Good afternoon,

We are building a 5000 sq ft home that will become our retirement home. It is located in the Great Smoky Mountains/Knoxville/Gatlinburg region of Tennessee.

Specifics on the house... a log home with five bedrooms in all... 2 in the basement (1 with private bath), 1 on the main floor (master with private bath), and 2 in the loft (each with private bath). There is a kitchen on the main and an efficiency/in-law kitchen in the basement. There is a half-bath on the main floor for common use and another full bath in the basement for common use and the bedroom without the private bath.

As for usage... the home will be used intermittently until I fully retire in about 6 years. We'll probably be spending at least 3-4 nights a week there though until then. The house will primarily be occupied by me and my wife. However, our two daughters may spend some time there also. While most folks downsize when they retire, we've taken the plunge to try to afford and build a home that will be a gathering place for our immediate and extended families... thus the large size and number of bedrooms. So, while the house may be fairly empty at times, at other times we may have a really full house.

With that background, what would you recommend that we consider for water heaters? We've installed high efficiency windows and extra insulation in the ceiling of the home. Three, 3-ton electric heat pumps will provide the heating and cooling and we will also have an EPA II fireplace on the main floor and (at some point in the future) an efficient wood stove in the basement to assist in the heating.

Any thoughts and advice would be greatly appreciated!