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My husband and I both dreamed of owning a log home one day. To us, the log home represented a return to the simple life -- a connection with nature and really just a lifestyle. After 4 years of dreaming, planning, attending log home shows, and cutting pictures out of log home magazines, we finally realized our dream of building a log home in northern Michigan.

We built a log cabin that is CLOSE to our dream log home, but a few things are lacking. Here are a few things that we would do differently if we were to build a log home again.

Here are some tips for staying organized and saving time when your log cabin is your home away from home.

Here I summarize our personal experience with log home financing, as well as provide information and tips that will hopefully help you finance your log home.

Your log walls will absorb 50% of the light in your log home, so you will need to be especially diligent in selecting and placing the lighting in your log home. Here are some great lighting ideas that won't break the bank but will light up and showcase the beauty of your log home!

Take it from us... prior to building a log home, it would be wise to have your contractor survey your lot ahead of time and remove any trees that could compromise your log home site. Several trees fell a little too close to our log home, and we were inches away from serious log home damage.

How often you need to stain your log home will depend on the color of stain you choose and how well you did the log staining prep work mentioned here. Lighter stains will need to be reapplied every 2-3 years. Darker stains can last 4-5 years. Here are more log home maintenance tips and things to watch for.

Need more space in your log home?... Consider a walk out basement! Here are some great reasons to consider building a log home with a basement, plus tips for building your basement while still staying within your log home budget.

Your log home is built, the weather is right, and now it's time for the exterior of your log home to be stained. For the record, they say that the best time to stain a log home is when the logs have a moisture content less than 19%. Here are the 4 necessary steps prior to staining a log home.

We fell in love with the log staircase that Hiawatha had in their model log home. It was comprised of half logs for steps and fit perfectly into the home's layout. It was something that we just 'had to have' in our log cabin. We researched the cost, and then compared the various log staircases that were available. Here's what we've learned about log stairs...