Our Standard Features

On all our homes “The Whole House System” is our guide and is integral to the long term success of each project.

General Conditions:

  • An initial lot line survey to help ensure proper placement on the lot.
  • An as-built survey to show the finished house as it is constructed on the lot.
  • Builders Risk Insurance to cover the entire project during construction.
  • A complete (3rd party) Home Inspection packet (banks call them PURs)
  • A “plans” energy rating prior to construction to help determine energy efficient options prior to building, followed by a final energy rating at completion.
  • An onsite dumpster and porta-can for a clean and professional jobsite.
  • A water well, 100’ in depth, with a well pump.
  • Permanent power and natural gas connections, up to 100’ in distance.
  • We cover the cost of utility use during the construction process.
  • A Premium water test, which tests for arsenic, nitrate, E-coli, coliform and iron.
  • A “big blue” in-line sediment filter.
  • A home designer, to help with the sometimes daunting task of selecting your colors and surfaces!


  • A complete excavation package including: lot clearing for an 80’ driveway with a turnaround, 30’ clearance around the house, stacking the logs, excavate and backfill the foundation, an HDPE waterline buried approximately 10’ in depth from the well to the house, a 3-bedroom gravity feed septic system, and a final grade.
  • Custom foundations per the plans, with optional upgrade details included for specific client selections like tall ceilings, retaining walls, gun vaults, concrete patios, sidewalks, etc.
  • Garage slabs are sloped to floor drains, not left to puddle. 1 floor drain is provided per overhead door.
  • The front lip of the garage slab is sloped to the outside, to shed water.
  • Plastic is installed under concrete slabs to reduce moisture infiltration from the ground, and to reduce the ability for radon gas to enter the home through cracks in the concrete.
  • Exterior concrete has additives to make it resilient to the freeze/thaw cycle in Alaska.
  • If the home has a basement, the exterior of the foundation is insulated, allowing the concrete foundation wall to be part of the home’s “heat mass.” This helps the home retain heat in the event of a power outage. It also combats a common problem with condensation and moisture within the basement exterior wall assembly.
  • Exterior deck supports are “frost free” pillars, which impedes frost jacking and helps keep decks flat and stable year-round.
  • The overhead garage door wraps are cedar, which provides increased durability when there is contact with concrete.

Building Envelope: (Framing/roofing/siding/soffit/windows/doors)

*Our building envelopes fully dovetail with “The Whole House System.” This is largely accomplished through proper penetration techniques and flashing details throughout the home, from the foundation to the roof top.

  • All wood that touches concrete is pressure treated – or cedar.
  • Stiffer floors with engineered floor joists, adequate beam sizing and spacing, and gluelam beams to minimize shrinking or settling.
  • Vaulted interiors, and 9’ tall main floor ceilings are considered a standard, but do vary per specific home design.
  • 2×6 exterior wall construction with studs 24” on center to maximize insulation in the wall cavity.
  • Energy heel trusses, which address the age-old heat loss problem on the roof eves. (You won’t see icicles on a Wirtanen Home!)
  • 16” overhangs with “look outs” cut into the gable for additional stiffness for snow load and/or uplift.
  • A vented roof system (not a “hot roof”) which allows moisture to escape from an attic without causing substantial ice buildup inside or outside the roof assembly.
  • High quality house wrap, which allows the wall assembly to breath, but keeps liquid water out.
  • Properly installed window, roofs, decks and flashings.
  • OSB Smart Lap siding on all 4 sides of the home (not T1-11).
  • Exterior paint is a two-color paint scheme: body and trim, plus exterior man doors.
  • Enclosed soffit above any porch roof (not on the entire house).
  • A lifetime warranty architectural shingled roof, with a 5-year labor warranty and a 130 MPH wind guarantee! We also include a metal drip edge on the entire roof perimeter.
  • Windows are a double pane, argon filled, vinyl. *A Wirtanen Home has, on average, 30% more windows than other homes.
  • Overhead garage doors are upgraded from an R12 white door to an R16 premium overhead door.
  • An electric opener is included for each overhead door.
  • (Optional) Hybrid Timber Framing available from Arrow Timber

Mechanical Systems: (plumbing, heating and electrical)

*Our mechanical systems also fully integrate with “The Whole House System.” This is accomplished by combining ultra-energy efficient appliances with a “balanced” heating and ventilation system.

    • Chrome, oil rubbed bronze or brushed nickel fixtures.
    • Granite countertops with under mount sinks.
    • Fully custom, walk-in tile shower in the master bathroom, with a single shower head and double sink vanities. Other bathrooms have fiberglass shower units.
    • 6’ soak tub with a tile surround in the master bathroom.
    • Floor drains are included in the garage and basement mechanical rooms.
    • “On-demand” domestic hot water heater.
    • A 96% efficient, two stage gas furnace, with ducted supply and return air. Two stage means the furnace has two BTU output settings, which significantly increases efficiency. The heat ducts are also fully seam sealed, which helps provide a controlled environment living space.
    • A gas fireplace is included, for ambiance and emergency backup heat; these fireplaces use a battery backup to ignite, and will produce heat even when the power is out!
    • A 100 amp generator transfer switch is included on the exterior of the home, so you can power your house on a generator in the event of a power outage.

Energy Efficiency:

*True energy efficiency is a hallmark of a Wirtanen Home. On top of a custom design and exemplary service, our energy efficient homes truly set a higher bar. Our entire building envelope (foundation, rim joists, walls, windows, doors, and ceiling/roof) plus our mechanical systems, have upgraded energy efficient features included in the Wirtanen Standard. Not only does this equate to less out of pocket expense each month for utility bills, but it gives the structure a longer life with less maintenance.

*Note there are three types of heat loss: Radiation, Conduction and Convection. It’s worth mentioning that “R value” is a somewhat loose term to describe energy efficiency, as R value pertains primarily to conductive heat transfer, which doesn’t fully define true energy efficiency.

  • All our exterior walls and rim joists are insulated with a spray-in-place foam insulation, which not only completely seals the entire wall cavity, but also increases the R value from a traditional R21 fiberglass to an R24 FOAM (14.3% R value increase). This product doesn’t quite get the attention it deserves, as it significantly reduces convection (air movement), which is the primary form of heat loss in a home. Spray foam helps maintain a “controlled environment” living space by keeping fine outdoor dusts and pollens outside, where they belong. It also creates a substantially quieter living space than conventional insulation. In Alaska’s windy and cold climates, spray foam is perhaps the most significant upgrade in a Wirtanen Home.
  • Our flat trussed ceiling insulation is upgraded from the code compliant R38 to an R50 (a 32% energy efficiency increase)!
  • Raised heel trusses give space for additional insulation directly above the exterior walls.
  • Upgraded R16 garage overhead doors vs the standard R12 (a 33% energy efficient increase)!
  • Perimeter insulation on the garage foundation for a conductive thermal break.
  • As mentioned previously, we also include an on-demand water heater and a 96% efficient gas furnace.

Interior Finishes

*Wirtanen’s goal is to provide a strikingly beautiful product in the eyes of our client’s.  This requires early communication in the design stage, and the allowances and features are intended to reflect this. This portion of the project is often the most exciting, as clients get to see their forever home take shape, reflecting their taste and style with selections including cabinetry, countertops, plumbing fixtures, paint, flooring, lighting, hardware, appliances and more. And to assist in this task, our clients have the pleasure of working with a professional home designer to make sure the finishing touches compliment each other and turn out as envisioned!

*Wirtanen is often associated with the rustic timber, wood and stone appearance, however, we commonly provide contemporary or modern interiors as well.

  • Sheetrock all walls and ceilings, with a light orange peel texture and square corners. Firetape garages.
  • Interior paint includes a base color plus 2 accent colors. Garages have a white primer. All exterior doors are painted, and the front entry door has an upgraded custom stain kit included.
  • Additional costs are included for specialty tile, including tile showers, fireplace or tub surrounds, kitchen backsplash, etc.
  • The master bathroom walk-in shower has tile to the ceiling (9′).
  • Interior trim includes a clear finished, solid wood, knotty pine trim package, OR, a white, MDF paint grade trim.
  • All windows are fully cased, not sheet rock wrapped.
  • Solid core 6 panel pine doors, or solid core paint grade doors throughout.
  • Mantle above the gas fireplace.
  • Upgraded pre-finished plywood closet and pantry shelves, per plans.
  • Granite is included for all countertops, in addition to the cabinetry allowance.
  • We also provide a professional “construction” house cleaning at job completion.

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