Category
Planning

Beauty and Function

I recently had a major operation that resulted in several months of recovery in my home. Although I’m in my 50s, after I had surgery I felt like I was 100. I couldn’t walk beyond a few steps, go up or down stairs, or see very well. I slowly recovered and now I’m doing well. During my recovery months I had a glimpse into what life might be like when I’m much older. The experience changed me in many ways, including how I’m going to design my log & timber ho…

Easy on the Environment

You hear a lot of lingo when talking about the environment and building: LEED certification, efficiency, green building, eco-friendly, sustainability. It can be overwhelming! But the simple truth is that making sensible choices in your home’s design can lead to lifelong benefits. A home that’s easy on the environment will also have lower annual operating costs, higher resale value, will consume less energy and water, and be a healthier place to live for years to come. Here are some areas of the interior…

Simple Complexity

Brad Norris graduated with a degree in architecture from Auburn University 25 years ago. His early career began with collaborating on projects in Greece, then he returned to the States, making Nashville, Tennessee his home for over two decades. Starting his own firm, Norris Architecture, in 2003, Brad, in his own words, creates “environments that utilize the primary principles of design: utility, durability, and beauty, to produce end results that reflect the unique character of each client.” Norris’s e…

Forever Classic

Probably more than any other style of house, a log cabin conjures up a sense of homestead and history, a place in which family can live over decades and generations. Logs, with their organic feeling, exude a sense of a handmade construction and are a huge draw for people who want a long-lasting home. These days, when people decide to build a log home, either as a primary or secondary residence, it is most likely the feeling of timelessness that draws them and resonates. Not all log construction is equal…

Saving Money on Energy Costs in Your Legacy Log Home

High fuel costs and economic pressures have prompted more homeowners to ferret out ways to save money on the energy costs associated with their homes. To help, the National Association of Home Builders’ Log Homes Council offers these nine simple ways to reduce energy costs, increase comfort, and make your log home a little greener. Use Passive Solar. Site the home to take advantage of the sun. In colder climates, a southern exposure for the family room and kitch…

Green Finishes

While all stains and finishes are regulated by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, “green” stains have exploded onto the market during the past decade, offering an attractive alternative for environmentally conscious homeowners. These water-based products often perform as well as their oilbased counterparts. However, interior designer Stephanie Hintz of Wisconsin Log Homes points out that some oil-based stains also are kind to the earth. “I…

Purchasing Lights & Appliances

When selecting lights and appliances for their new abodes, many log home owners are taking the “green” route and ferreting out options that are not only more environmentally friendly than the more traditional selections, but that also incur cost savings over time. Some of those savings come in the form of fewer replacements, while others show up as cost reductions on those monthly electricity bills.   One of the easiest ways to ensure that the appliances and lighting in your new home are green is b…

Living is Easy on the Water

When Rob Wrightman sits down to talk with clients about designing and building a new, waterfront log home, one of his first tasks is to explain how such abodes have more than one “face.” Whereas a log home in a more traditional setting usually has one showcase side for passers-by to admire and comment on, the waterfront log home has at least two. “This is a very important point when building on the water,” says Wrightman, CEO a…

Purchase Your Land

For Fred and Natasha Ruckel of New York City, the dream of owning a log cabin began one day when they were driving down the interstate. “Natasha and I saw a log model home off the highway,” Fred recalls. “She said that she had always wanted to have one, and so did I.” With floorplans completed and log package purchased, they bought land that offered great scenery and a perfect spot to site the home.  But, this is where the dream ended and the reality took over. “We had cleared…

Sold!

If you’re like most log home enthusiasts, you’ve invested months—even years—researching, designing, and planning your log home. And unless you’re a first-time homebuyer or have exceptionally deep pockets, you will have to sell your existing house to get the down payment for your log home. You should have a plan in place for selling your current home that’s just as well thought out as your log home plan of attack. Where Do You Begin?  First, decide whether you want to enlist the services of a real e…

Working Effectively with an Architect

After years of dreaming, you’re finally ready to make your dream home a reality—but between the first steps and the day you walk into your newly finished home, there are myriad options to consider and decisions to make. If you’re like most of us, you have a scrapbook (or the digital equivalent) of ideas and examples of the house of your dreams. Ideally, you’ve also got a realistic budget in mind and a mental list of wants and needs. Now it’s time to put pencil to p…

Building in Stages

Planning for both the present and the future presents an array of options for those considering the construction of a log home during challenging economic times.   Several financial factors have influenced the concept of log home construction in recent years. Money is tight, and lenders are setting the bar ever higher for borrowers. Cash down payments and overall equity positions weigh more heavily on the credit decision than anyone can remember, and it is a given that credit scores and payment his…