Category
Planning

“Free” Energy

Optimal energy efficiency is a primary goal in the design of any log or timber home, and while solar energy has been the topic of considerable discussion for the last half century, it remains relevant for some homeowners. Both passive and active solar energy options remain available, but there are distinct differences between the two. Active solar energy systems are probably the most familiar. These utilize mechanical equipment and electricity to promote the conversion of the sun’s e…

Eco-Friendly Living

Choosing a log and timber home is the first step down the path toward eco-friendly living. Wood is a renewable resource. Sustainability is a key component, and while the choice of a primary building material is an excellent starting point it opens the door to an enhanced environmental awareness and lifestyle. “Keep life cycle in mind,” explains Josh Beasley, president of Honest Abe Log Homes, Inc. “Log and timber homes are naturally eco-friendly, which to many may sound absurd on the surface. However, w…

Big Trend: Small Homes

In November 2010, the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) reported that the median size of new home construction continued to decline during the latter half of the decade, peaking at 2,268 square feet in 2006 and settling to an even 2,100 square feet in 2009. According to the report, a similar trend occurred in the early 1980s, when interest rates climbed to astronomical heights, but this reduction in square footage was only temporary. The 1990s saw t…

Finding the Right Builder

You’ve spent years dreaming about living in a log home: collecting magazine pictures, touring model homes, fleshing out designs, and scoping out the perfect site with a view. Now you’re ready to find the right builder who can transform your dream into reality.  Building a new log home is a significant investment, and you’ll want to take the time to find a reputable, experienced builder. The task may seem daunting, but with careful research you should be able to find the builder who matches your nee…

Choosing the Perfect Floorplan

You’ve been dreaming of your perfect home for years, and if you close your eyes you can visualize the grand entryway, the soaring cathedral ceilings, and the views from the wraparound porch. So when it comes time to select a floorplan, you might think you have it all figured out. Think again! There are many factors that go into selecting a floorplan that you might not even consider until you start making decisions on the specifics. This…

Completing the Puzzle

The purchase of a log home package is an important step in constructing that home of a lifetime. However, determining the ingredients of the package and finding the right supplier for those necessary items that are not included requires some study and preparation. “All clients need to be aware that log package prices can be misleading,” relates Jeremy Bertrand, national sales manager for Log Homes of America. “Someone could click on a plan, request a quote, and see a number that is…

Simplify and Enjoy!

When it comes to planning ahead for comfortable retirement living, prospective log home owners are looking for ways to simplify their lives and spend time focused on the activities they enjoy. While some are building the log home of their dreams as a primary residence, many others are building a vacation log home as a retreat where they can spend time with family and friends.  “For the majority of our [retirement age] clients, this log home is the last home they’re going to b…

Making Low Maintenance Real

The maintenance-free home—log, timber, or otherwise—is an illusion. But the low-maintenance log or timber home is within reach. While the exact definition of “low maintenance” may vary from one person to another, the idea is consistent. Build or buy a home that stands up to the rigors of the climate and weather where the real estate is located. From planning to design to construction, the maintenance needs of a log or timber home relate directly to the step-b…

The Heat Is On!

The roaring fire with shadows dancing and welcoming warmth will always be a source of beauty and comfort for those who love log and timber homes. Whether providing a source of heat or decorative accent—or both—the fireplace and woodstove are essential elements in the look and feel of the home. When it comes to that look and feel, the selection and efficiency of fireplaces and woodstoves is better than ever. Wood burning, gas, and electric alternatives …

Stock Plan vs. Custom Design

All log cabin homes begin with the same two things: a dream and a floorplan. The dream of owning a log home is pretty straightforward, but choosing a plan? Not so much. You’re faced with a host of considerations from determining how large of a home you really require for the ebb and flow of your family’s daily lifestyle and a thousand other needs in between.  But one of the most important choices you’ll make when it comes to your home’s floorplan is whether…

Designing and Developing Your Site

You’ve dreamed of owning a log home, and now you’re ready to start putting plans on paper. The first step in making your dream come true is to find the right piece of land. Are you looking for a cozy retreat in the mountains or a getaway at the lake? Do you want a remote location, or quick access to grocery stores, restaurants, and medical care? Whatever your needs, there are a few factors to consider as you begin to design and develop a “green” building site.  Site Selecti…

Second Thoughts

The dream of owning a second home is far from dead. Signs of the housing market’s resuscitation are visible around the country, with certain areas emerging as the hottest spots (and best real estate investments) you can make. With interest rates still incredibly low (5.25 percent for a 30-year fixed, as reported by Wells Fargo [www.wellsfargo.com] at the time of publication) and excellent builders still available and eager to work, these could be your best conditions for getting that…