Advantages of Prefabricated Cabin Homes

Standard log cabins are homes where all of the parts needed to construct the cabin are brought to the site where the house will be built and constructed piece-by-piece around a wooden frame or in a “lincoln log” style construction method.

Prefabricated cabins like those we provide are considered stick-built homes with log or other types of siding built off-site in a climate-controlled facility and then delivered in modules with specialized equipment to your site.

There are numerous benefits associated with building prefab cabins over site-built homes. Read below on some of them and what makes our stick-built homes a good option for someone looking to get a new home. 

The Cost of Building Prefab Log Cabins Is more cost-effective

One of the primary considerations when building a home is the cost for some people. Many factors impact the investment to build your dream cabin, including the design, the materials used, number of bathrooms, size of the kitchen, the quality level of the systems in the home like HVAC, plumbing, electrical, and the level of craftsmanship, warranties, etc.

An advantage of building in a climate and quality controlled environment vs at the install site will result in a better product for the customer and a more efficient process for everyone. It also avoids innumerable subs working on your site making a mess, the risk of weather and other delays.

Traditional log cabins have no framing and depend on the structural integrity of one piece of wood to protect you from the elements. As large round trees become more costly to source, a stick-built option like Ulrich provides you with a more consistent build and is significantly more cost-effective over the long term.

They Take Less Time to Construct

Construction times with site-built homes are subject to potential construction delays due to various reasons. Projects can often take significantly longer to complete than the original estimated timeline leading to cost overruns and, most importantly, frustrations. 

Even in the best of times, constructing a site-built cabin can take upwards of a year, while our unique process allows them to be completed in most cases only a quarter of that time. 

Prefab log cabins or, in our case, a stick-built style home built off-site are typically finished and ready to be sent to build sites within a matter of months. Once delivered, they require minimal to no time to install, except a larger two modular unit. Total time including decks and electrical and plumbing hookups for one of our homes, is a few days, depending on the size and specs of the cabin.

Unlike site-built homes, you could have a fully functioning prefabricated log cabin home within only a few months of your purchase. You get the advantage of a stick-built home quality but do not have to worry about delays due to weather, sourcing, etc. 

Greater Design Flexibility

While not exclusive to prefabricated housing, one benefit of building a prefab cabin home is the buyer’s amount of control over the design and layout of their cabin. A customer can decide whether they want a traditional look or a modern farmhouse as an example.

The number of floors, bedrooms, bathrooms, closets, and every other detail of prefabricated cabin homes is discussed ahead of time and customized to fit the buyer’s wants, needs, dreams, and budget.

Prefab housing eliminates the possibility of surprise manufacturing costs along the way; our designers walk customers through the entire process, and before anything has been built, they know exactly what they are getting.

More Stability Than Traditional Log Cabins

Although it may seem counterintuitive, prefab log cabin homes are significantly more stable. This is due to two main factors: they don’t rely on one piece of wood from cracking or splitting to protect the inside from the elements, and they have framing construction, making it much stronger. Because of the manufacturing process, prefab cabin homes eliminate much of the cons of traditional log cabins.

Additionally, to withstand the process of being transported from their manufacturing facility to the building site, they require a higher level of durability than site-built log cabins and face more frequent quality testing along the way.

Prefab Log Cabins Don't Need to Settle

Standard log cabins typically need to settle, which refers to the amount that the walls of the house (the logs themselves) will shrink over time. This process can take up to five years, with most settling occurring in the first two years. By the time the process is complete, a standard cabin wall can have a height reduction of up to six inches.

Settling occurs in response to the logs tamping down over time and an overall loss in moisture. Logs eventually reach Equilibrium Moisture Content (EMC), the equivalent level of humidity in the home’s air, at which point the house is settled.

When a house settles, adverse effects such as the inability to open windows or doors can occur, which can cause problems for homeowners. To avoid this, construction companies sometimes leave space for homes to settle, causing draftiness. However, prefab cabin homes avoid settling by attaching log siding to a solid framework and center beam, meaning the cabin’s structural integrity remains intact. 

They Don't Crack as Much

In addition to avoiding settling to increase the overall instability of the home, prefabricated log cabin homes are less prone to cracking than site-built cabins.

The cracking of logs occurs as a part of the process of reaching EMC. It is most common when a home is built with logs with a moisture content higher than 19%. However, most prefab log cabin companies use “dry logs,” meaning their moisture content already falls below 19%, making them at a significantly lower risk for cracking once installed.

You Get Better Protection From the Elements

From the time they are constructed, prefabricated cabins are better protected from the weather. Unlike site-built cabins, all the pieces that go into the house are produced within a facility, transported to the building site, and then installed quickly.

The controlled production of materials and construction means there is a lower likelihood of delays in construction due to weather, and the pieces of the cabin themselves spend almost no time outdoors before the home is installed.

Additionally, prefabricated log cabin homes offer the aesthetic appeal of a traditional log cabin with today’s architecture’s durability and structural integrity. Our cabin homes are built using “D” shaped logs with shiplap technology.

The shiplap technology design orients the outside of logs to be curved, flattens them on the inside walls, and fits them snugly together to help seal the wood and keep out any cold weather. 

Furthermore, because all of the logs are milled in a manufacturing facility, the wood’s quality and consistency ensure an ideal fit that is much harder to obtain with an on-site build.

Prefab Log Cabins Are Environmentally-Friendly

Prefabricated cabins are ideal when considering the environmental impact of building a new home. Most importantly, prefab log cabin homes are made primarily using wood, a renewable resource.

Wood is the least environmentally impactful resource to produce for house manufacturing, and unlike other resources, it can completely replace itself within its ecological environment.

There is also less waste associated with the building of prefabricated cabin homes. While site-building requires materials to be delivered directly to a building site and modified on location, the in-facility manufacturing associated with our stick-built construction process ensures significantly less waste and emissions associated with each build.

Furthermore, the precision obtained with milled wood ensures that more warm air is kept in and cold air is kept out, meaning less energy is used to heat the house long-term.

Conclusion

Prefabricated log cabin homes are an excellent choice if you’re considering building a new home in the country or somewhere outside of the city. They offer numerous benefits over site-built log cabins, including their stability, durability, environmental impact, and on-site waste reduction.

Ulrich’s non-traditional Prefab log cabin homes blend the best of both worlds. You get a stick-built home in a quality and environmentally controlled environment makes it an excellent choice for someone who does not have the time or patience to deal with a site-built home that needs the quality that comes with that.

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