Maybe it’s Covid or maybe people are just fed up with the city and ready to head to the country to realize their dream of living in a log cabin. Whatever the reason is, countless people are packing up and moving all over the country.  There is evidence of this in real estate trends and contractors schedules. We’ve polled land brokers and realtors across the country and the consensus is that quality land is selling fast.  Additionally, contractors in various parts of the country are booked out in some cases 2 years or more.  As a result, it is becoming increasingly difficult for families looking to relocate and build a dream home in a rapid fashion. Today, we want to discuss a general timeframe outline to help you gauge what to expect as well as share insider secrets to help you collapse the time investment.

Tip #1

Start Researching Your Team Early. Part of the process of planning for your dream home is finding the right people. Knowing who you want to design and build your home is important, but what is even more important is knowing what their availability is. 

You may start your search online, but online research does not always tell you a lot about whether the contractors are good.

Insider Secret : Typically, the top contractors are booked a year or more in advance and sometimes have very little web presence since the majority of their projects come by word of mouth making the need for online advertising unneccessary. One suggestion is to ask realtors and land brokers in the area for recommendations. 

For more suggestions on finding the right team read our previous blog article.

Tip #2

Uncover the Earth. It is quite disappointing to discover your build site is on a bed of rocks or in a flood plane. The good news is that these situations do not make building impossible. But it will definitely lengthen the prep time causing construction to be pushed back.

Insider Secret: Knowing the ground conditions ahead of time will help you plan accordingly for your timeframe and budget rather than be left with unexpected surprises.

How to test the ground: If you already own land, having a perc test done will give you an idea of what you are getting into.  If you’re looking at a property and thinking of buying it, but don’t want to invest in a professional test you can start with asking the neighbors what they might have experienced or have your contractor walk the property with you.

There are other factors to take into consideration when buying land that can have impact on the timeliness of construction.  Consider listening to our interview with Jaclyn Wakefield about buying land.

Tip #3

 Share Your Budget! Often people are reluctant to share the budget they have in mind for the project. This is more detrimental than helpful especially when walking into a meeting with an Architect or Draftsman. To ensure you get a house you love within the parameters you set; share your budget numbers early.

Draftsmen will aim to design a house that is in your budget because, like you, they want the project moving forward in a timely fashion.

Insider Secret: When the first draft is in alignment with the budget parameters you set, it avoids making drastic time sucking changes on the 2nd and 3rd revisions. In order to keep the project moving it helps to have clear communication. 

(If you need help Determining Your Budget Click Here)

Tip #4

Be Clear About What You Want. Before meeting with your designer get as clear as possible about what features are a must for you in your dream home. Much time is wasted when people are not sure about what they want before hand because they end up him-hawing over decisions. Being set on things like what log style do you prefer, how many square feet do you need, general layout ideas, and how will your furniture be placed are all key factors that can create a quality first draft.

Insider Secret: Coming to the initial design meeting with printed images to display your ideas is very helpful, especially when you identify what you like best in the image and if there is anything in the image you do not like. “Clients that have Pinterest boards or Magazine cut outs are the easiest to design for. It really helps me nail that first draft.” says Stuart Yoder, Caribou Creek Log Homes Draftsman.

If you would like help getting clear on what features you prefer read Designing Your Dream Log Home.

Tip #5

Get the plans done! Part of the reason we shared this post is because we have had quite a few people reach out to us who are eager to build their home within the next 6 months. This timeframe is not unrealistic IF you already have location, budget, and A CONTRACTOR! We’ve noticed this is the part that people are getting stuck with the most because many contractors are booked a year or two in advance right now.

Insider Secret: We have heard from clients that they are struggling to get a contractor to take them seriously. There is a way to fix that … Pay for plans. Yup, have the plans in hand, have the location, have the budget and many contractors schedules will suddenly be more flexible.

We realize that this process can feel overwhelming because there is so much information to take in and to consider. If you are just in the beginning stages of planning your cabin feel free to schedule a call with one of our log consultants. If you aren’t quite ready to make that leap, consider reading our post 5 Steps To Your Dream Log Home.

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