Log Homes, Log Home Kits and Prices

Planning

Deck Out Your Log Cabin

Log Cabin Decks

Log cabin decks are made for relaxing, socializing end enjoying the great outdoors.  By adding a Dog at Deck Gatedeck, you extend your living space, while increasing the value of your log cabin.  But before you rush off to the local hardware store to buy supplies, consider a few important factors.  First, check with local zoning authorities to obtain the appropriate permits.  Next you will want to consider:

Deck Location

Cabin Deck RailingSeriously consider where to place your deck.  Do you want to take advantage of the view of a nearby mountain range or lake?  Is it important to see the sunrise or the sunset?  Will the blistering setting sun cook your guests at summer barbecues?  Can it be conveniently located off the kitchen to ease outdoor dining?  Since the deck will probably be in place for decades, make sure it’s where you want it.

Deck Function

How do you plan to use your log cabin deck?  Grilling?  Dining?  Hanging out?  Does it need to be enclosed and gated to corral kids and pets?  Do you need seating built into the railing to capitalize on space?  Does your deck need to have electrical access and be reinforced to support a hot tub?  These considerations can impact size and shape.

Deck Material

Gone are the days when natural wood was the only option for log cabin decks.  With more options come more decisions.  When selecting a material, go with what suits the style of your log home, your personal taste and your budget.

Natural Wood

Pressure treated lumber has always been the number one choice for deck material.  It’s chemically treated to be resistant to insects and fungus. Unfortunately, it will take a beating from the elements and is very susceptible to splitting and warping.  Regular power washing and sealing is required to keep mold, mildew and dirt at bay.  Other natural wood choices include cedar and redwood.  Both are beautiful, naturally resistant to rot and sturdier than pressure treated lumber, but cost three times more.

Composite

Made of wood fibers and recycled plastic, composite deck material is more expensive than wood up

Composite Deck

Composite Deck

front but requires less maintenance.  In the long run, it will cost less.  Although there is a wide range of colors and stains, composite does not have the look and feel of hard wood.  It is weather and stain resistant

Plastic

This material is all plastic, sometimes using recycled components.  It will not crack or splinter and is resistant to decay.  Plastic tends to be slightly more expensive than composite.

Aluminum

If you’re looking for a powerhouse and don’t care if it looks like wood, aluminum may suit your log cabin deck.  Its tough, slip-resistant surface will not rust, rot, warp, splinter, crack or check.  Aluminum is lighter than wood but stronger.  You can find products with interlocking sections to prevent rain from leaking beneath.  As the most expensive option, the biggest drawback is the price.

Deck Decorating

Lastly, personalize your log cabin deck.  Of course you need table and chairs for outdoor dining.  Throw down an indoor/outdoor rug to create an outdoor living room or conversation area.  Create shade with a pergola with climbing plants.  For more ideas on creating outdoor spaces, check out our blog on Outdoor Living Space.

Firm Foundation

One of the most important decisions you make in building your log cabin is the foundation selection.  According to The International Association of Certified Home Inspectors (InterACHI) the purpose of a foundation is to “transfer the load of a structure to the earth and resist loads imposed by the earth.”  Several factors impact your foundation decision including climate, geography, water tables, topography, properties of the soil, local code requirements, personal preference and budget. Continue reading

Passing the Cabin Onto the Next Generation

Many years of happy memories have been created at the family log cabin.  Parents often want to keep tradition alive and pass the cabin down to their children.  Sometimes parents discover that while their children may have expressed an interest in keeping the cabin in the family after their parents’ deaths, not all of the children have the same level of interest.  The daughter may have fond Family at cabinrecollections of baking with mom in the kitchen and fishing with dad at the nearby pond while the son only remembers mosquitoes and spotty Wi-Fi.  Unless carefully planned, a gift that is intended to bring joy can cause tension and discord among family members. Continue reading

What is a Construction Loan?

Designing and building your dream log cabin home can be an exciting experience.  Don’t let concerns over financing the construction derail you.  There are options available if you don’t have cash upfront to cover building costs.

Many lenders offer construction loans to cover expenses during the log cabin building process.  These loans are usually available for single unit, detached properties that are primary residences or second homes.  The terms can be fixed rate or adjustable.  A schedule of draws is agreed on by the home owner, builder and lender.  Loan disbursements are made as work is completed on the log cabin.  During construction, the home owner makes interest only payments calculated based on the outstanding loan balance.

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Loving Your Cabin Loft

Log cabin lofts are great for extra sleeping quarters but they can be so much more!   These multipurpose spaces can be used for a myriad of things.   Here are some creative ways to make your log cabin loft work for you and your family.

Playroom – Kids can feel like they have their own hideout but they are still within supervisory distance.  They can build forts, play games and work on arts and crafts.  When they’re not playing, the loft can be a children’s study area.  It’s not as confined as bedroom but allows students to be part of the family without as many distractions.   Continue reading

Properly Insulating Your Log Home Kit

Even though logs can naturally store some heat, you may need to consider insulating your log home kit.   Insulation might not be necessary for log homes in mild climates or those only used seasonally.  However, if your cabin is a year-round residence in a colder climate, insulation is recommended.  Insulating walls, floors and ceilings will contribute to the energy efficiency and comfort of your log home. Continue reading

A-frame Log Cabin Kits Get A+!

You can recognize an A-frame log cabin by its triangular roof that resembles the letter “A.”  Even though they have been around for centuries, A-frames became increasingly prevalent in the mid-1950’s through the 1970’s.  Their popularity grew especially as vacation homes.  The numerous benefits of A-frame cabins explain why they are still sought after today. Continue reading