How We Constructed A Low-Price Sustainable Dwelling With out Reducing a Single Tree


“Preserving the previous to complement the long run and reside the current is our philosophy,” says Laya Joshua, a social employee and naturopathy skilled from Ranni in Pathanamthitta district, Kerala. 

And it’s the identical philosophy that displays within the Joshua household’s dwelling, constructed virtually 10 years in the past.

They are saying they wished a home that’s near nature and nearer to their hearts. At this time, the two,700 square-foot home, situated amid lush inexperienced environment, appears to be like precisely like they wished it to — in Laya’s phrases, “easy and rooted in nature”.

Laya says that as an environmental employee and naturopathy practitioner for over 30 years, she was very explicit about making the home as eco-friendly as potential. “We wished to construct a home with out reducing or harming any timber,” she tells The Higher India.

A front view of Laya Joshua's eco-friendly house in Ranni.
A entrance view of Laya Joshua’s eco-friendly home in Ranni.

What makes the two-storey sustainable home much more distinctive is the supplies utilized in its building. The home is generally manufactured from boulders, forest stones and roof tiles. The wooden used is generally previous or repurposed wooden from demolished homes. All these supplies had been procured inside a 15 km radius of the location, she says. 

Looking for the best architect

Although Laya and her husband Joshua Philip had been particular about constructing a sustainable dwelling, she says that one of many challenges was to search out an architect who would perceive their calls for.

“We had been fortunate to have met Mr Joseph Mathew, the architect of our home. He was very useful and supportive whereas making our dream a actuality,” says Laya.

Laya Joshua and Joshua Philip's family
Laya Joshua and Joshua Philip’s household

Joseph Mathew, an artist-turned-designer, says, “Laya and Joshua gave me the liberty to make use of my creativeness and concepts to inculcate eco-friendly parts as a lot as potential. It was one among my early initiatives and our pursuits matched effectively.” Joseph has been constructing sustainable and cost-effective buildings for the previous 14 years.

Partitions constructed of boulders, forest stones and roof tiles

The home was constructed fully inside eight, from the start of its building in 2013.

Although stone masonry isn’t unusual, this home stands out for the truth that many of the stones used within the building are huge boulders, forest stones and rocks that had been principally discovered within the land surrounding the location.

“Our Ranni area is thought for the presence of massive stones and boulders and it’s just about a part of the geography right here. In addition to, I’ve a behavior of not throwing out any issues straight away. So, I preserved these stones of various sizes from our compound and farmland, hoping they might come in useful in some unspecified time in the future,” Layla says.

Utilization of boulders and forest stones on the wall in addition to under pillars

Simply as she had hoped, the stones turned out to be helpful when Joseph used them to construct the home partitions. Even the picket pillars within the hall have been raised over huge boulders. “Round 20% of the home has been constructed utilizing these stones,” says Joseph.

They’ve additionally used roof tiles to construct the partitions of the home. In truth, the highest ground has been principally constructed utilizing stacked roof tiles glued collectively utilizing cement.

“I exploit this technique in most of my eco-friendly constructions. I supply the previous roof tiles from demolished homes and from locations the place they now not serve any function. The roof tiles are stronger and extra sustainable than common burnt crimson bricks. Partitions manufactured from roof tiles are thicker, present insulation, and, on the identical time, hold the home cooler,” he explains, including that round 50% of the home was constructed utilizing roof tiles.

A wall made of roof tiles in the courtyard.
A wall manufactured from roof tiles within the courtyard.

“The remaining was constructed utilizing cement bricks as the development demanded it,” he provides.

Joseph says although there was cement concerned within the building, they had been in a position to cut back the utilization to round 30 per cent. “We’ve additionally used the filler slab approach on the ceiling of the primary ground, the place we used roof tiles in between the concrete, thereby decreasing the concrete quantity and offering higher thermal insulation,” he explains.

The home shouldn’t be plastered on the skin and has uncovered stone partitions and roof-tile partitions. “Solely the interiors have been plastered. Additionally, we’ve got simply polished the outside of the roof-tile partitions,” he factors out.

Reusing and repurposing wooden

One other spotlight of the home is the sustainable utilization of wooden, which was all sourced both from their ancestral home or from previous demolished homes.

“We haven’t purchased any new furnishings, we reused and repurposed previous and damaged furnishings from our ancestral dwelling. We actually have a teapoy in our corridor which was repurposed from a cradle from my husband’s childhood,” says Laya.

A view of the living space and the teapoy made from cradle.
A view of the dwelling area and the teapoy made out of an previous cradle.

The picket pillars bordering the grand hall, which Laya says is her favorite spot in the entire home, had been additionally procured from an previous home.

“Each time we’d go to an previous home or a palace, we’d take inspiration from there. There’s a small vertical window referred to as kili-vaathil dealing with the hall, from the place folks inside the home can view the entrance yard. It was impressed from conventional Kerala homes. After we conveyed it to Joseph, he included that after procuring it from an previous demolished home,” she elaborates.

A view of the kili vaathil from the corridor.
A view of the kili vaathil from the hall.

The home contains a hall, a lounge, an open kitchen, a eating area, a courtyard and two bedrooms with hooked up bogs on the bottom ground. The second ground has two bedrooms with a standard rest room.

“We don’t actually need air con right here, principally due to the inexperienced cover surrounding our home and the utilization of pure supplies like stones and roof tiles,” says Laya.

A view of the kitchen and bedroom.
A view of the kitchen and bed room.

The flooring has been completed utilizing conventional terracotta tiles in most elements of the home aside from the hall, which was completed utilizing oxide. This was later changed with tiles.

“We needed to spend round Rs 20 lakh together with the interiors which is relatively low-budget,” she says. 

“The general value of constructing a home of this measurement utilizing standard strategies would have been at the least 25 per cent extra over 10 years in the past,” says Joseph.

For extra data, you’ll be able to contact Joseph Mathew at +916282387075.

Edited by Divya Sethu


Anikka Danger

Anikka Danger is a new journalist and model also from Texas, United States. She is passionate to photography and making video. Anikka Danger has gain a lot of attention on Facebook where she has more than 200k followers. You can follow Anikka Danger also on Instagram or TikTok.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *