What’s it like living in a geodesic dome?

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geo-homeMy husband and I are looking to move out of our apartment and purchase our first home.

We’ve been looking for a while and our favorite house happens to be a 1977 Geodesic Dome.

It’s awesome, well-maintained, and less expensive than other homes in the area we are looking.

Are there any Dome Dwellers among the Homies that can offer us the possible pros and cons of moving into a geodesic dome?

Oz

From this geodesic home tour, we already know that one of the issues is that it’s hard to figure out where to put the furniture.

And we’ve talked about what it’s like living in a yurt/dome… but we haven’t gotten into the nitty gritty of what geodesic home-living is like.

Any dome dwellers wanna give us some insight? Leave your comment below!

Comments on What’s it like living in a geodesic dome?

  1. We live in a 3 bdr, 2 bath two story dome with 4 ft. riser walls on the central Oregon coast. Built in 1981,we are about 2 city blocks from the beach and elevated 151 ft above sea level tucked into the trees with ocean views on two sides among conventional houses. We are the third owners and have lived here for 12 years. We were lucky to receive the initial plans for the dome which showed a relatively simple, rustic interior design. The first floor houses two huge bedrooms, a nice bath, kitchen/dining area and entry/living room. Up the open stairs is a loft, small bath and huge open room. A door leads from the room to a hexagonal balcony There is a giant hexagonal skylight framed in timber at the top of the dome.
    The entire dome is heated with the original radiant heater in the floors, copper pipe/hot water system. The entire structure and the garage-a smaller dome, were sheathed in 3 inch double laid cedar shake the likes of which are no longer produced (Oregon logging is no longer the state industry) including all the beautiful, defining,triangular angles.
    The second owners got creative and added a bump out south facing front entry with wall to wall double panned windows, an east facing unheated brick floor service porch with wall to wall windows and glass slider entry off a deck. They upgraded and tiled the bathroom. They installed ceramic tile throughout the living/kitchen/bath area then presumably ran out of money and simply painted the cement floor in one bedroom and had indoor/outdoor carpet glued to the second bedroom floor. Both bedrooms have “creative” closets and two large windows.
    Sorry this is running long-If OK I’ll continue on next post.

  2. Continuing on.
    The second owners were well known locals with an artistic touch. As we hired local trades people to make changes we heard stories of the prior to ceramic tile floor installation of red painted floors which was not surprising considering the soft pink ceilings, lime green accent walls, partially wall papered stairs, purple with flowering arches stairway, giant purple pyramid upstairs motif and blue ceiling with white clouds kitchen. We feel in love with the idea of restoring some dignity and grace into this iconic Buckminster Fuller concept home. And so we have. Gallons of paint, an eclectic mix of comfortable furnishings and art has transformed our dome into a place our friends and family adore and love to stay in. Our bed is placed upstairs under the skylight and we watch the moon and stars dance through the night. The dome is magical in it’s own right, we simply let the art of the architecture shine through.

    After 37 years of months of annual rain and 80+ MPH winds we realized we needed to re-roof. I’m not going to sugarcoat the process of finding a roofer-it took a year. Many came, saw and declined to spend the extra hours of labor it would entail. We were so fortunate to find Gary L Stevens Contractor with 20 years of experience building any and everything on this coast to become intrigued with the notion of working on something different. We went into contract with a set price and $50 per hour time and materials if necessary to replace the existing wood. We readied paperwork to withdraw our 401’s. Here is where all this finally comes to the point I need to make if you are considering purchasing a dome. On the entire roof only two panels needed replacement. The rest of all that wood was as clean and clear as the day it was originally laid. Bee’s had claimed one, improper flashing another. If you want to purchase a dome the most important thing to consider is the QUALITY of the initial build. Don’t go cheap and buy someone else’s problem. If the owners are having leaking windows and roofing-you will too. We went in knowing our dome was structurally sound. It had a history of 25 years of problem free service. Ask around. Talk with the neighbors, check how often it has changed hands-did people stay awhile? If you find a good one-buy it! Life’s too short to live vanilla.

  3. I’m not sure how our home dome compares to this home as you didn’t indicate the details like measurements, etc. But I would recommend just talking over to the guys who helped me with my home. https://www.simpleterra.com/dome-homes/ They have a dome installation which takes only a few hours to set up. It costs around 15-22k USD. It’s cheaper than buying your prospect house.

  4. Adding my 2¢ as well since my experience has been meh, at best. I live in a 3/2 dome in Northern California in the foothills of Yosemite. So a little snow and regular rain. This house was built by the original owners in the mid 70’s then remodeled a few years ago, like, completely. The ceiling was either not seamed correctly or this design is just not good for leaks. There are also no eaves so there’s now a giant hole in the upstairs bedroom ceiling where moisture gathered after a rain. Pretty much every triangle seam is cracking and bubbling. Since there’s 2 bedrooms downstairs there’s more of a square-ish feel to it. Furniture was a puzzle at first but then it came together perfectly with what I brought from my apartment plus one very lovely dining table and chairs. There’s a big wraparound deck too which is the best. However, its hard to figure out gutters (I literally do not have any water egress) so I get a shower whenever it rains and I’m going in or out. I suggest an awning at the very least. Seriously unless you’re doing a more temporary structure in someone’s back yard – I think they’re more form than function. Heat definitely sits at the top, and the windows are so tiny upstairs (too much curvature) so it’s tough to get it cool up there all year. A ceiling fan is a must. Also they just leak. Period. And it’s a framers nightmare so no one wants to work on them and/or they do a garbage job because it’s difficult/confusing/bizarre.

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