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Monthly Archives: April 2017

MYTH: Insurance companies won’t insure a log home

FACT: The primary reasons there might be difficulty is that the house is either poorly designed (a problem that a conventional home could also have and not be insured for) or it is located in a high-risk area. A high-risk area would include a rural setting where there are far more trees and fire hazards than there are firefighters to put out flames. While these rural areas do have less firefighting power and equipment, if you live in one of them, a log home tends to be significantly safer than a conventional home because the logs burn slowly. But, since this type of area is a common place for log homes to be built, it’s easy to see how the myth about insurance got started. If you find yourself in a position where you’ve been turned down by an insurance company, keep looking! Not all companies are the same and each will judge risk by different criteria.

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MYTH: Log homes are more expensive to build than conventional homes

FACT: Depending on where you look, you may see some people toting log homes as a cheaper alternative while others say, without a doubt, they are significantly more expensive. Before jumping on either assumption, first consider that a log home is likely going to be custom built so you have to compare its price to a traditional home that is also custom built. With any kind of customization, you will typically see increased costs but also increased options for things like more windows, larger bathrooms, higher-quality materials, etc. When you factor in the value of getting exactly what you want, the additional cost won’t seem as bad. Another way to look at it is in raw numbers and you will see that a comparable, conventional home will be up to 10% less than a log home. However, a log home can save you money on energy costs and is known to have a significantly higher resale value. Log walls also go up faster which will…

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MYTH: You will spend all your time maintaining your log home

FACT: Oddly enough, this myth and the myth that log homes are maintenance free are both pervasive. Neither is really true though since log homes require right around the same amount of maintenance as a traditional home. The idea of them being maintenance free started when log homes gained popularity in the 1970’s, and one of their selling features was that they required little upkeep. However, this was largely due to ignorance about required maintenance and a lack of products on the market to help preserve wood. This truth about maintenance also applies to the idea that log homes rot more easily. Rotting is only an increased risk when you don’t maintain the wood and/or if the house is poorly designed. Poor design elements include inadequate roof overhangs and rain gutters which will allow too much moisture to stay on the logs. To prevent rotting and other damage look for preservation products that are specifically designed for the timber industry to get the best quality…

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MYTH: Your log home will be dark and your energy costs will skyrocket

FACT: This is sort of the double whammy of myths. Not only do log homes have a reputation for being dark inside but also for taking up more energy. You’re in the dark and paying more for it, who wants that? There actually was some truth to this myth once upon a time when windows in log homes were smaller and poorly insulated. However, with window improvement and access to better designed lighting, log homes can be just as energy efficient and bright as their conventional counterparts. Wood is also known for absorbing light and this hasn’t changed, but the improved lighting and light interior walls (if you choose to have them) eliminate this issue. Even more to the point, energy efficiency in terms of heating and other factors are straight up false in a well-designed log home. Solid wood walls can even save you up to 15% in your energy costs which has been proven by scientific studies conducted by such reputable sources as…

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MYTH: Log Homes are a veritable buffet for termites

FACT: Yes, termites eat wood and yes, logs are wood so this might seem like an obvious problem for log home owners but that’s far from the whole story. In reality, you have about the same chance of having termites in a log home as you do in a traditional home. The insects will only be especially attracted to log homes built from green and unseasoned logs with bark still attached. However, once the wood dries over a few years, the insects are not anymore attracted to it than any other wood. The benefit of a log home is that you are likely to see termites sooner than you would in another home because they have no place to hide. This will help you to minimize damage and you can prevent it from happening at all by treating the soil around your home to deter them.

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MYTH: Log homes are more prone to fire damage

FACT: The truth is that traditional stick homes often sustain more damage than log homes because the logs will char on the outside, adding an additional layer of protection. Not only can this char be sanded away to reveal structurally viable wood, it helps to limit total damage to the structure. Log walls also don’t have internal cavities for fire to run rampant the way it would in a conventional home and the large, solid pieces of wood offer built in insulation and a slower burn rate even if they do catch fire. Still not convinced? Consider the fact that when you build a fire, you start with small pieces of wood, not big logs. If you have any experience with fire building you know how ridiculous it would be to try it that way because the larger logs simply will not start to burn as easily. Apply this same logic to a log home and you’ll see why fire hazards should go down your…

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