Without any prior knowledge, it would be easy to assume that building a timber frame home is the same as any custom home. While there are some similarities, it’s really like comparing apples to oranges. Considering the extra production, craftsmanship and materials that go into a timber frame home, the process becomes much more complex, but it can be done!
Have you ever driven by a home that really caught your eye? It’s usually the lines of a house – the placement of an unusual window or the combination of materials used, or maybe the welcoming front porch. The home stands out from the others around it and, more often than not, expresses the personality of the people within.
Not just anybody can walk into a bank off the street and qualify for a loan—especially since the banking crisis in 2008. Banks now use stricter qualification processes to approve individuals for home loans to reduce foreclosure and delinquency rates.
This isn’t a bad thing, but it does mean that you should understand the basic qualifications for a home loan. Most loan officers are going to look at these four things.
Lately we’ve been getting a lot of design requests for one level timber frame homes from clients looking for the perfect ‘forever home’. ‘Ranchers’, as these rectangular homes were once called, are perfect for those who are looking for a grand home with a simple and accessible floor plan. They can come in a variety of styles, from rustic to modern to mountain or even Mediterranean. This only serves to further boost their popularity with home builders, and these layouts are an excellent choice for timber frame homes.
The one level rancher rose to prominence in the 1950’s, usually boasting a square footage of around 1500. California-style ranchers were more rambling and built in an L or T shape with lots of windows and terraces. In the east, you found more compact ranchers with covered porches or a carport attached. A few builders would introduce open roofs or beams in the ceilings which only lent to their attractiveness. Modern ranch style homes featured angled or sloped rooflines also featured open rafters in the ceilings. The ranch style home waned in popularity for some time, but the one level style of living is making a comeback, and for good reason.
Timber framing has been practiced and refined for more than 1000 years now and in many different cultures. In each culture the wood species traditionally employed would have been the strongest, largest, and most abundant species available.
The Great Halls of England are timber framed using English oak. Colonial America saw use of Eastern white pine, spruce, maple, and the oaks. Timber framing in Appalachia added Tulip poplar and even American chestnut. Bald cypress joins the list for projects benefiting from a weather-resistant species. On America’s West coast Douglas fir, Western red cedar, Western white pine, the Redwoods, and Sugar pine all saw use in timber framed structures.
Throughout the past three decades of this ongoing timber frame revival, timber framers have tried just about every finish available. Some have worked well and some have failed miserably. The challenges are:
1. To find a finish solution that is easy to apply, readily available and reasonably priced
2. Safe to the user – the environment – and the occupant
3. Durable and easy to repair
4. Yields the desired surface appearance and is long-lasting.
When building the timber frame home of your dreams, you're sure to be faced with many choices to make when it comes to the look and feel of your new home.The first decision you're going to have to make regarding the look of your finished timber frame is the texture of the timber surfaces. There are a lot of different ways to do this, so we'll go over a few of the most popular:
Topics: Home Planning
According to Nielsen's Demand Institute, more than 40% of Americans between the ages of 50 and 64 are planning to move within the next five years, and in many cases, these people are looking to move into a retirement home. This may include downsizing, or simply moving into a home that requires less upkeep overall, but in any case there are certain things to think about when designing your retirement home.This generation is becoming aware that by being more active in their retirement years and planning for one-level living, being near good services for social integration and healthcare all adds up to being happy overall. Here is a list of our favorites when we begin the design phase for a couple building their ‘final home–their dream home.’
With careful planning, your new timber frame home design will reflect the way you want to live. We’ve listed some areas below that will help you think through your “must-haves” as well as what you desire in a home.
Think about how you’d like the home to feel. Talk about your lifestyle, how you like to entertain and which rooms you spend the most time in. How do you want life to be different in your new home? Do you want to create an outdoor living space? Thoughtful planning in the design phase will result in a home that truly works for you.
Topics: Timber Frame Home
The thrill of finding that perfect house plan in a magazine or online is hard to beat. You love the exterior colors or the curb appeal, the window styles, and especially the floor plan. If only you could just change the size of those bedrooms for the kids or turn the kitchen the other way–then it would be just perfect!