events & planning

8 Steps To Your New Dream Home

These are the steps that are involved in building a new log, timber frame or hybrid home.

1. CHOOSE YOUR PROPERTY – The first step is to buy your land. Consider orientation to the sun, availability of utilities, well, septic, deed restrictions, zoning and slope. The cost of electric service, sanitation system, and your water well are very important budget items. You should also consider the expense of building the driveway and home site preparation. Any one of these important expenses can increase the total cost of building your new home by many thousands of dollars if your home site is a long distance from the main road or the site doesn’t perc, for instance. We are ready to assist you with our complimentary on-site inspection of your building location.
2. DECIDE ON THE STYLE – Pick the style of log and corner you prefer. Log profiles may be Square [flat], “D” log, Swedish Cope or full round. Corners may be dovetail, butt-and-pass, saddle-notch, or corner post [like timber frame]. Then there are options such as chinked, hand-hewn, rustic, or even hand peeled. The “look” or character may be anything from a Northwood’s cabin to a contemporary log home. Log sizes range from 6”x8�?up to 8”x12�? Click here to see our Log Style options.
If you are building a timber frame, handcrafted or hybrin home, there are also dozens of options that include frame styles, stones, bricks, shingles, shakes, bark, log finish and size among other options.

3. CALCULATE HOW MUCH HOUSE YOU CAN AFFORD – Your lender will be helpful in this area. We also have a worksheet available. It’s difficult to talk about anything else until you have an idea of what your budget is. Planning, in terms of square footage, style, and finishing details, is dependent on an understanding of your budget. And, don’t forget to leave something for landscaping, appliances, and possibly new furniture. Many folks want to ‘find out first how much a log home will cost.’ As a general rule, log is about the same as any custom home. Timber frame, handcrafted log and hybrid may be as much as two to three times more. But we suggest that you know your budget first.

4. ASSEMBLE YOUR DREAM TEAM – Search for a log home builder-dealer such as Strongwood of Georgia with:

Building Experience – Whether you’re an owner-builder, owner-partner, or want a turnkey home, they are your best resource.

The Look You Want – A variety of styles and building options.

Design Services In-house – It’s important to work with knowledgeable home designers.

Flexibility – A company that will work they way you want to build and on your schedule.

Quality – There are no standards in the log home industry. There are a few very good manufacturers and some good dealers, however. Ask questions regarding the variety of wood, drying process, how the logs are milled, the assembly system and warranty.

Ask if they belong to the Log Homes Council. This is your assurance of quality graded logs.

You can be assured that Strongwood meets and exceeds all of these criteria.
Notice that we did not list “look for a log home manufacturer or dealer with the floor plan you like.” Generally, most log home companies can build, or provide the packages for, most floor plans. It is a good idea to decide on a company as early in the process as possible. They will be more willing to spend time with you if they understand that there is some commitment. From the time you begin building until the time that your home or commercial building is complete, you will be working very closely with your log home company dealer and manufacturer. You want to work with someone whom you have confidence and who you like. There may be questions and problems as the project moves along. The professional that you chose as your log package provider, and your contractor, will solve the problems and communicate with you competently, if you have chosen the right one.

5. DETERMINE YOUR LEVEL OF PARTICIPATION – We offer a range of building options from providing only the log package to complete, turnkey homes. If you are an owner-builder who wants to actively participate in the building process as your own general contractor, we are available to design and provide your log home package plus do the log shell erection. We also offer complete project management services resulting in a totally finished home.
Our industry-leading programs include:

Owner-Builder Program – for folks who want to be there own general contractor or have a preferred general contractor in their area.

Owner-Partner Program – for those who wish to participate in some part of their home construction but do not have the expertise to be the general contractor.

Turnkey-Owner Program – Complete project management.  

6. SELECT YOUR FLOOR PLAN – If you have a floor plan in mind —whether a simple sketch or from a plan book —- we will help you customize it to fit your needs. We are experts at helping you get the most house within your budget. With your floor plan, home style, and property information, we can prepare a preliminary cost proposal for you. If you chose to make a small deposit, Strongwood will draw preliminary blue prints, elevations, and provide a price estimate for your log package. It is best not to depend completely on a company’s “ballpark�?prices unless they are based on a preliminary blue print. It is also important to understand that frequently the floor plans and elevations found in magazines do not match, have inaccurate measurements, or feature costly design elements. It is another reason why a preliminary blue print is very important.

7. PREPARE FINAL PLANS – After we fine-tune your preliminary plan, we will have final blue prints drawn. Then we will request construction bids, and review final plans with you. If you have enough time, make your deposit and get plans drawn 3 to 9 months before you anticipate starting construction. Remember, this step could occur as early as one year before you want a finished home.

8. BEGIN HOME CONSTRUCTION

This is a sample of the amount of time it will take to build your new home once final plans are completed:

Place your package order, obtain permits, and prepare your building site – 4 to 6 weeks

Pour foundation, basement, and stack log walls – 5 to 10 days

Make the house weather-tight with roof system, doors, and windows installed – 25 to 40 days

Complete a turnkey home – 90 to 140 days
With all the choices in the log home market, we cannot emphasize enough the importance of quality. Surprisingly, there is not always a relationship between price and quality. The best log home package constructed by a poor builder will result in a poor log home. The best builder in the world can’t turn a poorly engineered log or log package into a home that will last for generations, as they should.
At Strongwood Log and Timber Home Company of Georgia, our focus is on integrity and quality. We are experienced and trained to meet strictest standards to assure homeowners of a quality built home. We are backed by over 30 years of experience and an industry-leading lifetime warranty on your new home. There is no manufacturer in the world with a better drying system or higher graded logs. We are factory representatives for such world-class companies as Pella Windows, Perma-Chink and Emtek.
We understand that a new home is a significant investment and that our success and reputation depends on your complete satisfaction with your new home…. not just on the day it’s completed, but for a lifetime.