Misconceptions About Log Homes
Misconceptions About Log Homes
There are a lot of misconceptions and misunderstandings about the longevity and efficiency of a handcrafted log home. The article below will “debunk” some of those statements backed by scientific research.
Log homes are not energy efficient
Handcrafted log home walls have comparable R-values to what you get with standard construction. However we have noted that our homes are often easier to heat than what you would expect from the R-values. There is more to the story — thermal mass. Logs offer better thermal performance based upon its mass.
This is why professionally designed log homes are still being built in very cold climates such as Northern Canada, Alaska, Nordic Countries and Russia.
Termites and other wood boring insects will be attracted to a log home
Three words: WESTERN RED-CEDAR. Not only does it have a stunning beauty, the many benefits of Western Red Cedar include that it is naturally resistant to insect attacks. Bugs do not like the smell or oily texture of Western Red-cedar. Almost anything you build with it will last longer and require less maintenance.
Log homes are more expensive than a conventional home
Some of our smaller log homes start at just under $100,000. Canadian dollars! A brand new truck can cost upwards of $80,000, it’s funny to think that you could drive around in something that would cost around the same as something you could live in. With today’s pricing on average, it’ll cost $306,677 to build a house. That’s about $200 per square foot, and that’s on the low side.
The average ‘per square foot’ price of a Cascade Handcrafted log home shell is $70-$90 per square foot (pending design), plus the cost of the interior finishing. *This pricing is purely an approximation, but as you can see it is very comparable to building a “conventional” house.
Log homes will rot easily
Not only does it have a stunning beauty, the many benefits of Western Red Cedar include that it’s a highly revered, durable wood is naturally resistant to rot and decay. Almost anything you build with it will last longer and require less maintenance.
There is no such thing as dry rot as wood must be quite moist to rot. So a properly designed log home with adequate roof overhangs, rain gutters, down spouts and periodic maintenance, will last centuries.
Log Homes require more time to build than a conventional stud home
The timeline for getting from the selection of your customized floor plan to being ready to build goes through a lot of different processes. These add up to anywhere from 4 (at best) to 6 months, where a “conventional” home can take anywhere from 6 to 8 months. You can learn more by visiting our web page on Log Home Timelines.
Most contractors cannot build a log home.
This is not true. If they do not want to build it, it is not because the system is too complex but rather they are like the old dog that doesn’t want to learn new tricks! In my many years of experience I have found that a first time contractor can build a log home. The final product will depend on his willingness to put the same degree of craftsmanship into the log home as he does the frame home that he has built in the past.
A log home is hard to maintain.
In our present age of “space age” materials the public has been swamped with claims of low maintenance. When motor vehicles used to have the oil changed at 1,500 miles the claim of the sales person is to change the oil at 6,000 miles. Counter tops, siding, windows and roofing all give the claim of longevity and low maintenance. Well, to use an old adage, if it is worth owning it is worth taking care of.
The first step in the maintenance of the log home is proper design (The Complete Guide to Log Homes). The next step is periodic maintenance with a good stain purchased from a company that specializes in log home products and not something off the shelf of a local discount store.
The exterior of the home is the main area of maintenance that must be taken care of during the life of the home. The interior stained or varnished walls will never need to be redone to any normal failure. If little Johnny smears the walls with marker or crayon, then drastic steps must be taken to bring the walls back to their original condition. Always remember that conventional homes with an exterior of paint must be refurbished periodically as well. There is no free lunch and there is no such thing as minimal or extended maintenance.