Log Cabin Kits vs. Park Models

If you want to offer an authentic log cabin experience to your guests, don’t settle for a cheap imitation.  Log cabin kits allow flexibility in designing a log cabin that is perfect for your campground or camping resort.  Park models may be cheaper up front, but there are other factors to consider.

Beware of Imitators

A park model is classified as a mobile home / recreational vehicle.  And like all vehicles, they start to depreciate in value immediately.  As a result they offer little to no added value to a property when it is appraised.  There is no practical difference in the use of park models than travel trailers or fifth-wheel trailers.  They are not ‘improvements’ to campgrounds any more than a travel trailer placed and used in a campground is.  A log cabin is a permanent structure and can go up in value just like a traditionally built house.

A log cabin kit is sturdier and will last longer than a park model.  Building materials of cabins are significantly higher grade than park models.  Log cabin kits must follow stricter building standards than park models which are only governed by the lower standards of recreation vehicles.

Log cabin kits can be delivered to almost any build location because they are assembled on site.  Park models can only be installed where they can be driven to while in one piece. If there are any tight turns or the location is hard to reach, a park model may never reach the destination.

park models or cabin kit

Cabins can be financed with traditional lending and amortized over longer time periods.  It may be harder to find financing for a park model if it’s not on a permanent foundation because they are considered personal property and not a fixed asset.

Park models are built on a chassis mounted on wheels.  They must remain on wheels, which limits the look of the exterior.   Added expenses are incurred when lattices, porches and decks are used to camouflage the wheels.  In addition, park models have steps since they must remain on wheels, which forces park models to be above ground level.

A Few Other Things to Know About Log Cabin Kits

  • Log cabins can comply with all ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) requirements.
  • Log cabins can meet any energy code.
  • Log cabins can meet any building code.
  • Log cabins can match other structural buildings on a property, such as a log multi-purpose building or log bathhouse.
  • Log cabins add property value.  See Why.

A Few Other Things to Know About Park Models

  • Park models are limited in their designs. They must be long and narrow and a maximum of 400 square feet.
  • Park models can be put in flood plains since they are technically movable.