Alaskan Log Homes FAQ
What are special building requirements in Alaska?
Ask questions, be sure your builder has adequate building experience in our cold climate, Going with the “better deal” might not be a better deal. Special consideration should be taken from every phase of development from soils testing and breaking ground, seismic, wind, elevation, and most importantly insulation. One of the most common and destructive problems with homes in this climate is having a poorly insulated and or a drafty home resulting in inefficient energy use, high utility bills, frost build up, moisture and dry rot damage, and lack of comfort.
How much does it cost to build a log home?
In years past, high labor costs associated with log homes cost considerably more to produce than conventionally framed homes. Although log homes are still a premium product, with today’s increased shipping and material costs, a locally produced log home can comparative to a traditionally build stick frame custom home. Therefore, the choice is not so much price as a desire to own and live in a log home.
What are the benefits/drawbacks of a log home?
Owning a log home can be the most satisfying and truly rewarding purchases of a lifetime. Unlike plastic and vinyl structures logs are in natural state and a log home is a living breathing entity and requires owner attention and maintenance. Periodic preventative maintenance including exterior weather protection, see our links to perma chink and Yukon finishes. Settling will occur in a new log home. Proper building techniques can manage it by incorporating allowances for settling within the structure, but it is common for some adjustments to be made during the first year or two.
What kinds of logs do you use and why?
We use white spruce locally harvested from Interior Alaska forests. With our short growing season these trees offer a tighter, grain strong, building characteristic. This creates a dense house log providing an improved thermal value and strength.
3-sided vs. full scribe
* 3-sided log homes(far right) are much faster to erect than the full scribe style and they can be more affordable to produce. The interior wall is smooth, allowing for a flat surface for interior decorations. Our 3-sided logs are locally milled in Goldstream Valley by Alaska Birchworks. They are available in either 6” or 8” dimensions. 8” logs offer a sturdier look along with greater thermal value. 6” logs can still provide for a reasonable small structure and are a bit more affordable.
* Full Scandinavian style scribed log homes are far more labor intensive to produce, but they make for a truly artistic and very comfortable home year round. Each log is carefully measured with a scribing tool then painstakingly shaped with a chainsaw and hand blade for a precise fit.