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Benefits of Log Homes

By: TC Thorn
Today's log homes can be just as big and luxurious as traditional stick-built homes, and they've got something your neighbor's home doesn't: logs. What kid didn't dream of having a lot home (or maybe a log tree fort) out in the woods somewhere? Well, some adults share that dream.
Whether you like the rustic look or just want to live in a house built from natural materials, a log home may be appealing to you. But are they a good investment? Are they a smart choice?
The short answer is yes. In fact, log homes have some benefits stick-built homes lack. Let's take a look.
1. They generally are made to a higher standard with superior craftsmanship and custom touches. Because of this, log homes regularly appraise higher than comparably sized conventional homes. Basically this means that, square foot for square foot, they have a higher resale value.
2. Log homes are sturdy, stand up well to the elements, and generally speaking last a long time. There are many stories of these houses surviving the worst Mother Nature has thrown at them, including the big 2005 hurricanes, Katrina and Rita. This shouldn't be surprising. Unlike walls in traditional homes, which are just frames covered with insulation and drywall, log homes are solid wood. There are still-standing, still-occupied log homes in Europe dating back more than 800 years.
3. The notion that log homes are warm and cozy isn't just fanciful thinking. Compared to a cold piece of drywall, wood is warm to the touch. Logs also have something called thermal mass going for them; all that dense, solid wood is energy efficient, keeping temperatures inside the home comfortable year around.
4. If your log home is built and sealed properly, it will be very energy efficient. This means you spend less money on heating and cooling throughout the year. Many log home manufacturers create kits designed to be 15-20% more efficient than a conventional home.
5. Log homes are usually more quiet than stick-built homes. Remember that thermal mass we talked about? Well, aside from being energy efficient, it's sound efficient. Those dense logs have sound-deadening effects. That means you can block out everything from outside noises to your kid's basement drum solos. No need for ear plugs, thank you.
6. One last benefit, is that it's easy to maintain log homes and keep them free of mold, mildew, and insect infestations. In traditional homes, there are sealed wall cavities where everything from mold, termites, and rats can get in and thrive. Log homes don't have those dank hollows. To inspect for problems, all you have to do is take a walk around your home and check out the condition of the logs. This makes it easy to catch problems earlier and get them taken care of before they become costly situations.
Generally speaking, the pros far outweigh the cons when it comes to choosing a log home. Whether it's for your primary residence, a vacation rental, or a place to retire down the road, a log home can keep you and your family warm and comfortable for years to come.
More information on log homes is available at the author's web site.

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