Frequently Asked Questions to eLoghomes
Please review the information below to get answers to your questions about Log Cabin Home Building:
1. What's the average price per square foot of just our log package?
The average price is $45 to $85 per heated square foot.
2. How much do our log homes cost to build per square foot?
Our log homes are estimated to cost anywhere between $180-$325 per square foot once fully built, depending on the part of the country and additional materials used.
3. How long does it take to build a log home?
From laying the foundation to completing the construction of your log home kits, it typically takes 6-12 months to complete the entire process. However, the amount of time can vary. Construction of the shell alone may take up to 1-2 months, or more, based on the size of the home.
4. What is the lifespan of a typical log home?
Log homes are celebrated for their enduring charm and timeless appeal, but you might be wondering how long a typical log home lasts. Understanding the factors that influence their longevity can provide insight into how log homes age and evolve over time. From the quality of construction materials to ongoing maintenance and environmental impacts, let’s explore the lifespan of a log home.
The Foundation: Quality of Construction
The lifespan of a log home begins with its construction. A well-built log home, using quality logs and craftsmanship, can last for generations. Solid, seasoned logs that have been properly treated and assembled contribute to the structural integrity of the home. The use of techniques that account for settling, proper joinery, and protection against moisture are crucial in ensuring the longevity of the log home.
Materials Matter: Wood Selection and Treatment
The type of wood used in constructing a log home plays a significant role in determining its lifespan. Durable, slow-growing wood species such as white pine are commonly favored for their natural resistance to decay and pests. Moreover, the treatment of logs with preservatives, stains, and sealants enhances their ability to withstand the elements and minimizes the effects of wear and tear over time.
Like any structure, log homes require ongoing care to maintain their beauty and longevity. Regular maintenance tasks such as staining, sealing, and inspecting for signs of rot, insect infestations, and water damage contribute to the extended life of the home. Addressing issues promptly prevents small concerns from escalating into larger, more costly problems.
The environment in which a log home resides significantly influences its lifespan. Log homes in regions with harsh weather conditions, high humidity, or a high incidence of pests might experience greater wear and tear over time. Conversely, log homes located in milder climates with proper drainage and ventilation can experience extended lifespans.
Care and Preservation
A log home’s lifespan is also influenced by the care it receives from its owners. Proper care, regular inspections, and addressing maintenance needs proactively contribute to the home’s longevity. Owners who take pride in their log homes and invest in their upkeep often find that their homes age gracefully, retaining their character and charm.
The Legacy: Generations to Come
A well-built and well-maintained log home has the potential to last for centuries. Some log homes from the 18th and 19th centuries still stand today, a testament to the enduring strength of wood and the craftsmanship of the past. Log homes that are passed down through generations become more than just dwellings; they become part of a family’s legacy, carrying stories, memories, and a deep connection to the past.
5. How can I get the home I want to fit my budget?
Some common approaches are to reduce the square footage or build on a slab. Our Log Home Specialists can help you with other ideas.
6. What's included in your log home materials package?
The materials package includes everything on the exterior except the top cover of the roof (shingles, metal roofing, etc.), the fixed trapezoidal glass in the upper gable, and the outside stairs to the grade. On the inside, all framing is done, including stairs and you will be ready for mechanical rough-in.
7. What's NOT included in your log home materials package?
The general answer, of course, is anything that’s not on our applicable materials list. But, the work and materials you will be responsible for include:
- Excavation, foundation, supports to grade. All site preparation.
- Roof shingles or metal roofing, fixed glass in upper gables.
- Exterior stairs/stair rails to grade (unless added to your eLoghomes materials package if distances to grades known)
- Mechanical systems: Electrical, HVAC, and plumbing;
- Finished flooring, framed interior wall coverings, finished stairs;
- All additional insulation
- Installation of eLoghomes supplied interior stair/loft rail systems
- Lighting fixtures;
- Cabinets, vanities, appliances;
- Preservative for exterior log and log sided walls;
- Driveway, landscaping.
8. What is the difference between your Silver Complete and Gold Premium Materials Packages?
- Low-E, Anderson Series 400 Vinyl Clad units and patio doors in terratone only are upgraded to Andersen Series 400 Vinyl Clad units with a choice of color
- 4×6 porch posts are upgraded to 8 in. -14 in. diameter Handcrafted Log porch posts
- Soffits and porch ceilings are upgraded from 3/8 in. rough sawn plywood to 1X6 White Pine Tongue & Groove V-Notch paneling
- Gable end overhangs are extended from 12 in. to 24 in.
- Final Blueprints sealed by an engineer licensed for your state (if needed)
9. Why don't you include trapped or fixed glass windows?
Because of the complexities involved in transporting those larger pieces of glass, it is much more cost-effective and reliable for our customers to purchase that locally, and have a professional installation company from your area install it. As part of our Construction Service, we will frame out the area for the fixed glass to be installed.
10. How can I get more info and specifications?
Most of our specifications are on our website in the log home gallery. You are always welcome to contact one of our Log Home Specialists as well.
11. Do I need to buy blueprints?
Blueprints are included as part of your log home materials package order, from the Preliminary Blueprint stage (elevations, floor plans, with revisions made in consultation with you) all the way to Final Blueprints (elevations, floor plans, subfloor, and roof framing plans, interior framing, porches/decks). We also supply a basic, preliminary foundation plan.
We will supply PDF’s of blueprints at no charge. If printed copies of final blueprints are required, we will provide up to 5 sets at an additional charge.
You can also purchase standard blueprints of our models for $279.95 after you’ve registered on our website before completing the agreement with eLoghomes, and that amount will be credited to you whenever you buy the material package.
12. Can we see floor plans online?
Yes, all models on our website display floor plans and elevations!
13. Can I change the floor plan of one of your models?
Yes. Our over 200 designs are all customizable.
14. Can I get it with a garage?
Yes. Any model can have a garage added, whether attached directly to the home, attached via open or closed breezeway, or detached from the house.
15. Are they available with wraparound porches?
Several models feature a wrap-around, or near wrap-around, porch as part of their design. But porches and decks can be added to virtually any area or side.
16. Can these be built on any type of foundation?
Yes, indeed! Our homes have been built on basements (using a variety of wall systems), crawl spaces, slab, and piers/pilings.
17. Do you have a catalog?
Our complete range of customizable homes, including floor plans, elevations, square footages, log sizes, styles, and corners, and more! – is on our website. We no longer provide catalogs so we can save more trees!
18. Can I come see these models?
We have several models at each of our Sales Centers, and we can often coordinate a visit to one of the customers’ homes in a convenient area for you to visit. Ask a Log Home Specialist for more information.
19. What is your warranty?
Our packages include a lifetime warranty extended to the original purchaser. For more information view our Warranty page.
20. Do your log homes meet all building codes?
Our homes are designed in accordance with the current International Residential Code (IRC) and meet, or exceed, all related minimum standards. Most areas use some version of the IRC, and/or incorporate its standards into their own. However, from time to time, there are local requirements which, once we are notified by the customer or general contractor of those details, we will make changes to our homes to accommodate those requirements.
21. Where do I obtain eLoghomes prices?
Once you register on our website and set up a log-in, all pricing will show up there! Our Log Home Specialists will contact you with additional information about any additional promotions and discounts then in effect.
22. How can I qualify for discounts?
Your first step is to simply register on our website. Following that, you’ll be contacted by one of our Log Home Specialists and hear about all promotions and discounts currently in effect.
23. Can I get financing?
We do not offer financing directly. However, we can refer you to a financial institution that offers construction loans for log homes, and you can be quickly pre-qualified.
24. How much time does it take from the time I order until I receive my log home materials package?
Our packages are typically delivered in 4 to 6 months, but that timing is subject to change based on our business at different times of the year.
25. What type of wood are your logs?
We exclusively use Eastern White Pine for our log walls and log siding. Eastern White Pine is one of the best species for log walls because of its:
- Superior Stability
- Strength and durability
- High insulation value
- Moderate checking
- Minimal knots
26. How are your logs graded?
Each log is graded by a trained grader at the mills that we work with directly. We specify Grade 1 Eastern White Pine.
27. Do you precut your log home packages?
Our logs are all cut from detailed blueprints for each home. Each log is numbered to represent where it should be placed during installation.
28. Are your logs pressure-treated?
No, our logs are intentionally not treated as half of each log will be inside your house for years and years to come.
29. Do the logs need to be treated?
After installation, you should treat the exterior with a specialized preservative for log walls. The exterior log and other wood surfaces are to be treated with a preservative (with UV protection built-in) within about 60 days of delivery. Re-treatments will generally be required every 4-5 years, but it’s important to both follow the preservative manufacturer’s specific recommendations. Some walls that are highly exposed to sun and wind may require more frequent treatment while sheltered walls (i.e. those beneath porch overhangs) may need to be re-treated less often. We do also offer a top brand of preservatives for sale.
30. What about termites?
We supply a termite shield with our log home packages, which are applied on top of your foundation. However, we do recommend further termite prevention, as with any type of home.
31. How often should a log home be stained / sealed?
Maintaining a log home is a delicate balance between preserving the wood’s integrity and protecting it from the elements. While there isn’t a one-size-fits-all answer due to varying environmental factors and the type of finish used, some general guidelines can help you preserve the durability and beauty of your log home. Let’s delve into the nuances of staining and sealing frequency to ensure your log home stands strong against the tests of time.
Understanding the Role of Staining and Sealing
Staining and sealing are crucial steps in log home maintenance. Stain enhances the wood’s natural beauty while offering a layer of protection against ultraviolet (UV) rays and moisture. Sealing, often performed alongside staining, forms a barrier that prevents water infiltration, which can lead to rot and decay. These treatments not only extend the life of your log home but also contribute to its aesthetic appeal.
Environmental Factors: The Influential Players
How often you should stain and seal your home depends on the environmental conditions in your area. Factors like the amount of direct sunlight, humidity levels, and the frequency of rain or snowfall impact the wear and tear on the logs. Log homes in regions with harsher climates, where the wood is subjected to more extreme fluctuations in weather, may require more frequent staining and sealing.
Type of Finish: Water-Based vs. Oil-Based Stains
The type of stain you choose for your log home also plays a role in determining the maintenance schedule.
Water-based stains are the preferred choice for log homes and are used most often by industry professionals. They are eco-friendly and easier to clean up, but they may require more frequent reapplication. Oil-based stains provide a nice finish, shielding it against the elements. But they can be difficult to apply and are often overapplied.
Consulting with a professional and considering the specific characteristics of your location can help you make an informed decision.
Average Frequency of Application
As a general guideline, log homes typically require staining and sealing every four to five years, more often in extreme conditions. This range accounts for the average environmental factors and finishes in play.
If your log home is in an area with intense sunlight, high humidity, or frequent rain, a shorter time frame might be wise. Conversely, if you’re in a milder climate, you might stretch the interval to five years, or more. Regular inspections of the logs and paying attention to any changes in the wood’s appearance can also guide your maintenance schedule.
Signs It’s Time: Visual Cues and Water Testing
Your log home will give you signals when it’s time for a refresh. Fading color, loss of water repellency, and a dull appearance are indications that the stain and seal have worn off. Additionally, you can perform a simple water test by sprinkling water on the logs. If the water beads up and rolls off, your stain and seal are still effective. If it soaks into the wood, it’s time to reapply.
Customized Approach: Consulting the Experts
Every log home is unique, so you should consult with professionals who specialize in log home maintenance. Experts can provide personalized recommendations tailored to your specific circumstances. They can assess your home’s exposure, the type of wood, the existing finish, and your local climate to help you determine the optimal staining and sealing schedule.
A Testament to Care: Nurturing Your Log Home
Staining and sealing are a core part of caring for your log home. The frequency with which you perform these tasks reflects your dedication to preserving the integrity and charm of your log home for years to come.
32. How do these homes hold up in a hotter climate?
Superbly! In fact, one of our most popular states is Florida!
33. Do log homes settle after construction?
Yes, like all new home construction, log homes do experience settling after construction. This natural and expected process is a result of the logs adjusting to their new environment. While it’s natural to have concerns about settling, it’s also important to understand why it happens, the implications of settling, and how to manage it.
The Science of Log Settling
The settling of log homes is primarily a response to changes in moisture content. This is why eLoghomes mills our seasoned logs to precise dimensions, allowing them to dry uniformly from end to end. When trees are transformed into logs and assembled into a home, they contain a certain level of moisture. As the logs are exposed to the drier indoor environment of the home, they begin to release this moisture. This process is a normal occurrence. This is why eLoghomes mills our seasoned logs to precise dimensions, allowing them to dry uniformly from one end to the other.
Implications for Your Log Home
Understanding that settling is a normal phase in your log home’s life is key to managing expectations. While settling doesn’t compromise the structural integrity of the home, it can lead to changes in the appearance of the logs. Checks might open up. It’s important to remember that these changes are part of the natural evolution of your log home and contribute to its character.
Managing Settling: Patience and Proactivity
While you can’t prevent settling, you can take steps to manage its effects and ensure the long-term stability of your log home. During the initial settling phase, it’s advisable to monitor the logs and address any issues that might arise. Some degree of settling is anticipated, but if you notice significant changes, consult with professionals experienced in log home construction.
Regular maintenance plays a crucial role in managing settling. Regularly inspect your log home’s exterior and interior for any changes, and address them promptly. Applying chinking—a flexible sealant that fills gaps between logs—can help mitigate drafts, enhance energy efficiency, and maintain the visual appeal of your log home. Routine inspections and proactive maintenance ensure that your log home remains comfortable and resilient as it settles into its environment.
Embracing the Journey
Settling is normal, and it’s generally not a cause for concern. Just as people adapt to new surroundings, log homes adapt to their environment as well. The settling process is a reflection of the dynamic relationship between wood and its surroundings, reminding us that nature is at the heart of log home living. As you watch your log home evolve and adjust over time, you’re witnessing the dance between craftsmanship and nature, and embracing the narrative of a home that’s truly alive.
34. Do you have a quality control program?
Yes. At every step of the process of building the log home shell, we have quality control steps to ensure the accuracy of the cuts and the overall quality of the logs.
35. What is your policy on broken or missing material?
Before we wrap each unit of material, and also take photographs before they are shipped. We also mark on each wrapped unit exactly what materials are in that unit. If something is reported missing, we check the packing list and our photographs to ensure that we loaded those materials. If our packing list and/or photographs show we missed something, we will replace the material at our expense.
For broken material, we will ask you to send photographs of the material (with something that shows scale if required). We’ll check those against our own photos to determine, as best we can, when and how the material became damaged and, if it’s clear we shipped the material in that condition, we will repair or replace it at our expense.
36. How does the company ensure that everything that has been paid for is delivered?
Our quality control program is designed to make sure of just that. Furthermore, we add a quantity of extra materials to each shipment to help resolve those rare instances when we might have missed something.
The most important thing you can do is to use the Packing List/Intended Use List that arrives with your delivery to (a) check off that all materials listed have been received and (b) insure that all materials are used for the specific use, and in the specific area, intended.
37. Who pays for the delivery of my log home?
Depending on the area of the country that the log home kit is delivered to, our team will provide a quote for shipment and delivery to your site. We offer highly competitive rates through our carriers.
38. What do I need to unload my log home materials package?
You will need a 6000-lb fork truck. You also need to make sure there is clear access to the site.
39. My site is pretty much on top of a mountain. Will your trucks have any problem getting to it?
That’s very possible. We caution every customer that, if there’s any question about site accessibility, an alternate unloading site should be identified prior to the arrival of the delivery truck(s). Each driver is responsible for his or her equipment, safety, the safety of others at the unloading site, and also bears in mind the possibility of damaging the road or any other property. So he or she makes the call when they arrive and check out the access, the unloading area, and the egress.
40. Do you deliver and/or build outside of the US?
We do ship (and have shipped) log home packages outside of the US.
41. Do you build log homes?
We install the materials that we sell, the complete shell of the log home, anywhere in the US. However, we do not build the entire home. Think of us as providing the “framing” of the home.
42. Do you charge mileage for a certain distance for construction?
Yes, our Construction Service pricing is different depending on the area of the US that you are planning to build, and the market rates in that region.
43. How do I find a good log home general contractor?
Our Log Home Specialists or customer service professionals can assist by recommending some experienced General Contractors in your area. However, the final choice of a GC, or your builder, is entirely up to you.
44. What is thermal mass and how does it apply to log homes?
Thermal mass refers to the ability of a material to absorb, store, and release heat energy over time. It plays a crucial role in the thermal performance of buildings, affecting their energy efficiency and comfort. In the context of log homes, thermal mass is particularly relevant because the logs themselves act as a form of thermal mass.
Here’s how thermal mass applies to log homes:
Temperature Regulation: Logs have a relatively high thermal mass compared to many other building materials, such as drywall or insulation. This means they can absorb and store heat during the day when the indoor temperature is higher (e.g., from sunlight or heating systems) and release that stored heat at night when the temperature drops. This process helps to regulate the indoor temperature, reducing temperature swings and maintaining a more comfortable living environment.
Energy Efficiency: The thermal mass of logs can contribute to the energy efficiency of log homes. During hot summer days, the logs can absorb excess heat, helping to keep the interior cooler and potentially reducing the need for air conditioning. Conversely, in the winter, the stored heat in the logs can assist in maintaining a warmer interior temperature, potentially reducing heating requirements. This can result in energy savings over time.
Comfort: Log homes often have a cozy and comfortable feel due, in part, to the thermal mass of the logs. They can create a more stable and even indoor temperature, reducing drafts and cold spots. This can lead to a sense of comfort and well-being for the occupants.
Design Considerations: When designing and constructing a log home, it’s essential to consider how the thermal mass of the logs will interact with other elements of the building, such as insulation and heating systems. Properly balancing these factors can help maximize the benefits of thermal mass while maintaining energy efficiency.
In summary, thermal mass, as exhibited by the logs in log homes, helps regulate indoor temperatures, improve energy efficiency, enhance comfort, and contribute to the unique charm of these homes. It’s a valuable property that should be considered during the design and construction of log homes to optimize their performance and livability.
45. How do I get plumbing and wiring in the log walls?
Log walls should be drilled for wall outlets on the first level and likewise for wall switches by entry doors. Then, provided an electrical box is on-site to use as a template, the logs are notched out for that piece. So, by the time the shell is complete, the log walls are electrician ready. Neither plumbing supply nor drain lines should be installed in an exterior wall, whether those walls are log or framed. Those lines should be installed under the home.
46. I'm pretty handy. Will I have any problem building one of your log homes myself?
An experienced carpenter or framer should be able to install our materials package as long as he or she will take the time to review all the instructional information we provide. If you do not have that kind of experience, we do not recommend installing the log home shell yourself.
47. Are you hiring or looking for contractors?
We are always looking for experienced and reputable contractors to work on installing our customer’s packages. Please contact us here.
48. Do you have a glossary of construction terms?
Yes, click here to view the glossary.