Building a New House in Ojai and Ventura County

Building in the City of Ojai is a fairly straightforward process.  The town itself is quite small, only 4.4 miles, beyond those boundaries you are in the unincorporated area of  Ventura County – a bit more challenging building process.  Call us to help you navigate the building process.

Geography

Ojai is located at 34°26′57″N 119°14′48″W

The city is generally at 745 feet (227 m) above sea level.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 4.4 square miles (11 km2), of which only 0.35% is water, and the rest is land.

Ojai is situated in a small east-west valley, north of Ventura and east of Santa Barbara. It is approximately 15 miles (24 km) inland from the Pacific Ocean coast.

Since Ojai is lined up with an east-west mountain range, it is one of few towns in the world to have a “Pink Moment” occur as the sun is setting. The fading sunlight creates a brilliant shade of pink for several minutes on the Topatopa Bluffs, over 6,000 feet (1,800 m) above sea level at the east end of the Ojai Valley. Nordhoff Ridge, the western extension of the Topatopa Mountains, towers over the north side of the town and valley at more than 5,000 feet (1,500 m). Sulphur Mountain creates the southern ranges bounding the Ojai Valley, a little under 3,000 feet (910 m) in elevation. The Sulphur and Topatopa Mountains are part of the Transverse Ranges system.

The Ventura River flows through the Ventura River Valley, draining the mountains surrounding Ojai to the north and east and emptying into the Pacific Ocean at the city of Ventura. The Ventura River was once known for its steelhead fishing before Matilija Dam and Lake Casitas were constructed, eliminating habitat for this trout species.

The climate of Ojai is Mediterranean, characterized by hot, dry summers, sometimes exceeding 100 °F (38 °C), and mild winters, with lows at night sometimes below freezing. As is typical for much of coastal southern California, most precipitation falls in the form of rain between the months of October and April, with intervening dry summers.

Building in a challanging location – Ojai, CA

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Building a home in remote areas ups the ante for challenges and cost. This house located at 2700 feet above sea level on the south range of the mountains of the Ojai Valley has amazing views of the Topa Topa mountains to the North and the mighty Pacific on the South.

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Just getting people to the job is a challenge – Google, smart phones and even maps don’t accurately show the property.  With the 100’s of trade contractors, inspectors, delivery drivers, etc. getting people to the job is a chore itself.

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We had to install our own street sign – which was later mysteriously removed !

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Roadways, grading, drainage, utilities have to travel up a 1700 foot long driveway.  Rules and regulations also get more challenging from the building department, the fire department and all of the other agencies that get involved in the permitting.

 

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But you just can’t beat it!  Views of the Channel Islands of Santa Barbara.

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Bottom Line: Get er Done!

 

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Feel Free to copy, share, or re post this article. Kindly make sure to include this information: Written by Otis Bradley, a Custom Home Builder, in Southern California. Please see OtisBradley.com for more information on Custom Home Building!

Radiant Cooling and Heating – Ojai Ca

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Looks like an ordinary kitchen right? Wrong !

The yellow rectangles in the “infrared photo” are actually heating (or can cool) panels built into the ceiling of this house!

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By: Otis Bradley

Project: Ojai, California – Radiant Cooling

Architecture: Patrick W. Nolan
Builder: Otis Bradley Company, Inc.
Interior Design: Rhett Judice

See more about the radiant in this project CLICK HERE

 

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Feel Free to copy, share, or re post this article. Kindly make sure to include this information: Written by Otis Bradley, a Custom Home Builder, in Southern California. Please see OtisBradley.com for more          information on Custom Home Building!

Ojai – New Construction – Radiant Heat and Cooling

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By: Otis Bradley

Project: Ojai, California – Radiant Cooling

Architecture: Patrick W. Nolan
Builder: Otis Bradley Company, Inc.
Interior Design: Rhett Judice

In the words of the late great singer – James Brown – I feel good !  Like I know that I should! Ughhh ! Yeahhhh !

Everybody loves radiant heat ! It feels good.  Done right – you don’t even know you have a heating system – it just feeeeeels good!

Our new custom home in Ojai  – is traditionally designed in a French Provincial style, yet includes high tech equipment.  Not only does it have radiant heating tubes embedded in the concrete slabs under the French limestone floors, but … we also have cooling tubes in the ceiling.

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This project – although a traditional, French Provincial style home, still has high tech equipment. The house is super insulated using insulated concrete block, ICF, technology and both heated and cooled using radiant panels in the floor and ceiling.

The problem:

Everyone loves radiant floor heat, but in hot climates everyone wants cooling as well.  Typically this means an entire second – usually a ducted forced air system – is added just for cooling.

The solution:

Use radiant to cool as well as heat.

We did this with the help of special panels and control systems that sense humidity and allow us to cool without creating condensation.

Bottom Line:

It feels GOOD ! In hot or cold weather !Everybody loves radiant heat! You won’t even know there is a heating system in a home if its done right – it just feels comfortable.

 

More on this project CLICK HERE

 

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Feel Free to copy, share, or re post this article. Kindly make sure to include this information: Written by Otis Bradley, a Custom Home Builder, in Southern California. Please see OtisBradley.com for more          information on Custom Home Building!

California Title 24

Title 24 is an energy law that was first established on June 1, 2001.  This energy law was created to conserve the high consumption and demand of energy in California.  The new compliance standards are applicable to both commercial and residential lighting.  Lighting for commercial buildings and residential homes require high efficacy luminaires or dimming controls in each room.  Here are the 2005 CA Residential Lighting Requirements*:

Changes in Brief:

Title 24 will require high efficacy luminaires, occupancy sensors, and/or dimmers in most spaces:

  • Kitchens: At least 50% of the total wattage of kitchen lighting must be from high efficacy luminaires. Non-high efficacy luminaires must be switched separately from high efficacy            luminaires.
  • Bathrooms, utility rooms, garages and laundry rooms: High efficacy lighting or manual-on occupancy sensors required.
  • Exterior, attached to building: High efficacy luminaires or combined photo sensors/occupancy sensors required.
  • All other interior spaces: High efficacy luminaires, occupancy sensors, OR dimmers required.
  • Recessed lighting: When installed in insulated ceilings, must be both Type IC (insulated covered) and airtight (AT) rated.
  • Electronic ballasts: Electronic ballasts are required for all fluorescent luminaires 13 watts or greater. Continue reading “California Title 24”