Timber eco home on an island, Whangarei Heads

Living on an island presents unique challenges, not the least of which is living ‘off the grid’, with no power, water or wastewater connections on site. But with clever design and smart systems, a functional and beautiful eco home was created for our clients on their island near Whangarei Heads.

The brief was for a functional home with a small footprint, that fitted into its natural surroundings and was completely off the grid. Modern Earth Homes delivered a solution that maximised passive solar benefits, incorporating extensive joinery for cross-ventilation in the summer, and a heat soak corridor for thermal mass and solar gain in the winter months. This ensures a warm, cosy home in the winter, and an airy, cool home during the Summer.

Timber framing and cladding were used, with locally sourced timber where possible. A wormerator septic system takes care of sewage and wastewater, while solar panels with battery bank supply the power, allowing the owners to live as comfortably off the grid as they would on it.


“Ingenuity and fine workmanship – an outstanding result”

“Modern Earth Homes constructed our off grid eco home under challenging circumstances in a remote location without vehicle access. Their team stepped up to the challenge showing ingenuity and fine workmanship to produce an outstanding result.

We highly recommend Modern Earth Homes. We found them friendly, trustworthy and easy to work with. We love our new home and after four years of living here we can’t fault any aspect of the build.” – Rod and Lou

Modern Earth Homes
Get in touch
Visit Website

Professionals used in
Off Grid Eco Living

About the

Modern Earth Homes was established in 2017 by Sam and Sandra McGregor. Sam has extensive experience with rammed earth and sustainable building methods. Over the years, he has come to love creating homes for people that are unique and represent the individuality of his clients, using natural building materials and techniques. Sam developed a passion for the solid, warm, dry nature of rammed earth and chose this method to build a beautiful home for his family.

When Sam and Sandra decided to build their own rammed earth home, they didn’t just want a home that was healthy and comfortable. They wanted to build it with minimal environmental impact, with an emphasis on natural building materials and techniques. It was through the process of building their own rammed earth home that the philosophy of Modern Earth Homes was born.