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Cave Homes

Living in cave homes is certainly anything but a new idea, since ancient man did this long before more modern forms of housing were developed. But natural caves are not found in every geographical area, and men were forced to carve into sandstone or volcanic ash, to form cave homes that gave them shelter from the elements.

Cave Home

Many ancient cave homes are still there, and some even have modern day inhabitants.

Other people are making their plans for modern cave living. You may have an image in mind of a cave home, with a cooking fire as its only amenity, but today's cave homes offer great views and modern conveniences. They are well-ventilated when planned properly, and they often can be cheaper to build than conventional homes.

Underground spaces have always been naturally quieter, and the temperature is fairly constant. They are warm during winter months and cool in the summer. The structures are made from completely natural materials, so they are almost 100-percent locally sourced. Not everyone would want to live in even the most modern of cave homes, but for those who do, caves are an excellent example of outside the box thinking.

Modern Cave Home

Do You Mine?

Former mines can be good locations for cave homes, as long as they are structurally sound. Extra support may be needed to make these homes more livable and safe. Cave homes are usually Eco-friendly, since they don't need cooling or heating units to be run, and the air is comfortable in temperature nearly year-round.

The exterior of a cave house may be primitive by design or obviously modern. One home uses sliding glass doors as its façade, and the water they need each day is gathered with dehumidifiers and pumped where it is needed.

Fluorescent bulbs provide plenty of light for cave dwellings, and natural wood flooring gives them a more appealing look. You can make the most of the light in the area by using large windows. You may opt to use traditional or contemporary furnishings in a cave habitat, since it has no preconceived style of its own. Most of these houses have all the modern conveniences you might want.

If you want your cave home to be lighter, you can use light ducts to filter sunlight deeply into your dwelling. Cave houses have done quite well through earthquakes, and they are fire resistant, but sometimes they have trouble with excess moisture. Dehumidifiers and proper ventilation and drainage will take care of that concern.

Many cavern homes are excavated with equipment otherwise used for mining, if there are not existing mines in the area that are suitable for habitation. The homes that are dug out of mine areas are usually less expensive to build than are traditional homes. They require almost no air conditioning, and this is especially advantageous in warmer climates.

Awesome Aussie Hideout ...

One cave home complex in Australia is especially poignant, since the locals have referred to miners as "white men in holes" since mining began there in the early 1900's. Many people in the area still call the caves home, and enjoy lower utility bills, even during the hottest of the summer months.

Written by Kevin Knatloa

First Published on November 05, 2012

Updated November 22, 2013