Advantages and Disadvantages of Log Home Living

by Rachel Laurendeau on December 13, 2012

With log home and log cabin building on the rise in many parts of the country, we thought it would be worth taking a look at some of the benefits and problems associated with log home building and living.

Environmentally friendly – using “salvage” timber when building a log home makes it even more eco-friendly than you might already expect. Salvage trees are dead trees that are either standing or have fallen and are selectively harvested from publicly or privately owned land. In some cases the trees may not be dead yet but have succumbed to a pest such as the pine bark beetle or wooly adelgid. Harvesting those trees is part of good forest management.

Naturally efficient – log homes tend to be naturally energy efficient as the wood naturally insulates from the cold of winter and heat of summer. These homes tend to be naturally warm and cozy.

Looks and value – one of the main reasons people are drawn to log homes is simply their esthetic appeal. No matter the scale of the log home, there is a beautiful marriage of the traditional, the majestic and the rustic. A well-maintained log home or one that has been through a proper log home restoration and home improvements will hold its value or increase in value over time.

More regular maintenance – log homes do tend to need more non-cosmetic maintenance and routine work than do conventional homes. This can include general inspections and overall maintenance such as caulking and sealing the home.

Cost – it can cost anywhere from 5 to 50 per cent more to build a log home as compared to a conventional home due to higher material and labor costs to build a log home. Frequently, the cost is also higher because custom features such as log staircases, dormers or large decks are chosen.

Kits – log home purists would argue that kit homes are not “real” log homes because a) they use milled timber rather than full logs b) the kits are shipped on the backs of trucks, often across country rather than using local trees c) log cabins made from kits are prone to drastic settling and even rotting.

If you have weighed the pros and cons of log home living and are interested in building a log home or cabin, contact a reputable log home builder with a long history and plenty of local knowledge.

Resources: Wise Living Journal and Log Home Builders Association

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