Financing for an earth-banked home
We are going to build an earth-banked home. We have a great floorplan, and a company that will supply materials our contractor will use to build it. It is a one level, 4 bedroom design, built so we, both in our 60s, can age in place. 42" doorways, 4 ft hallways, handicapped accessible bathrooms - showers, toilets, vanity. 4000 sq ft, all at grade.
And that, is the problem. In Kentucky, where we own the land we'll build on, an at-grade, one level, earth-banked home is appraised as a "basement" home. Being earth-banked makes the home, in the minds of our bank's appraiser, a basement. Fourteen foot ceilings throughout, custom finishing on the interior, custom windows facing the southwest all along the front of the home, a 3 car attached garage, built with materials that will last 100 years, and it's a basement.
The only lender willing to talk to us appraised this a basement. We have been looking for 3years for a lender, in Kentucky, to help us finance the build. Now, we have had success with national banks being willing to finance this as the green roof technology it is, but our builder, being a local man with impecable recommendations and references, refuses to share his financial information with them. A lot of business in Kentucky is done on a hand shake, and being asked to submit his last three years of tax returns was an insult and he refused. So, we're back to local banks.
We are VERY discouraged and wonder if we'll ever see our dream come true. Any thoughts? And do not say get another builder. We have the best builder in the area, who spent a great deal of time researching the ins and outs of our build before he consented to take us on. He has lined up sub-contractors, and has been ready to build it for three years. And, short of selling everything...everything, including our clothes, to finance the build with cash, we are very discouraged. Yes, we've even considered selling the land and moving our dream elsewhere, but KY's taxes on retirement income are almost the lowest in the country. The land is beautiful, the people welcoming and friendly, and we would rather stay there....well, get there.
So. Thoughts? Suggestions? Money to lend? :)