River Falls, Wis., energy-efficient house for sale

There are numerous unique aspects of this home, which sits on almost eight acres of land on the outskirts of River Falls. One of the most notable parts of the house is that it is a double envelope style. 

This type of house became popular in the early 1980s. The double envelope style is a design where houses have an inner and an outer shell through which air passes, with the goal of reducing heating and cooling costs. The benefit of this design has been debated. An article published by Annual Reviews (a nonprofit publisher that works to "synthesizing and integrating knowledge for the progress of science and the benefit of society") in 1985 reported that "it is reasonable to conclude that there is little justification for building two envelopes to obtain the same performance achieved by passive solar buildings with one envelope."

Whether or not double envelope style houses are the most energy-efficient option, this River Falls house is more efficient than many houses. Along with the double wall construction, the home has fiberglass Andersen windows and electric heat storage units. A large double gas fireplace in the center of the main floor also offers warmth in the winter. 

The main living space is large and open. The main floor includes a family room, a large living room, the dining room and huge kitchen. The kitchen includes an island with a countertop long enough to seat at least four people on one side. Off of the kitchen is a four season porch that faces South. 

Four of the bedrooms are in the upper level, including the owner's suite. The suite includes a large walk-in closet and a full bathroom. The upper level also houses a hot tub room with doors that lead out onto a deck. 

The lower level is perfect for guests. The floor includes two bedrooms, a 3/4 bathroom, a bonus room and a wet bar. The walkout allows guest to come and go as they please. 

  • Asking price: $950,000
  • Bedrooms: six
  • Bathrooms: four
  • Square feet: 6,719
  • Acres: 7.86
  • Year built: 1986

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