Going Green

Green construction is becoming more and more popular. If your goal is to save energy, create a healthy home environment, be it Eco-friendly or all of the above, here is a  guide to your Green design and building options to meet your individual requirements.

By selecting a log or timber frame home you are already on the path to Green building. Footprints engineered log or timber frame home already uses timbers from renewable sources with our manufacturer using trees from sustainably managed forests. However, Green design building has many more facets than just the logs. Here are some of the elements we use when working with our clients to develop a Green building agenda.

Green Building Goals.We’ll work with you to help define your Green building goals and offer recommendations from home design to material selections and more, while keeping your budget in mind.

Design with Green Building in mind. It all starts with the design of your custom home. Incorporating your Green goals into your custom floor plan, we’ll offer recommendations for site placement, window size and location, HVAC options, ceiling heights, lighting and much more.

Site Planning. We’ll offer ideas to help you to create a design that not only takes advantage of your site but keeps the surrounding environment in mind through a detailed site plan.

Develop an Energy Efficient Plan. We’ll suggest options to help you create an energy efficient custom home, from positioning your home to take advantage of passive solar, working with your mechanical contractor to select an energy efficient HVAC system to selecting ENERGY STAR appliances. We’ll help you design and energy efficiency plans that fits. We will work with you and your builder to review Eco-friendly building materials, choices, building waste disposal methods, lighting systems, indoor quality, water efficiency and much more.

Geothermal is the most energy and environmentally friendly system available today. This heating and cooling system uses the relatively constant temperature of the earth to maintain an even temperature in the home, winter or summer

In Floor Radiant heat generates an even heat throughout the home and will not distribute dust like forced air thereby creating a more healthy environment.

Cozy Cabin in Idaho

The Sportsman is a log cabin that makes the most of available space. At 840 sq. ft., this cabin floor plan incorporates a separate bedroom and full bath. The cleverly designed kitchen includes bar seating, plus a separate dining area. The second story loft can be used for many different purposes — from relaxing to socializing to providing additional sleeping space.

The logs for this cabin were erected in less than 2 days. Our ‘Country Cut’ milled log is fully pre-cut and pre-drilled for electrical and the electric boxes cut in which means a lot less work on the job site when erecting the logs.

This cabin was customized slightly from the Sportsman Cabin and once finished will provide many years of happy memories for the homeowner and family. Dog Kennels ‘aka Dog Lodge’ are behind the house with a horse coral scheduled for later on.



The house has our round/round log giving profile both inside and out but still using our double tongue and groove locking system. Corners are the standard saddle notch.

You and Your Budget

Who does not have a budget when it comes to building your dream log home?

Here are 10 handy tips to help you save money!

  1. Building up instead of out reduces cost of concrete on a large foundation.
  2. Keep roof lines simple.. fancy roofs cost money!
  3. Keep corners to a minimum.. Corners are costly to construct.
  4. Add a ‘Shed Dormer’ in the loft to gain more headroom thereby creating more usable square footage.
  5. Consider a log burning stove instead of a fireplace, the stove is more energy efficient.
  6. Consider the positioning of your home to take advantage of the sun in winter when the sun is lower in the sky.
  7. Use a laminate counter top instead of granite, carpet and tile instead of wood, stainless steel appliances will add a big cost to your budget and these are things that can be upgraded later.
  8. Milled double tongue and groove logs are more budget friendly than Handcrafted, timber Frame Swedish Cope or Post and Beam.
  9. Double Hung windows are more cost effective than Casement (wind out) windows.
  10. And lastly, your Sweat Equity is where you can really save the $$ – anything you can do be it laying tiles, painting, staining the logs etc. will reduce your overall costs.

Difference between a Timber Frame, Post and Beam or a Hybrid home

Timber Framing is the ancient art of framing where skilled craftsmen joined timbers by: Mortise – a wooden hole  and Tenon – a wooden peg. Nowadays nails screws and bolts are used.

Post and Beam is similar in design configuration to Timber Frame, this construction system uses metal fasteners between timbers which can include plates, screws and through bolts.

A Hybrid design which is becoming more and more popular is a combination of conventional construction be it Log, Timber Frame or Post and Beam using accents of Timber or Post and Beam. Timbers are typically used in the Great Room, entry and Kitchen/Dining areas and log posts used on decks a porches for a more rustic appearance.

Trusses are the focal point of the design in Timber homes. They are what draws our attention upwards when we enter these majestic spaces. The Truss is not merely decorative, it can also be structural to  carry the weight of the second floor or roof support system to the walls without any support from below. Trusses and their individual components go by dozens of names and configurations.