Why is this sustainable house on Vashon only $210K?

If you’re unconventional enough, and interested in sustainability, this is an uncommon opportunity

Care about preserving nature? There’s a program for that. King County has a Public Benefit Rating System (PBRS) that offers homeowners an incentive to “voluntarily preserve open space, farmland or forestland on their property”. Here’s a property that plays with the idea, and snuggles into a preserved piece of nature.

The house is a two bedroom, one and three-quarter bath, Contemporary loft style home with 1,377 square feet. It takes contemporary to a new place, though. The toilets compost. The heat is wood. The forest wraps so close to the house that the plants get to look in the windows. Those are old ideas that are new again as people test ways to live sustainably.

That fits well with having much of the 4.45 acreage under the PBRS designation. That’s the idea, find a balance that lets housing and nature live together. It was built in 1986, long before sustainability became a trend; and long enough for one massive wisteria to occupy the trellis lining the large deck. An impressive sight in full bloom.

Artistry and innovation in the house also matches with the large detached artist studio, a source of inspiration, and possibly some of the construction.

A house on acreage with property tax benefits should be valuable, yet the price is only $210,000. A tour and some research will reveal the reason – if it stays on the market long enough. The listing mentions reclaiming the garden, which suggests nature has decided to extend its reach, naturally. The listing also mentions finishing the permits, which could be just a regular update to the PBRS or perhaps for some construction. A few projects may not be completed because they also mention finishing some details.

In any case, if you’re unconventional enough, and interested in sustainability, this is an uncommon opportunity – or at least the source of an interesting story.

· King County Current Use Taxation Programs [PBRS]

· 14535 SW Reddings Beach Rd, Vashon [Zillow]

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