Frequently Asked Questions

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Q: Are architect and design services available?
A: We can work with the customer's ideas and design their home. The cost of architect-drawn plans, if needed, are not included in our price and would have to be acquired and paid for by the customer. There is an architect in this area that we can work with as needed.

Q: Can I put up a Koski Log Home myself?
A: Due to the large size of the logs, we send a full crew to re-erect the home on the customer's foundation. We use a crane to put them up. An average rectangle home is put up on your foundation in one day. The customer can help in some ways during this process.

Q: What about basements and basement materials?
A: We do not put basements in. Recommendations for basements are as follows: Minimum of 10" block (necessary because of weight of a log home), poured concrete, or a pressure-treated wood foundation.

Q: What are your business hours?
A: Please call to set up an appointment as we do not have set hours. We can set up times on weekends as well as weekdays.

Q: How do you care for your logs?
A: After purchasing logs cut only in late fall to early spring, and receiving the logs at our log site, we remove the bark using a peeler or bark spud. We then apply a fungicide to the logs. They are then stacked properly and covered with a special tarp to keep them out of the rain while still allowing air circulation to dry the logs. The logs are stored this way for 1 to 3 years. When the logs will be used, they are then peeled with planers and draw knives for a smooth finish. Also, once a home has been built in our log yard, it is covered with special tarps to keep out the elements, protecting the wood until it is time to move it to the customer's property. We pride ourselves in the extra care given to our logs to ensure their original beauty.

Q: Do you have any dealers of Koski Log Homes?
A: We do not have any dealers. We are the only location for Koski Log Homes, here in Ontonagon, Michigan.

Q: How is the electrical work done?
A: Electrical boxes are put in the base logs. The wires are run from box to box in the floor joists. Wires for light switches are run in the door splines. All overhead wiring comes down the door spline.

Q: Are the energy codes met?
A: Yes, we far exceed the energy codes.

Q: Do you have standard kits for your floor plans?
A: We are custom builders, therefore the floor plans that we have are a just a sampling of what we have built. You are not limited to using just these plans. We can work with you in designing a plan to suit your needs or we can work from a floor plan of your choosing from another company. The largest rectangle we build is 32' x 44'. If you want a larger home there would have to be jogs in the log walls - more corners - as we do not do butt joints (see Styles of Log Building).

Q: Is there financing available?
A: Customers will have to get their own financing. However, we will work with the customers to set up a payment schedule that will best suit their needs. We are usually quite flexible on this.

Q: Do you use insulation between the logs?
A: We use the new wool batt on the market right now, which is made specifically for this application.

Q: Are the logs green or dry for building?
A: You can build with "green" logs as long as you allow enough settling over windows and doors. We do have an inventory of dry logs also.

Q: What log species and sizes do you use?
A: We build with red and/or white pine in sizes ranging from 12" to 36" in diameter, customer's choice of log species and log size.

Q: With the abundance of cedar in the U.P., why do you choose pine over cedar for construction?
A: The cedar in the U.P. has too much taper to it when building with full length logs. We can get Western Red Cedar if the customer would like it instead of pine.

Q: Where can I get log stairs, railings and half-log siding?
A: We can provide all of these.

Q: How large is your market area?
A: Our market area is the mainland 48 states only.

Q: Do you have any model homes?
A: We use our own home as a model here in Ontonagon. Customers can also see homes in progress in our log yard as well as some homes we have built in this area.

Q: How is the plumbing done?
A: Plumbing is put in the interior stud walls.

Q: What is the price of your homes?
A: We are often asked for a square footage price. We give a very ballpark square footage price and explain that we do not actually price our homes that way but know they want some idea of cost. We price according to the floor plan, such as window and door openings, number of corners the home has, diameter of the logs, and the home's location. We do request a $1,000 payment to hold your slot, which is usually non-refundable if you cancel. It is applied toward the contract price of your home if you do not cancel.

Q: How is your pricing compared to other companies?
A: Another question we are asked is how our homes compare to other companies' prices, such as milled homes, timber frame homes and regular homes. First of all, that is comparing apples to oranges, not apples to apples. These are totally different products. Second, there are also so many companies out there with so many different price ranges that it would be very difficult to do a cost comparison. Customers should find products they like, then go to those companies for individual pricing. There are just too many variables. As far as comparing prices with other handcrafters, we know what we have to charge for our homes due to overheads unique to our company. Other handcrafters have their certain overheads unique to their company. Therefore, prices will vary. Also customers need to compare more than prices. Two other very important considerations: they need to compare quality of the products and they need to have confidence in the builder they choose for future, as well as present, needs.

Q: What is the R-Value of your logs?
A: The R-Value is 20-30 depending on the size of logs used.

Q: What is the Roof system R-Value?
A: We build a double-insulated roof system using both styrofoam and fiberglass insulation. This system has an R-Value of 42 +. We do the roof system up to, but not including, shingles.

Q: What is the lead time for scheduling a home to be built?
A: There is no specific lead time as it goes according to openings we have in our schedule. As far as how long it takes to build a home, a simple, rectangular log home can take four weeks to build while a large, complex home can take three months.

Q: Can you do a second story with logs?
A: We can build a second story but it would be much less expensive to have a loft instead with a higher pitch roof.

Q: How do you secure your logs to one another?
A: We use ash pegs and through bolts to secure logs.

Q: What are the stages of completion by Koski Log Homes?
A: We can do the complete log shell, log rafters/trusses, cut window and door openings, and do the roof system up to, but not including, the shingles. We can do any phase of this that the customer wants. We have done the roof system on about 99 percent of our homes.

Q: What is your style of log building?
A: We build using the handcrafted Scandinavian full-scribe method with the scarf notch, and using full length logs only, no butt joints (logs are not butted up to one another end to end.)

Q: How is the weather insulation?
A: Excellent in heat or cold with the large diameter logs we use.

Q: What type of weather resistance?
A: The homes need large eaves on the roof and a good wood finish. We recommend Sikkens wood finish.

Q: What wood finish would you recommend?
A: We recommend Sikkens wood finish inside and out on the logs. We have tested many products and found Sikkens to be the best. On the outside, it needs to be applied every four to five years. For your convnience, we are also a dealer of Sikkens wood finish.

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