The Log Blog by Appalachian Log Structures

Log Home Building Budget - Step #2 in Planning for Success

Posted on Fri, Nov 23, 2012 @ 10:34 AM

fair oaks log homePlanning is the KEY to a successful log home building project.  Last time we reviewed the first of ten important steps when planning your dream log home - RESEARCH. 

Step #2 – Prequalify and Establish your Budget.  Even if you are in a cash equity situation and do not have to have a lending institution involved in your building project it is recommended that you set a budget for the project.  Be realistic when setting your budget and like any goal you set for yourself – write it down.

If you decide to use a lending institution, start the prequalification process early.  Keep in mind that “prequalified” means that the dollar amount determined by the lending institution is their best guess loan amout based on un-verified information that you have provided to them (income, debt, liabilities, etc).  Once you choose a lender and submit a loan application fee along with all of the other documentation required (Taxes, pay stubs, bank accounts, portfolios, floor plan, cost estimates, etc) they can determine an exact loan amount.

Once you have been prequalified and have set a realistic budget it will be easier to start investigating the size of log home or log home kit you can build for the amount determined.  We suggest not getting your heart set on a floor plan before being prequalified and setting a budget.  Knowing how much you can borrow will help you budget accordingly and to properly size your log home floor plan. 

Your local Log Home Building Consultants have assisted thousands of homeowners through this process so when you have questions, contact one of them.

 Next time – Step #3 – Selecting Your building site.

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Tags: log home, log homes, log home kits, build a log cabin

Building A Log Home - Research is #1 Key to Planning Success

Posted on Thu, Nov 15, 2012 @ 10:16 AM

Modified RichmondIt’s true.  Planning is the most time-consuming and important part of building a log home.  Over the next few weeks we will be reviewing ten steps that will bring you closer to making your best move yet!

Step #1 – RESEARCH.  Magazines, books, web pages, seminars, factory visits, etc are all excellent ways to start your research.  Look at the different shapes, sizes and corner styles that are offered and determine which one(s) you like best.  How do you want your log home building materials manufactured, in random length where you/your builder cut and fits the product at the job site, or pre-cut where product arrives ready to be assembled (or maybe a little of both)?  What  building materials do you want in your log home kit?  How is the wood protected from wood digesting insects and decay?  Does the log home manufacturer offer a warranty against decay?  Are the building components grade stamped to meet local building codes? 

These are just a sample of the many questions our homeowners asked us before investing in an Appalachian Log Structures Inc. material package.  They also tell us that this is the step they spent the most time doing, taking up to 12 months to gather, study and finally decide on a manufacturer.  By choosing your log home manufacturer as early in the process as possible, you’ll save time and effort as you continue to take the rest of the steps.

When you have questions call your local Log Home Consultant.  We’re here to assist you along the way.

Next time: Step #2 – Prequalify and Establishing a Budget.

Tags: log home, log home manufacturer, log home kits

Log Home Options Up to 50% Off

Posted on Thu, May 10, 2012 @ 02:35 PM

log cabin home discount

Save up to 50% off select log home options!

If you are thinking about a log cabin home building project, now is the time to get started and take advantage of these great savings!

Order your Appalachian Log Structures Predesigned or Custom log home Package by June 30, 2012 and take delivery by September 30, 2012 to receive up to a 50% discount on select options purchased.

  

Popular log home options include:

Metal collar tie plates

Porch, deck & stair railing

Heavy timber stair components

Interior log siding for gables, dormers or interior walls chinking

Log siding and log siding corners

High “R” roof insulation upgrade

Roof panel fasteners

 

 With our proven Cleartreat process, 25 year log wall warranty, and Premiere pre-cut log and beam system, all of these option products will add an enduring value to the log home of your dreams.

 

Note: This promotion may be combined with our 5% discount on ALSI Predesigned models! Discount on hand hewing and fixed gable glass are not applicable for this promotion.

Contact your ALSI Sales Representative or call 1-866-LOG-HOME
to take advantage of these fantastic savings NOW!

Tags: log cabin home, log home kits, log home packages, log home discounts

Who is Manufacturing your Log Home Package?

Posted on Thu, Mar 1, 2012 @ 04:17 PM

log home manufacturerThere are a lot of claims about being a log home kit manufacturer, but knowing the difference between a broker and a manufacturer is important.

A log home manufacturer owns and operates the machinery that cuts your log home building materials.  For those manufacturers belonging to the Log Home Council, like Appalachian Log Structures, we also provide quality grade stamped logs and timbers, as well as construction manuals, construction DVD's, on-site technical assistance and other such valuable services.  A few of the manufacturers, like Appalachian Log Structures, have their own drafting departments where they focus on providing homeowners with specialized drawings on how the materials are to be assembled.  Most manufacturers are very proud of their manufacturing facilities, and over the past 10+ years we've been offering Plant Tour/Seminars at our Princeton, WV facility, where we've hosted thousands of interested log home enthusiasts .  These people (many of which are now homeowners) tell us that visiting our log home manufacturing facility made them feel secure in the fact that they knew who and where their dream log cabin was being produced.

When doing research for your log home kit, you'll run across a few log home brokers.  Although advertised and promoted as a "Log Home Company" or manufacturer, log home brokers typically purchase the log home building materials from saw mills or sometimes from a log home manufacturer, or both!  The materials are then re-sold to consumers as being made by the "Log Home Company".  If you don't inquire, (or don't care), you'll never know who supplied and milled your log home building materials.

When its time to choose your manufacture/supplier - it's not a bad idea to visit their manufacturing facility.  You can learn so much more about the company you are going to be dealing with, as well as see first hand the quality of the product you are investing in.

Knowledge is power - be sure to educate yourself on not only the quality of the log home components you are purchasing, but know who you are dealing with, and where the log cabin kits are coming from...the manufacturer or someplace else!

You are invited to our Spring Plant Tour and Seminar being held later this month.  Contact your local Log Home Consultant to learn more.  Sign up soon as seats are limited!

Tags: dream log home, log cabin kits, log home manufacturer, log home kits

Comparing Log Home packages

Posted on Thu, Nov 3, 2011 @ 04:27 PM

price is right log home

 

If you’ve done any research at all comparing log home companies one of the first things you realized is that they all offer different types of packages.  When trying to compare “apples to apples” you soon learn that it is a virtually impossible task since the material packages are different as well as the quality and type of materials. 

                      Some examples:

  • Log wall material is pre-cut or linear foot?
  • Roof system -  2x convention frame, pre-manufactured truss or heavy timber?
  • Thickness of log, nominal or actual?
  • 2nd floor system - 2x, conventional frame, pre-manufactures truss or heavy timber.
  • Quality of windows/doors – wood, vinyl or clad?
  • Quality of sealants/fasteners?
  • Written warranty against wood digesting insects and decay?
  • Engineered for settling?

Assuming that each manufacturer offers the same products is incorrect.  It is not uncommon to discover that you have requested pricing from a producer that supplies only log and beam materials that are random length and pricing from another that includes materials that are extensively pre-cut and supply a dried-in structural shell.  With the pricing between the two log home producers being several thousands of dollars apart, we often find that folks think the lower priced estimate is better – until they discover the difference.  Sometime folks don’t “discover” the difference until it is too late!

When asking log home producers to provide an estimate for a certain floor plan it will be in your best interest to also provide the list of materials you would like included as well as the type and quality of materials you are expecting.  This will get you as close as possible to that “apples to apples” comparison you are looking for.

 To help you along, here is our Request for Estimate Checklist.  In addition our Packages and Pricing flyer is linked so you may see both the material list and pricing for our pre-cut and random-length materials.  For more detailed information please call on your local Independent Log Home Sales Consultant.  They are a GREAT resource for you to use throughout your log home building project.

Tags: log home, log cabin home, log home kits, log cabin

Making the grade - log home buying basics

Posted on Mon, Oct 3, 2011 @ 01:55 PM

log home gradeAll building codes require grade stamped materials for structural members that are used in residential and commercial construction. A new construction standard has been developed that is specific to log home wall construction. The International Code Council (ICC) 400-2007 Standard on the Design and Construction of Log Structures, states that “all logs used in the construction of log homes shall be stress graded and identified by the grade mark issued by an accredited log agency.”  The slope of grain, knots per foot and soft knots can weaken a log's structural strength. You may be able to get less expensive logs from a sawmill or log home manufacturer that doesn't grade, but you don't have the assurance that these logs will perform under the stress load of your completed home. Grading also looks for issues such as decay, checks and insect issues. And it's important to keep in mind that these criteria should not only apply to logs used in the walls, but for ridge beams, purlins, rafters—all structural wood components.

This grade stamp assures buyers that the logs that they are purchasing have met the code requirements and are allowed to be used in the construction of that residential or commercial log home project. Using graded logs not only assures you that you are building "legally" anywhere in the US, it gives you the knowledge of the likelihood of the performance of your logs over time. And, it gives you the ability to determine the value you are getting-the price versus quality comparison.

Appalachian Log Structures, Inc. (ALSI) has been providing quality grade stamped logs to our customers for 30 years.  Our graders have been certified and trained by Timber Product Inspection (TPI), the industry leader in inspection services.

Insist on a visual grade stamp to insure that your logs will meet this Standard when building a new log home!

Tags: log home, log homes, log cabin home, log home kits

LOG HOME BLOG - COMING SOON

Posted on Fri, Jun 10, 2011 @ 01:31 PM

Welcome to our new log home website. We are working on some great information to post on our blog and are excited to share it with you. The purpose of this blog will be to provide current tips and trends in log home construction including:

  • Designing a log cabin floor plan to meet your needs
  • Financing a log home
  • Building a log home and the construction process
  • Maintaining a beautiful log home
  • Pictures! Pictures! and more Pictures!

So check back soon and we will keep you posted on Facebook and Twitter!log home under construction

Tags: log home, log home cabins, log home kits