Understanding Log Home Pricing

Sue | May 3rd, 2019 - 7:03 pm
Several elements go into log home pricing. Owners can purchase just a log shell from Cowboy Log Homes, a complete dry-in shell, or a combination of log shell plus some other materials.
We begin with log shell pricing on three sizes of logs: the 6×8 D-log with square timbers, the 8×8 D-log with square timbers, and the 8″ diameter Swedish Cope with round logs. We also offer D-logs in up to 6×12 and 8×12 log sized. In the Swedish Cope logs we offer 7, 8, 9, 10, and 12 inch diameters wall logs.
“Square Timbers” and “Round Logs” refer to logs used for roof systems, ridge beams, trusses, purlins, rafters, floor joists, support posts, etc. Square Timbers are thick timbers that are square or rectangular in profile and are used for these locations. The Round Logs mean all of the log locations described are round, not square. We can change any of the square timbers into round for a log shell, and any round into square. It is all a personal choice and based on what you, the owner, want to see in your log home.

Log Home Dry-In Material Costs


Let me first walk through the material costs. We are happy to provide as much materials as you would like from us for the dry-in of your cabin. We price out various options separately to give the owners a choice of what materials they want to get from us and what they prefer to source locally.
Let me use our Madison Floor Plan as an example. I believe it was the Madison that caught your attention. The costs are broken down into the Log Shell, Dryin Materials, Windows, Exterior Doors, and Final Decking Materials. (We recently added the dryin package materials to the Madison floor plan page. It is listed below the log shell pricing break down.)
The $40,475 price  on the Madison floor plan page is based on  the 6×8 D-log Log Shell with Square Timbers, construction drawings, and delivery for up to 1,000 miles (we can go beyond 1,000 without a problem. We just have to check on the delivery costs.) The log shell for the Madison is what is shown in this sketch.
The 8×8 D-log with Square Timbers log shell is advertised for $45,475
The 8″ Swedish Cope log shell is listed for $45,950
For the interior log staircase and railing for one side and loft edge is prices as an option for $2,900.
Exterior log railing is priced as another optional upgrade for $2,800.
This means that the owner can choose one of three log sizes. The owner also has the flexibility of choosing whether or not they would the log staircase and railing or would prefer to purchase materials locally for these areas of the home. Owners are also able to request larger log sizes or changing square logs for round or round for square for the roof system and supports. (Please call for pricing.)
The dry-in materials are basically the other lumber needed to make the home work. Things like first floor subfloor, upper subfloor, framing for the dormers, roof framing, interior framing lumber, door and window bucks, roof sheeting, titanium for the roof, 1×6 pine tongue and groove for all ceilings, exterior trim, 1×6 pine tongue and groove for soffits. For the Madison these materials come to $37,950.
For the windows we base our cost on the Anderson 400 Series windows. You can choose any window company you would like, but this is just where we start.  The 400 Series has a very high energy efficiency ratings, the exterior is vinyl and the interior is wood and it has a wood jamb.The total for the windows, based on the Anderson 400, is $13,100. (This cost can be reduced a bit if we change the trapezoid windows to large rectangles.)


For the exterior doors, we again base our cost estimate on the Anderson 400 Series Entry Doors. You are welcome to get the doors where ever you prefer, but we include the 400 Series costs in the preliminary cost estimates. For the Madison, the Exterior Door Allowance is $3200.
For all the decks and covered porches, as shown on the Madison, the final decking cost, based on 5/4 solid cedar decking, is $5200.
Each home is redrawn and designed for where it is being shipped. These costs are a good place to begin, but they can vary some depending on the final shipping location. We built a log home last year at 7,500 foot elevation with 140 pounds of snow load. We had to increase the log roof system and do a few other things to compensate for the massive snow load, so it did increase the log material price some.
Other costs that vary depending on job site location and owner preferences include if the log home plans need to be engineered, what type of foundation is desired for the home, and how much cost and effort permitting and inspections total. Some states, such as Oregon, Washington, and California require that all home plans are reviewed by a structural engineer and are engineered stamped. Engineering may also be required for many area within city limits and in most of Colorado. Sometimes the owners or builder requests that a home plan be engineered. For the home pictured with this article, engineering was not required, but we, as general contractors, would not build it unless the owners paid for engineering. The snow load was just so heavy and there is also seismic movement in that area.
It is important to realize that the first price you see listed is a log shell price, not a price for all the materials necessary to dry your home in.  It may seem a bit confusing in the beginning, but we feel confident that you will enjoy the latitude to customize your home and your choice of materials based on your wants and desires. Often we see owners choose to purchase a lot of materials through our company because they feel a lot of assurance and confidence by having us choose the materials for them.
But the choice is up to you!
Cowboy Log Homes
Any projected costs, cost estimates, material costs, and estimated construction/ building costs, are only the opinion of Cowboy Log Homes and are drawn from our experience. Every home is custom tailored to meet our individual client's wants and desires. The construction of a log or timber home is based on two primary costs: material provided by the log home company and construction costs contracted with Cowboy Log Homes as the builder or another builder of the customer's choice. Final costs are obtained and contracted with each respectively. Cowboy Log Homes is simply the "glue" that helps bring these two together to provide a final culmination of a customer's project. * Please note photos and elevations may differ some from accompanying floor plans.
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