What is it like living in straw bale?
Thirteen years ago, when I first met my now husband, I had never heard of a real straw bale house. I made the typical joke- “like the three little pigs?” Micah rolled his eyes at me and explained what a straw bale home was, and that he wanted to build one. I was more than a little dubious. It wasn’t until meeting my future in-laws and staying in their straw bale house that I came to appreciate the quiet calm of the earthy building material.
I grew to love straw bale buildings, which was why I readily agreed to build one with my husband.
Building our home, like any build, was challenging at times. But living in straw bale is a dream. The trademark thick walls dull any busy outdoor noise. The temperature is always a welcome relief when you walk through the door. The natural hand-rendered walls make me feel more connected to the outdoors, and makes the house seem more at home among the garden rather than a solemn intruder.
There are plenty of practical, less romantic, reasons to build a straw bale house. The running costs are considerably less than buildings of other construction, due to the natural insulation. Less artificial heating and cooling means more money in my pocket. Straw bale homes are more environmentally friendly, both to build and live in. And not once have I had to scrape mold off the walls as I was forced to do in moisture-prone rentals, scarring me for life.
When I wake up in the morning, I get to live each day in the home I made myself. I love showing new guests around the house (when I’ve tidied), answering their questions and seeing their shocked expressions when they learn Micah and I built it. Fair warning though, some may be tempted to test the render integrity by giving it a bit of a scratch!
Straw bale houses are a fantastic investment, and are homes that seem to embrace you with a wholesome warmth. No other home I’ve ever lived in can compare. Despite my initial reservations all those years ago, I know I definitely made the right decision.