The problem with “green” and “alternative” is the initial trendiness of it that lends itself to what can only be described as cashing in.
If it’s green, alternative, or healthy it seems to me it should be affordable, especially for low income families.
A lot of talk about alternative housing, and that’s a good thing as housing costs soar – an alternative being promoted is Yurts, a form of traditional housing favored by nomads of countries like Mongolia.
Browsing the net there are literally pages and pages of kits for sale or even on site “construction”, and in my opinion the cost is way out of line.
You don’t have to be in construction to know that the materials related to a yurt are significantly lower than that of building a house, yet they can run into the tens of thousands of dollars.
As to be expected variations in design and material are cropping up, from wood panel to mortar siding and even roofs, which of course will be reflected in the cost.
But I believe if a person was serious about building a yurt, had rudimentary skills and a blueprint they could accomplish it on their own – not just that but have the satisfaction of knowing they did it.
I’ve built geodesic domes in the past, something trendy in the sixties and seventies I am told, and architecturally very strong.
They are a permanent structure whereas traditional yurts are highly mobile, though mobility may not be the issue for current owners or builders.
A home, any home, isn’t to be taken lightly – people should know exactly what they want with an eye to the future and pursue their choice accordingly.
A yurt is a viable alternative along with several other options, alternatives people may want to explore.
I’ve lived in tepees, tents, cabins, houses, and even lean tos made of limbs, branches, and the like on one occasion when I took it upon myself to roam the wilderness for a few months, kind of primordial call and personal challenge, an experience I wouldn’t trade for anything.
Tree houses have an attraction for me, and I’ve seen some nice ones on the net, so maybe one day I’ll build one and live in it.
Ultimately I think a person should make every effort they can to trim the unnecessary fat from their lives, to be as self reliant as possible – not to live in a perpetual state of indebtness, to become a part of the environment rather than an intruder and in doing so I believe they would likewise shed much of the stress society seems to be characterized by now.