“We believe when you do that right, it’s good for the community,” explains Barrie resident and Obec Homes founder Jeremy Desota. “People can funnel more of their money and time into relationships rather than funding the hamster wheel – which is what happens when houses are done to minimum basic code standards.” In 2017, Jeremy crafted an R2000 Net Zero Standard home for his family. Solar panels will soon be added to complete his sustainability plan. “Once those go up, we’ll have virtually no energy bill,” he says.
Set in south Barrie’s Tollendal area, he and Carla, his wife of 10 years, were attracted by the 85-foot wide property that would allow a large vegetable garden in the backyard and plenty of room for their three young children to play. “It’s my peaceful place, for sure,” says Carla, who works as a health coach.
The couple designed the home with spaces where their children could be children. Building supplies were sourced at Elmvale Home Building Centre.
Automation is built into their house by Simcoe Audio Video, allowing things like the ability to turn off the household lights with a touch of their smartphones.
Tucked strategically behind the mudroom is the large family room with the space and amenities to contain rambunctious youngsters. It also opens conveniently to the kitchen designed by Sheree Toffan of Designers Plus Kitchen & Bath, which also installed the kitchen, en suite bathroom, mudroom and laundry room. The kitchen boasts gold fixtures and cabinetry by Luxor Collection painted Benjamin Moore’s Gentleman’s Gray. The mist-stained engineered red oak flooring is inlaid with backsplash-matching ceramics from Tilemaster Barrie.
Open to the kitchen and dining room is a living room presided over by a floor-to-vaulted-ceiling fireplace. Its intriguingly patterned tile facade negates the need for artwork, and its clean, straight lines are matched in the unadorned windows nearby for a sleek, modern style balanced by an all-natural view and abundance of natural light to create an inviting, yet serene, haven.
“It’s important to spend as much time as possible on the design, both architectural and interior design, to ensure you get everything you want,” says Jeremy with a warning about rushing early decisions. “Building a home is a journey – it teaches you what is important, what isn’t important, and how space works.”
Upstairs, the master retreat features a private balcony overlooking the backyard. The neutral colours are enriched by the pop of blue on a wallpapered feature wall that backs up the bed and leads to the spacious bath and walk-in closet beyond.