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Thread: Questions To Ask Before Purchasing A Log Home

  1. #1

    Questions To Ask Before Purchasing A Log Home

    I'm considering buying what appears to be a log home and I'd love critiques and questions. What should I be asking the real estate agent? What concerns do yall have about how it was built? I don't know much about log home building, so any information is welcome!

    Here's the home:



    a view of the inside



    As you can see the logs it's built with seem to be fairly thin and I'm not even 100% clear whether every outside wall is made using logs (like what about those spots between those big windows?). But it says it's built with "frame & log." and the outside seems to have been recently chinked. I'm basically wondering what questions I should be asking. I've read about roof overhangs helping to preserve a log cabin--and since this has three stories and a...a roof that's not hipped...then I assume it's kind of failing on that measure. And probably would fail no matter what, just because of the three floors and roof design. What does that mean for the home? And how can I find out how it was built? Should I ask to find out who the builder was? And when I find them, what do I ask them?

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    LHBA Member Shark's Avatar
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    It's impossible to tell from a far away picture like that. Where are you located?

    My initial thought would be to avoid it unless you have someone you can trust to do a very good inspection for rot/insect damage/sagging etc etc.

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  3. #3
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    Dear Desert Squatch,
    Share a link to the listing. Nobody here is going to steal it away from you. More pictures that we can see bigger would provide more detail of what we're looking at. Looks like the logs might be on a full concrete basement and in a dry climate. If that's the case, it might be just fine the way it is. For sure get a detailed home inspection from someone that will go over the outside with a fine tooth comb.

  4. #4
    LHBA Member loghousenut's Avatar
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    It looks like the kinduva place that could run away with your emotions. That can be dangerous. My Dad always said I should never love anything that can't love me back. My first wife proved him right.

    If this place were on the Oregon coast, I can assure you there would be little love that you would detect from it.

    In the Sonoran desert, it might be worth a Valentine's card and roses.

    Shark and Allen are both right. I'm inclined to say grab your wallet and run but it is worth more info.

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  5. #5
    I can't tell much from these photos because they are too small / blurry.

    But it does look like the place needs some work. Are you planning to do that work yourself or hire it out?

    I'm guessing you are planning to hire it out because you are here asking basic questions. So before you buy it, get some bids from professional renovators on fixing it up. Then you'll know what you are in for.

    In addition to the usual pre-purchase inspection, get at least one bid from a log home restoration company in that area. Not a builder, but a company that specializes in log home restoration. They will know what to look for beyond what a normal inspection would uncover.

    You should expect to pay for those bids. Because you have not yet bought the place, renovators are not going to want to waste their time doing a free inspection for you.

  6. #6
    Hah, thanks yall

    Quote Originally Posted by allen84 View Post
    Share a link to the listing.
    https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/5...1576515_zpid/?

    It's in Crestone, CO, so high desert with not a ton of precipitation (maybe 10 inches per year?). I won't get heading up there for a week or two so I haven't seen it myself yet, I'm just trying to educate myself before I do. It does seem like the owners were in the middle of a remodel and then decided "fuck it, we need to sell"...and I don't know why. But it's priced a lot lower than other stuff in the area.

    Thanks Steve I'll look around for log home restoration company, that definitely sounds smart.

    Yall have been really helpful!

  7. #7
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    Well, those pictures weren't much better, but I'm guessing that it's probably a stick frame with wood siding.

    And who still uses a 25 year old digital camera?

    The more I look at those pictures, the more I wonder what the heck the roof looks like.

    I think I figured it out. It's an even surface pitched at an angle. That's pretty neat.
    Last edited by allen84; 04-19-2022 at 09:08 AM.

  8. #8
    LHBA Member loghousenut's Avatar
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    An abandoned remodel could be just tired of it and bickering over paint color...

    Or it could be that they found the money pit. The stuff that has to be fixed, so the other stuff could be fixed, so the remodel can begin in ernest.

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    Every time I have strayed from the teachings of Skip Ellsworth it has cost me money.

    I love the mask mandate. I hardly ever have to bruh my teeth anymore.

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    Quote Originally Posted by loghousenut View Post
    An abandoned remodel could be just tired of it and bickering over paint color...

    Or it could be that they found the money pit. The stuff that has to be fixed, so the other stuff could be fixed, so the remodel can begin in ernest.

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    Any number of things. By the 30 second snip of surrounding properties I looked at, it may even be a short sale. I'd look at it. Nut may well be right. Slap paint on everything, do some other updates and repairs then sell it for about $400K. If it's a short sale, there won't be anything short about it but might be a great deal.

  10. #10
    LHBA Member mudflap's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by allen84 View Post
    Any number of things. By the 30 second snip of surrounding properties I looked at, it may even be a short sale. I'd look at it. Nut may well be right. Slap paint on everything, do some other updates and repairs then sell it for about $400K. If it's a short sale, there won't be anything short about it but might be a great deal.
    yeah, what Allen said; just don't paint the exterior stain it instead - if you stain it the outside, someone will buy it for $400k. If you paint the outside, all the schlubs over on that facebook log cabin ideas group will have a royal cow.


    And Allen didn't finish his thought:
    use the proceeds of the sale to build an LHBA home... (see my signature for pics, or ask anyone in this thread for photos of their little slice of heaven....). For around $100k, you could easily build a million dollar home - that would include buying a telehandler to stack the logs. (inside joke meant for LogHouseNut).... none of us are professional builders, btw... ok, maybe Steve.
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