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Services :: Design Approach :: Designing your log or
timber frame home

At CedarCoast we understand that designing a log or timber frame home is more than just picking a floor plan from a house plan book. Custom designed homes. The phrase can strike fear in the hearts of a lot of people. It seems so intimidating. "What do I know about design?" "Don't I just hire a design expert to do it for me?" "What if I don't like it?"

Your choices are personal: they reflect you, your view of the world, your tastes and styles. Sometimes the design choices can seem overwhelming. That's why we've developed SmartPlan™, a tool that we use to carefully guide you through the design process so that you will be confident with, and comfortable in, the choices you make. You are an integral part of the design process.

Our approach to home design  

Creating the perfect home for you and your family involves a professional approach to design. Design is much more than just a good floor plan. Proper design involves addressing four distinct points.

1) Property Features

Hillside log homefor example:  

  • sun exposure
  • important views from the home, such as a lake
  • privacy issues
  • prevailing wind direction
  • topography of building site
  • driveway location
  • septic, water source and out-building locations

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2) Architectural Elements 

log home with gables and porchConsider the “look” that appeals to you. The first impression of your home is important. The things you need to include:

  • desired overall style - ranch, two-storey, A-frame, etc.
  • steep or low pitched roof lines, dormers, roof overhangs
  • curb appeal
  • porches
  • window designs
  • millwork details

Plan books, magazines and design books are a great help when making these choices.

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3) The Interior Space

Consider the general layout of rooms, the size of the rooms and the factors that affect these decisions. Compile a list of what rooms you want such as the number of bedrooms, bathrooms, etc. Would you like an office, den, media room, hobby room, formal dining or living rooms?

Window wall in timber frame homeConsider the following:

  • Do you entertain casually or formally?
  • Do you like to eat on the porch in the summer months?
  • Where will your quiet space be? 
  • Where will tasks such as doing laundry, household paperwork and potting plants be performed?
  • How will you incorporate outdoor activities and living spaces? Will a screened porch, covered porch, deck(s), patio, gazebo or hot tub be required?
  • How will you incorporate your favourite furniture pieces and artwork into your new home?
  • How will you contain noise, to and from rooms, such as an office or baby's room?
  • Views to the outdoors from any given room
  • Indoor and outdoor lighting 
  • Traffic flow inside your home

The overall feel of the interior of your finished home is one of the most important considerations. Many homes built today lack “cozy” spaces. Consider that an open concept “great room” can be too open or too high and therefore lack feeling, intimacy and comfort. However, the interior finishing can greatly affect the overall feel of your home. Let us help you visualize and understand the space that you will call home.

Some of the answers to the above questions may be affected by your lifestyle, such as whether this will be a home or cottage, whether you have children and whether you may retire to this home.

The decisions above will affect the “presence” that your home will have from the outside, as well as the comfort level and function inside. We suggest that you start a scrapbook where you note design ideas that you may see in other homes and keep photographs and designs that you come across. Our design team will review your scrapbook with you and identify common themes that will be used to design your perfect home. At CedarCoast Timber Homes, all design work, as well as full blueprints, are included in the price of your home.

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4) Budget

Every design decision made will affect your budget. It is very important to design a home within a given budget that you are comfortable with. The shell of your home is only part of the overall budget consideration. Interior finishing choices will have an enormous impact on the final cost of your home. We can help you budget items to finish the home itself as well as unforeseen items and contingencies.

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Putting It All Together

Working together with our staff and drafting department, we will analyze the information gleaned from the design process above and integrate it into a preliminary design plan.  

At this point, our clients will have an appreciation and a clear vision of what their home will look like and feel like. Good design not only defines items like the rooms and the window locations, but it allows our customers to truly understand the atmosphere that their new home will provide and the feeling of the space that they are about to create.

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Your own design book - the first step

It's never to early in the process to start thinking about design. Make your own design book. Paste in pictures of houses that appeal to you. Look for interesting architectural features, window shapes that you love, dream kitchens, luxurious bathrooms, tranquil bedrooms, spacious decks and balconies, anything that you like. Jot down questions and ides as they occur to you. You're on your way to designing your home.

With your input we design your log or timber frame house from the ground up. You may be surprised at some of the questions we ask. You will be thrilled with the result, the home of your dreams. The home you've always wanted.

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Log and timber commercial buildings

We take the same approach to designing commercial buildings that we take to designing residential log and timber frame buildings. Whether you're thinking about building a lodge, a resort, a clubhouse, or professional offices, we make sure that the result is a design you love that respects your desires and is within your budget.

Contact us to find out more about designing a log or timber frame building that meets your needs, matches your vision, reflects your values, and brings your dream home to life.

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Log and timber frame home design and building services

A log or timber frame home design that reflects your tastes, requirements, and budget, is only the initial stage of CedarCoast's service

Architecture and Design

view through window of timber frameYour choices are personal. They reflect your view of the world, your tastes and style. However, many people are initially overwhelmed by this design opportunity.

CedarCoast Timber Homes has professional design staff as well as a full-time engineer on staff. We have the capability to design your house from scratch, providing several plan revisions and fully engineered blueprints. We have a wealth of experience in designing country homes, lake-side cottages, retreats and recreational-commercial applications.

Our clients have come to us, in part, because they are frustrated with trying to find that “perfect plan” by searching the plethora of plan books available. Although you may find some good ideas within some of these plans, you will never find the perfect plan. Choosing a stock plan usually means compromising right from the start. 

Our experience has shown that the custom design of Timber frame Post and Beam and Log homes is lifestyle-specific and site-specific.  As such our design process with you includes the following stages: 

  • We will guide you through the design process laid out above and assist you in writing your “Top 10 List” of priorities
  • We will produce a preliminary draft design of your home that is compatible with your tastes, needs, lifestyle, site and budget. Many of our clients utilize our own recommended architects who have experience in the field of timber construction. If you have your own architect, we will work closely with your architectural firm in this process.
  • We will produce a detailed materials package quote for your house.
  • We will visit your site to study the views, surroundings, topography, etc. so that we can determine what impact these factors have on your project and make recommendations.
  • We will then revise your plans, based on the site visit and further discussions with you. This plan revision will address more detailed questions, mainly regarding the inside of your home, such as your furniture layout, lighting plan, detailed window design and sizing, kitchen and bath layouts, etc.
  • The next step is to involve your builder. If you don't already have a builder, we'll help you find one. We will produce a few copies of the plans for your builder so that we can discuss the blueprints in detail and allow your builder to take them to the building department for review.
  • Often, several plan revisions will be done before the final copy is ready. We will work tirelessly through this process until the plans are perfect. There is no charge for design revisions.  

As well as helping you understand our approach to design we've provided a resource page to help you research information about building a log or timber home.   There are links to web sites with design information and a list of books and magazines that are helpful when you're designing your own home.  Sometime the jargon can be a bit tricky so we've provided a glossary of terms used in building log and timber homes.  And, of course, an FAQ page to answer those questions that we often get asked.

Engineering and Blueprints

Our drawings for your new home will be the most detailed available in the industry. They typically include full exterior and interior trim detail as well as design details for your home's mechanical components.

Sometimes, during the engineering phase, an aspect of the design (such as ceiling height or window design) is affected by structural requirements. We explain any structural impact on the original design and do our best to preserve the overall integrity of the initial design by discussing possible alternatives.

Healthy Home, Healthy Environment - a home designed with the future in mind.

From energy efficiency to interior air quality, CedarCoast considers a wide range of factors when we recommend products and systems that will enhance your family's health and comfort. Products and designs that will lessen your home's impact on the overall environment are researched, and included where it's appropriate.  We're committed to environmental conservation and a "green construction" approach to building.

Proven Construction Materials Packages

CedarCoast's Materials Packages add up to a complete building system. You don't have to guess at anything or wonder if something is missing. We provide a clear explanation of the material quality and components on a category by category basis. Your material package is designed specifically for you. Everything you need is included, there are no unexplained extra's to worry about.

Project Management and Construction

As well as designing and manufacturing your custom log or timber frame home, CedarCoast can provide weather-tight erection or turnkey construction management services. Effective communications, a disciplined time schedule, and a tightly controlled budget are the key factors in effective construction project management.

Please contact us for answers to your questions about our log and timber home services.  Whether you're building a small getaway cottage or a mansion we will work to ensure that your home reflects your lifestyle, tastes, desires, and individuality.

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1-800-563-5647    Tel: 705-689-8413    Fax: 705-689-8414    info@cedarcoasthomes.com

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