Custom Log Home Design Ideas

Custom log home design ideas can be used to help create the dream log home you’ve always wanted. Perhaps you have some custom log home design ideas on paper as you’ve been collecting design ideas. That’s a great way to plan and organize your ideas, by making a scrapbook of the things you may want in your log home design. Here are some tips for custom designing your log home:

1. Explore and Select Your Log Home Style – select the log home style that you really want and like, a style that excites you. Will you prefer the manufactured or handcrafted log home style? Manufactured log homes are made with logs that are milled into a desired shape, producing uniform logs without taper. The logs used generally range in length from 10 to 18 feet. A custom log home design using manufactured logs can vary considerably in shape and appearance because the logs have different shapes and there are different corner styles. You can obtain kits ranging from just the logs and fasteners to more complete systems that include the roofing materials, doors, windows and even more.

A handcrafted custom log home design means handcrafters will strip the bark off of whole logs. Using special skills and tools, the handcrafter will fit each log into place. Handcrafted custom log home design and construction is labor intensive, and the construction process takes longer and usually costs more since so much work is done manually. This method attempts to preserve the natural shape of the tree, and each log is carefully trimmed and shaped for a specific location in the log shell. The logs may be assembled at the company’s yard, the pieces are numbered, taken apart and shipped to the homesite to be reassembled.

2. Visualize Home Traffic Flow – a good way to create a custom log home design is to take floorplans you like and pretend you’re coming home, entering and moving around in the home. Come in the front door — where will you place your coat? What do you see in front of you as you enter? Which way to the kitchen and pantry if you are carrying groceries? Visualize sitting in the living room or family room. Will you be entertaining guests? Is having a fireplace high on your list of priorities? Try to note where the bathroom or bathrooms are located. As you finish your shower, where are the towels hanging?

Another helpful exercise when visualizing custom log home design is to examine the things that you like about where you live now. What things would you like to keep and what are things you’d like to change and have in your new home? For example, perhaps you’ll want a much larger kitchen. Pay special attention to the kitchen work triangle — the distance between the sink, refrigerator and range or cooktop. Each one of these areas becomes a focal point in the kitchen and forms the three points of a triangle with different distances between them. Done correctly, proper custom log home design in the kitchen gives you the most efficient food preparation area layout. Walk through each room of the floorplan and see how the room feels and functions and how its location seems in relation to other rooms.

3. Plan Your Home Orientation and Layout – when creating a custom log home design, pay attention to your site and how the orientation of individual rooms will be done. Locate the bedrooms towards the cooler, nighttime north. Place your kitchen facing the east to catch the early morning sun. The living room and recreational room can have a kind of transitional orientation, facing the warm noon south sun. And the dining area can be oriented towards the late afternoon western sun. Natural light, window placement, orientation and views are powerful positive factors in human health and the comfort of your new home.

A great way to learn custom log home design ideas is to view log home plans that have been successfully built already. Use the speed of the internet to view plans, plans that you enjoy. Every plan that you review can give you custom log home design ideas that you had not thought of. Instead of trying to create brand new plans from scratch, you can save considerable time and money if you can find great plans that have already been built successfully somewhere. This means the plans will work. Just be sure the plans service can make the changes to the plans so they become exactly what you want. That way, you really can create the custom log home design that will provide you many years of enjoyment.

Copyright 2005 InfoSearch Publishing

New Ideas In Modern Home Design

Home trends change along with the needs of consumers and of the general population. Modern home design aims to satisfy those changing needs by providing simplistic design with loads of storage space–a common problem found in older homes where dwellers find it impossible, or at least challenging, to store their personal items in a logical and organized manner. The design must be capable of providing such solutions for the home to be functional, and that has architects, interior designers, and builders scrambling to come up with great ideas every year.

Given the opportunity to build simple home designs enable the homeowner to add personal touches to customize their future home so that it meets their own needs. For instance, a very outgoing and athletic family needs solutions to store away their sporting equipment when it’s not in use, but in a way that their equipment is easy to reach whenever necessary. This is what makes a home functional, and it is imperative in modern home design. Future homeowners can work side-by-side with architects to customize their homes to perfect them according to their individual lifestyles. It can be a small adjustment to increase the size of a closet, which could make all the difference, but would likely not greatly affect the budget.

New home ideas can turn an otherwise simple home into something spectacular, such as with adding features that would have been more common in older homes, like the ceiling medallions and crown moldings. Such features add beauty and interest to what would otherwise be very bland spaces. A smart idea that uses space wisely includes maximizing every square inch available, such as in the commonly wasted space beneath a staircase, which can be altered with fitted pull out drawers. This would provide space to store outerwear, footwear, and much more!

Focus on lighting–both artificial and natural light. The home can never have too much light, and so the budget should allow for numerous light sources throughout the home, from one room to the next. Keep in mind that one central ceiling-mounted light fixture just won’t do, and instead, aim for six light sources per room. As for natural light, with all the advances in insulated windows today, choose a design that lets the sun shine in through as many openings as possible.

Building and design trends today incorporate numerous innovative ideas for achieving the optimum comfort level, with interest to spare. Design software readily available to professionals and consumers alike allow each to develop a space in 3D that simplifies expression and enables those ideas to come alive, whether they are related to the must-have kitchen island or the fire pit in the center of the sunken living room. Knowing how to communicate visions and desires is the key to achieving the home of your dreams.

The High Price of Home Design

All too often I speak with friends, family, and home owners who know that they need to do something with their house — but they don’t know where to start. Maybe they are bored with their same old vinyl exterior, tired of the lack of green space or gardens out front, or envious of their neighbors custom patio and deck. We all know that feeling – but acting on improving your house is a whole different matter!

I have to admit, my family members are big fans of that addicting web site and App called Houzz. We scrolled through their iPad app for weeks on end looking for cool ideas that may have worked for us – when we decided to do a big home reno. But ideas are one thing – albeit a fantastic starting point – committing to a reno without actually seeing what YOUR house would look like is pretty darn scary!

That’s when we decided to hire a professional house designer to draw up some sketches of “what could be”. Unfortunately we must have forgot to have her also draw up a more concrete list of what her deliverables “would be” along with a firm price quote. *sigh*. But, she was a friend of a friend and we were anxious to get moving. Lesson Learned.

After nearly $1,000 in “designer fee’s,” we ended up with a couple pages of loose leaf paper that had some new design concepts sketched of our homes exterior – plus introductions to some of her contractor friends who would give us a “great deal” on the work. Needless to say – we declined.

We wanted to do something to our house – but in our haste we learned just how expensive professional designer fee’s can be. We didn’t want architectural drawings, schematics, plans for city approval… we wanted some basic ideas, colors, and concepts that we can could quickly say we either like or dislike. We didn’t want any pretentious expert to have sit down meetings with us about our motivations, desires, likes and dislikes… heck we just wanted someone to make our real estate look great! This simple and quick approach is something that professional designers often have a hard time doing – and fair enough. They want to display their best talents, best ideas, and best abilities to you – a potential client. And their time is worth money. Lot’s of money depending on who you hire!

But sometimes we just want to get it done. Make it quick – make it affordable – make it great.

So here are the top three tips to get you started… and remember, you should always start out with the basics. Play around with your own ideas surrounding colors, materials, and landscaping before ever hiring someone to spend thousand of dollars designing your dream… because you may just find that all you really wanted was a little help spurring your own imagination and giving you that quick glimpse into “what could be”.

1) Outsiders Opinion

This is so important – talk to friends, family, colleagues and see what they would suggest for your home. But don’t forget they can be a little nice. The real home run opinion is that of your neighbors… you know… the ones with the perfect lawn, seasonal flowers, and freshly painted window trims. They have a vested interest in you doing the right reno’s as it only helps their curb appeal!

2) Online Ideas

Visit apps and websites for home design and home improvement. Don’t spend hours – spend seconds scanning photos & videos. Find something that looks like your house and quickly note what you like and what you hate. Can you recreate that archway with your roofline? Would that outdoor rock work be suitable for your climate? Take note of the improvements or designs that stand out the most to you as being “difference makers” then try to think about whether they would work on your property.

3) Affordable Designer Options

The web has an abundance of highly talented and highly motivated individuals and companies. You can hire a professional design Company half way across the world who may be hungry for work, or an independent contractor from Croatia who has just the skills you need. Search for “freelancers” or “online contractors” and then find the perfect worker for your needs.

So before shelling out thousands of dollars for exterior and landscape designs – start of with the basics. New ideas don’t necessarily have to mean big bucks, and who knows – maybe you’ll discover your own inner designer!

Owner Builders – The Most Common Design Mistakes Made in Custom Home Design!

In my professional experience as a Home Construction Consultant, Developer & Construction Loan Expert I have had the pleasure of touring and viewing thousands of homes all throughout this beautiful country of ours! It never ceases to amaze me when I encounter that home that is so unique that I wonder to myself “Wow… the owner of that place will lose money when he tries to sell that house!”

9 times out of 10, when I see homes that make me think this it is because they have made a HUGE mistake in the features and design of their home! As a savvy consumer and soon to be Owner Builder it is my desire that you never become an example or statistic of “bad design” so let’s jump right in.

1. Do not design a home that is too unique no one else can appreciate!

For example, the dome shaped or triangular all-roof houses are in my professional opinion too unique! And for the sake of this conversation, “too unique” is defined as anything so far from the general consensus of public opinion on home design that if you ever had to sell the home people would be turned off by it. Now don’t get me wrong, I love watching all of the really cool and hip tv shows that feature people and their wacky homes. However most of those people are fairly wealthy and for those that are not, they plan on living in these homes forever. Unfortunately for those who do not plan on living in the homes indefinitely they will be in for a rude awakening when it comes time to sell and the potential buyers are few and far in between.

Let me explain! Now by all means I understand that you want a unique home that to some degree is different than maybe what the tract homebuilders are offering and different than other stuff you have seen, I am with you on that! I personally love pushing the envelope on design and cutting edge features in the home projects I develop and/or build however there is a line that we cannot cross.

2. Not using a Landscape Architect to design the landscaping.

I can’t tell you how many times I have shown homes that looked horrible from the curb but once you got past the door you were blown away by the interior! Never the less, in most cases, the indelible impression made first by the curb appeal or lack thereof stuck in the mind and overshadowed everything. Such as the case for you when you forsake having a landscape architect design how your yard will look. Some families I have consulted with have viewed the landscape architect as an expense, but after counseling with them many come to see this as the investment that it really is. Homes that have nice landscaped, well manicured lawns sell faster and for top dollar as opposed to homes that don’t have that curb appeal and well maintained lawn. Landscaping in the last several years has really caught on with more people spending lots of time outdoors. Nowadays, I have seen cases where people have spent huge sums of money on their landscaping and outdoor amenities such as patios, gazebos, pools and outdoor kitchens.

3. Designing a HUGE home that is too basic and/or box-like in it’s architecture!
Just because a home is big does not give it a pass to be box-like with no character! In the workbook section of the soon to be released “How to Build Your Custom Dream Home for Less” Owner Builder System I show photo examples to really drive home this point. I am really dumbfounded when I see these really large box-like structures as I just can’t believe that the designer and owners actually like what they created! Maybe beauty is truly in the eye of the beholder after all, however unfortunately the beholder isn’t buying houses! (I digress…)

I can recall a home over 30,000 square feet and it literally looked like an over-sized tennis shoe box in the middle of a field. There were no architectural elements to give the home an identity, such as gabled roof lines, bay windows, brick accents or trim elements. It didn’t even have any landscape to dress up the exterior and break it up a little bit, just (4) perfectly straight walls and a roof, Yuck!

One of the most important aspects of building your Custom Dream Home is doing what I call grassroots research, which is visiting as many open houses and model homes that you can that are comparable in price to the home you are planning to build. This will provide you with a really good road map and point of reference for design standards and benchmarks in that price range so that you can compare that to what you would like to design and build.

4. Cutting corners on the material selection to save a few bucks here or there! It is said in business that 1 of anything is very bad; you always want more than 1 way of getting business, more than 1 replacement for an employee etc. Well in custom home design, nearly anything that is white is bad unless we are talking about trim, cabinets or similar areas. Do not cut corners to save dollars on your home by choosing cheap counter tops, flooring, light fixtures and other design elements. The key to building a Custom Dream Home that is really custom is having a sound plan from the start so that you can get the amenities you want and deserve without sacrificing the integrity of the home.

In many cases, it is better to build a smaller well-equipped home than it is to build a larger home that is plain! I trust that you have found great value in these tips and I look forward to providing you with more informative articles and insights that will help make the planning of your Custom Dream Home a breeze! I wish you the best on your Custom Dream Home project and here’s to great design…

In my professional opinion, if you are building a Custom Home then there are some basic prerequisites that the home should have like solid surface counter tops, really nice carpet, hardwoods, tile flooring and separate showers to name a few. I am amazed when I tour a 7,000 square foot custom home only to see that the Master Bathroom has an all-white ceramic tile shower and linoleum flooring! Give me a break! Now maybe I sound a little overboard here but unless there are medical reasons for these types of selections and/or other important constraints you are setting yourself up for failure if you ever have to sell a home that has these types of material selections.