Log cabin kits are packages of logs that come with everything needed to build a dream log home. Cabin lovers can construct modular cabins using all the materials and detailed instructions. It offers a great way to save money and build a perfect cabin.
Log cabin kits include the building material needed to construct an entire cabin. With the proper planning, you can have a home for under $50,000. And that's definitely worth the price.
Log cabin kits can range from $125 to over $500 per square foot. However, the overall cost of the cabin can be drastically reduced if you build it yourself using the instructions included.
This article will explore everything you need to know about a log cabin kit. We will tell you how much it can cost and what you need to know before buying it.
Log cabin kits contain all the materials for the exterior finishes or the skeleton of your house. The rest of the furnishing for your timber homes is an additional cost. This can raise to a significant amount considering it includes things like flooring, cabinetry, finishing elements, and decor.
Some essential components of one company's log home kit may not be a part of another company's log cabin kit. Different log cabin kits vary in the building experience.
Before you buy your log home kit, you need to do your research. Let's take a look at a few things you should know.
If you are building a log cabin, you will need to hire home inspectors with experience. They will be able to identify major issues, allowing you to fix them early on.
These can be issues like decomposing logs, stains, or leaks in the wall. If your home inspector doesn't have log cabin home experience, they might miss out on some significant problems.
This would cause significant financial losses down the line, requiring major repairs.
Getting insurance for your modular cabin may be challenging. Unlike traditional homes, log homes have remote locations, require pest control, and more. As such, your dream cabin has a few options when it comes to insurance.
Many large insurance companies offer plans for a full DIY custom log home. However, these are specialized plans.
Once you have found a small cabin kit, you should research large insurance companies. These include firms like Geico, State Farm, and All-State. They would have custom plans for your dream house.
You can also look up more insurance firms in your area that specialize in tiny homes or pre-cut custom log homes.
Maintaining a log cabin is very different compared to a traditional home. It does not necessarily require more maintenance, but it needs regular upkeep. Therefore, before you get a log home kit, you must understand maintenance needs.
Some examples of the maintenance that your log cabin home will need are as follows:
This is a lesser-known fact, but bugs and pests love to make their homes in log cabins. These insects usually don't cause any major problems or damage to your log home. However, regular inspection of log cabins for bugs is recommended.
Your home can become home to many insects. These include carpenter bees, termites, and ants. Termites are especially destructive for log homes because they feed on the wood used to build log cabins.
Several other pests that can damage your log home are small. This includes rats, mice, raccoons, or squirrels. These animals seek shelter in large wood piles, and your log cabin makes for a nice wood pile. They are usually drawn to areas like chimneys or attics where they can't be easily found.
Another surprising (or unsurprising) threat to watch out for is the woodpecker. They can get drawn to your log cabin by following insects like bees and can cause significant damage to your home.
Traveling to your own log home can be difficult if it's in a remote location. Home builders tend to look for sites with stunning views. However, the downside of having a wonderful view of the mountains is that you need a 4x4 vehicle and off-road driving skills to get there.
You might find getting your remote cabin easier with a specially adapted car. Moreover, it can also turn dangerous quickly because cars not built for off-road cannot trek the treacherous terrain.
For example, in winter, steep asphalt driveways offer no friction. As such, a regular car won't be able to climb up to your regular home. So, you will need to park at the ground level and carry your groceries to the top on foot. It could be a more fun experience.
It depends on the log cabin kit company. However, most cabin kit manufacturers include log wall systems, windows, roofing systems, and doors. These materials can be found in most log home kits because they are needed to erect a complete basic structure.
Before purchasing your log cabin kit, you need to thoroughly research log home kits and find the right kit for you.
If you purchase a basic kit, you will also need some other things besides the base components. These can vary greatly based on your needs and style. However, here are a few examples of what you will need to source from third-party vendors:
Log homes that come with additional components will have other costs. The more money you spend on these cabins, the more material you will get for the assembly.
Log cabin kits cost anywhere from $125 to over $175 per square foot. Some basic/minimalistic log cabin kits cost around $100 per square foot. On the other hand, custom log home kits can cost up to $300 per square foot.
The price of the kit is affected by the quality of the materials included. It's also affected by what's included in the package.
Three different types of log cabin kits are widely used. A-Frame cabin kit, pre-fab cabin kits, and custom log cabin kits.
The A-Frame log cabin kit can earn around $125 to $175 per square foot. The prefabricated log cabin kits range between $80 to $230 per square foot. Custom log cabin kits can get pricey quickly. This bespoke log cabin kit can range from $300 to over $500 per square foot.
When building a log cabin, some of the basic expenses you may incur include the following:
There are also some additional costs like:
The house can be completed at a lower price if you are ready to do most of the assembly yourself. Alternatively, you can hire a local builder who might do the work for less money compared to big construction companies.
Once you have mildly built your log home, there are expenses for running it. These include things like sewage, power, and driveway access. If you plan, you can save between $350 to $1,500 per year.
On average, it costs around $30,000 to build a log cabin. However, the sticker price greatly varies due to different factors.
First comes site prep. This includes things like excavation. Home builders can charge around $3,090 for this alone.
Next, if you are trying to build a larger cabin, it would cost more. Alternatively, a smaller log cabin is more energy efficient and costs less.
You can also significantly reduce the total cost by doing most of the construction work yourself. That's what most log home kits allow you to do. You can stay under $50,000 for the house if you do this. But you would need to buy power tools if you don't have any.
The region where you build your home also affects the price. The South is generally more favorable, costing around $125 per 200 square feet.
Building log cabins in remote areas can go up from $125,000 to $175,000 for big, 1500-square-foot cabins. However, the prices can reduce drastically by over $100,000 if you find a flat surface for the building site.
Building a log house using a log cabin kit has pros and cons. It can be either a rewarding experience or unnecessary labor, based on how you see it.
Let's take a look at a few advantages and disadvantages.
Log cabin kits contain pre-treated logs with materials needed to protect against bugs and rot. If you buy logs on your own, they won't be treated. This makes them more susceptible to degradation over time, though.
The logs in a cabin kit are treated at a treatment facility. Over there, airtight chambers are used to ensure that the treatment materials penetrate deep into the wood.
It isn't easy to replicate this process without a treatment plant.
All the logs in a cabin kit are the same. They have the same measurements and can be easily replaced if damaged. You can also order more logs to expand on your initial design.
These logs would fit perfectly with your current skeleton and make it easy to maintain your home.
Cabin kit companies have tonnes of experience with design and troubleshooting. They create the kits in a way to avoid problems in the future. Therefore, a cabin kit makes for a safer home than getting logs.
A log cabin kit company can also help you build your home. Moreover, even before the building stage, they can help you with the design and quote you how much it would cost.
Every log cabin kit is designed to be DIY. It can be a fun activity to build your own home.
If you want to avoid doing it yourself, the company you buy your log cabin kit from can send someone to help build it for you.
The biggest drawback to building a log home using a log cabin kit is that it doesn't include utilities like plumbing, electricity, etc.
These incur additional costs that need to be considered beforehand.
If you are building a log home, you need to make sure that you understand this caveat.
Log cabin kits are supposed to be customizable DIY kits that offer a fun experience. However, they also come with additional costs, shipping delays, and no plumbing. If that bothers you, then they are probably not for you.
If you are willing to put in the hard work and find the right sight, the price can reduce drastically. You can build yourself a home for under $50,000. That's a very good price in this economy. So, they are worth it if you don't mind the hard work.
With the cost of a complete home going as low as $50,000, log cabin kits are certainly worth it if you are willing to do the work.
If not, you can also get other pre-fab tiny homes. The building parts of these homes are shipped to your site, and the entire structure is assembled within hours.
Find answers — straight from the author — for the most common questions about this article.