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Thread: Time before "live in ready"?

  1. #1
    LHBA Member dustinfife's Avatar
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    Time before "live in ready"?

    Howdy!

    I suppose I'm anxious. My conference is this weekend, but I'm already antsy to get some answers. And, I'm quite certain (based on the answers I've seen in forums), I know the answer to my question will be "it depends." But, I'm going to ask anyway, in hopes I'll get a little more info that I currently have.

    What I want to know is how far into the log-home building process before my family and I can "move in." Say the whole thing takes 3 years to build (I'm hoping that's not an optimistic estimate). Could we move in an unfinished log cabin at 1 year? 2 years? Six months? Two weeks? I don't mind being surrounded by unfinished walls, plywood (or concrete) floors, no toilet but an temporary porta-poty. We just need a roof over our heads, a bit of heat during the winter, and hopefully a working kitchen to do the necessities.

    The reason I ask is we're moving from OK to NJ in a few weeks. We're in the process of house-hunting and are having a terrible time finding something we like. I figure why not live mortgage free in a trailer on land we pay cash for until this thing is built? But, I'm quite sure, if we (4 small kids, 2 dogs, and 2 adults) live in a trailer for 3 years, my wife would divorce me

    Any thoughts are appreciated.

  2. #2
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    It depends.

    That being said, codes can be different place to place, but as a general rule, you will need a working kitchen sink, and at least one working bathroom in order to get your CoO. A lot of times you will also need to have a certain amount of outside concrete work done, stoops, patios, wood decks, etc. Non finished electrical boxes will need to be capped off. If you plan on moving into a partially finished house, make sure you don't take a construction loan for the project. Banks don't like that. Also, don't move to New Jersey if you don't want to overpay for everything and have code headaches out the yin yang.

  3. #3
    you will have more flexibility if you move to a place that has fewer building codes.
    I know there was a family who built their basement, stacked their logs, put on their roof and then moved in to the basement for the rest of the build.

  4. #4
    LHBA Member dustinfife's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arrowman View Post
    It depends.

    ...Also, don't move to New Jersey if you don't want to overpay for everything and have code headaches out the yin yang.
    Agreed. NJ is atrocious, but that's where the job is at. Alas.

  5. #5
    LHBA Member dustinfife's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by panderson03 View Post
    you will have more flexibility if you move to a place that has fewer building codes.
    I know there was a family who built their basement, stacked their logs, put on their roof and then moved in to the basement for the rest of the build.
    Great idea!

  6. #6
    Put the trailer on site and get it approved for occupancy, one bedroom.
    Then build your log home and move into the bedrooms, ect when you feel comfortable with them....just don't get "too moved in". When you're ready for final inspection, move the stuff out and pretend you've never spent a moment inside that wasn't involved with the construction.

    Kitchen?
    Toilet?
    Those are in your trailer.

    What I'm trying to say is you "live" in the trailer, but you and the kids "sometimes" camp out on the property in the general vicinity of the log house under construction. That should keep your wife from getting cabin fever so bad that she wants to trade you in.

  7. #7
    LHBA Member loghousenut's Avatar
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    My situation is somewhat more complex. The Wife knows me as well as I know me. She swears she won't live in that place til it is completely finished and landscaped. I have a reputation as a slow finisher. We are currently in negotiations about asphalt on the driveway.


    Personally I could live there before the septic was hooked up, but that's just me.
    Every time I have strayed from the teachings of Skip Ellsworth it has cost me money.

  8. #8
    LHBA Member dustinfife's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LowKey View Post
    ...What I'm trying to say is you "live" in the trailer, but you and the kids "sometimes" camp out on the property in the general vicinity of the log house under construction. That should keep your wife from getting cabin fever so bad that she wants to trade you in.
    Love it (especially the wife not trading me in part )

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by dustinfife View Post
    Agreed. NJ is atrocious, but that's where the job is at. Alas.
    Also, bear in mind that your permit has a time limit on it (usually 12 months). If you go past that, there are usually only a finite amount of extensions (one, for six months) they will give you. If you are still not complete, you generally have to repermit. Which can be anywhere from a bottle of cheap scotch for your local inspector to $8000.

    Granted, this is all locality specific, but check the rules of the game before you get going. Given it's New Jersey, I would wager to say the permit has a short time duration, minimal extensions, and probably costs more than my first new car.

  10. #10
    LHBA Member rckclmbr428's Avatar
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    As short a time as 3 months, or as long as loghousenut takes, he's not done yet and is challenging the record holder for slowest build ever. Though I'm not sure if he's disqualified for working backwards or not.
    www.WileyLogHomes.com
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