space from above and have a fuller view of the ocean though the gable windows stretching to the ceiling.

Bank of storage batteriesThe house has an off-grid set up. There has never been a period without power to supply the requirements of 4 occupants, hydronic radiant floor heating (main and second floor), computer, large flat-screen TV, elliptical exercise machine and all major appliances.

The energy system coupled with the building's envelope design results in a near zero carbon footprint. Its main power source is a 5kW Westwind wind turbine on a 100 ft guyed tower. There is a The timber frame house at night7kW back-up propane generator that is set up to come on automatically if needed. By adding solar hot water or photovoltaic panels, the system reduces the need for the use of propane to almost zero.

This 5 bedroom, 45' x 30' home gives new life to a vintage timber frame, creates new history, and has a small environmental footprint, all without sacrificing comfort, health or aesthetics.

Renderings of the timber frame homeFloor plan


TimberhArt Woodworks (formerly Acorn Timber Frames)
L. Daniel and Kimberley Reagan
195 Fuller Rd., Hantsport NS B0P 1P0
Tel: 902 684-9708 || Toll Free: 1-866-395-3838 || Fax: 902 684-9844
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