Our last couple of blogs have been on log home planning and I’m going to continue that in todays as well. It only makes sense to make every dollar count in your log home project and keeping things simple and efficient helps make that happen. Sometimes a log home budget will come up a bit less than the whole project. Items such as well, septic, driveways and permits have to be accounted in that budget. Too many people concentrate just on the plans and build costs and at times forget about these major items that are part of the project. As log home builders in Minnesota we have seen and built many shapes and sizes of log homes and have built smaller homes for higher square footage costs than some larger ones. How does that happen? Upgrades such as granite countertops, high end plumbing and lighting fixtures and expensive flooring all add to that end cost. If you project is coming in a bit higher than where you are comfortable at then we can look at the options you want and maybe find a less expensive option that still fills the need.
Sometimes making the floor plan smaller will help but if we are close on costs maybe a different log profile will drop expense enough to still keep your perfect floor plan how you want it. Our hybrid option of rustic homes fits this example perfect. We can use exterior log as an accent along with shakes or rustic siding and some exterior stone. The rustic look is still there and costs have been reduced a bit. Your log porch and log railings on the deck are there on the exterior and the interior log completes the look on the inside.
Kitchens and bath options can add up in a hurry in cabinetry and fixtures. Appliances have a wide range of costs and options and are another way of saving on your log home budget. You can always upgrade appliances in the future.
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As Minnesota log home builders we have seen all kinds of log home designs, shapes and sizes. Many of these log homes or cabins are designed to fit the lot and building site, take in a view and incorporate the lifestyle of the home owner. One thing that we see that is consistent here in Minnesota and Wisconsin is log style. The full log homes we build are either double round or “D” log and the half log homes we build always use a round, rustic half log. Although some here in the upper midwest opt for square log or matching half log we haven’t built many with that log style. Since 1999 we haven’t built on that got chinking either. Every log home we have built has been designed to use caulking rather than chinking. This part of the U.S. sees that style of home and in the southern regions you tend to see more square log construction with chinking. There is nothing wrong or better with either, just regional style and preference to keep in mind while planning your log home.
Porches: Porches and log homes go hand in hand. While planning, make sure the porch isn’t obstructing the view you are trying to take in. We will help you design the porch so support posts or walls aren’t blocking the view from the inside of your log home. When it comes to a three or four season porch consider taller windows. You are going to be spending a lot of time in your porch and you aren’t going to want to be struggling to look up and out of your porch windows. Bring the outside in and go with taller windows.
Fireplaces: Many people tend to focus on fireplace location and treat it as the focal point of the great room. In reality, it seems the TV tends to be the focal point over time. This may be more true if you are living in your log home all year. As a seasonal, weekend cabin the TV may have a little less importance. Consider the fireplace and TV location while you are sketching out your dream log cabin. So many over the years have incorporated the fireplace on the wall that is facing the primary view from the home. On a very wide great room that is fine but if the great room is narrowing you will be sacrificing window space to incorporate the fireplace to be part of the view. We suggest going with larger windows so you can take in the view better and moving the fireplace off to the side. Keep this in mind while planning out the fireplace and TV locations.
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