Category
How-To

Zero-Net Energy Homes

With energy costs on the rise, it’s not just environmentally friendly to keep your energy consumption reined in—it’s wallet-friendly too! And the best time to consider your energy savings is when you’re building a new home.  If you plan appropriately, it’s possible to build a “zero-net energy” log home. Also called “energy neutral” or “net zero,” zero-net energy (ZNE) homes actually collect or produce more energy than they use, making it possible to live independently from the energy grid. “A zero-…

The Undiscovered Jewel

It takes a unique blend of vision, entrepreneurial sprit, and artistry to see a piece of raw, undeveloped land and picture what it could become. Fortunately for folks who are interested in enjoying the splendors of North Carolina’s Blue Ridge Mountains, Sandy Wood and Pete Pyles had all three in spades. This collaboration between Sandy, a real estate developer and builder, and Pete, a log home builder, has resulted in The Olde River Club —a spectacular gated log-friendly community perched high atop one …

Smart Roofs?

With everything under the sun being labeled “smart” these days, it follows that smart roofs are in our near future. A smart roof coating made from waste cooking oil from fast food restaurants (minus the smell, of course) is being processed into a liquid polymer that hardens like plastic. When applied to roofing material, the coating switches roles from reflecting to transmitting heat by reading a thermometer. The coating can be adjusted to the location of the home. It is both nontoxic and nonflammable a…

What You Need to Know – Financing

For many log home owners, the most daunting task in completing the purchase or construction of their ideal residence is dealing with financing. Although economic pressures have weighed on the market and banks have often been described as reluctant to lend, even during the best of times obtaining a loan for a log home requires planning, patience, and understanding of the necessary steps. While the processes of financing conventional and log homes share similariti…

Westward Ho!

Are cowboys and Indians and ranches and cattle the first things that come to mind when you think of Western style? It encompasses all of these things and so much more. Western style incorporates the Spanish, Mexican, Scandinavian, and Asian cultures brought to the American West by its many immigrants. Settlers who moved from the East to the West brought their own styles with them: Adirondack, North Wood…

Floors for a Lifetime

When choosing flooring for your log or timber home, you don’t have to settle for second best. Selecting the best floors for your lifestyle will benefit your home for many years to come, says Richard Ragone, East Coast sales representative for Montana Log Homes. “Quality floors are one of the most important areas on the inside of a home,” Ragone says. “Short cuts should not be taken.” More styles of flooring are available now than ever before to fit your needs…

Making Good Choices

The process of building a custom log or timber home is the crossroads of personal preference, cost efficiency, and technical necessity to produce the right balance of aesthetics and sound, quality construction. Each of the primary parties involved, the homeowner, log producer, and builder, plays a vital role in the construction process. Each one lends individual know-how to the experience, complementing the others. In the end, the goal is for homeowners to enjoy the log or timber …

How to Calculate Your Building Budget & Financing Timeline

No segment of the U.S. economy has been so battered and bruised by the prolonged recession as the housing industry. Today, however, leading indicators show positive trends. Along with the housing recovery, the Federal government has mandated new mortgage financing rules that take effect through 2013 and beyond. Building or buying any home now involves revised guidelines that touch nearly every aspect of the financing process, including appraisals, disclosures of terms, closing costs, and qualifying fina…

Universal Design Gains in Popularity

Though not everyone will be familiar with the term “universal design,” it is a concept that has been a part of the home-building industry since the 1980s. Gaining in popularity worldwide, it is, simply put, approaching the design and construction of a building with a focus on making it comfortable, usable and above all, safe as possible. It benefits all individuals, whether they are short, tall, visually impaired, physically or mentally disabled, young, old,…

Getting Competitive Bids

The experience of building a log or timber home, making the vision become a reality, is extraordinary and may take place only once in a lifetime. The advantage of previous experience is often absent. Therefore, consulting professionals becomes critical to the process—from the beginning. The first step in the journey is often a comparison of pricing and deliverables from qualified log and timber home packaging companies, and the advice of professionals adds confiden…

The Quest for Simplicity

Hundreds of log homes throughout North America serve as model homes for log home producers. This is one of them. Visitors are welcome at all of these homes and we encourage you to visit them. It’s a great opportunity to view different designs, construction techniques, and craftsmanship. Look at Log Home Events in this issue for listings of upcoming open houses at these model homes. Be sure to call before visiting to ensure the home will be open when you arrive. “Big things come in small packag…

Just the Facts

A myriad of decisions have to be made to bring the dream of a log, timber, or hybrid home to life. Style, floorplan, amenities, and location are a few that come readily to mind. The most challenging for many homeowners, however, comes down to the money. Financing a log or timber home holds a degree of mystery, an element of the unknown, and often enough it is a topic of real concern. Certain misconceptions and downright myths persist that financing of a specialty home is more difficult than financ…