Guide to Buying a Used Log Home

log cabin photo

Many persons have, in recent times, regretted ever purchasing used log homes. The reason is not far fetched; some persons discovered after a while that the house has defects.  Some have had to spend money to fix these defects. Even though Log cabins have peculiar problems, still there are general indicators that can tell you if the cabin will be a good buy or will develop problems in the long run.

It is recommended that you do the inspection with someone that is an expert in log homes and make sure that your eyes are wide open. Ask questions when you see something that isn’t clear to you, don’t assume.

Note also that while you are doing the inspection, you may discover some problems. Some of the issues may not have an immediate effect, but in the long run, they may need to be fixed. Hence, you may need to negotiate with the seller to reduce the cost base on the impending repair, or you can ask the seller to fix the issue before you purchase the house.

Below we will discuss the indicators you need to look at for while you going for the inspection.


If water should splash on wood with a good coat of stain, it will come together to form droplets, but if the coat used on the wood is whack, the stain will form a spot.

With physical observation, you can tell if it needs just a new coat i.e. if you observe that the stain is even but worn out. But if the wood has been up to 10-15years since it was last treated, then you will have to corn-blast before you re-coat. Though corn-blasting is expensive, you could try to negotiate with the seller.


It is a known fact that carpenter bees attack wood, especially exposed surfaces like along the roof edges and underneath the roof overhang. A well-treated wood will hardly have holes because carpenter bees don’t like stains.

While you are doing the inspection, there is a possibility that you will see holes here and there. But if the holes are much and about a half-inch diameter: that may be a sign of a problem. It is challenging to treat carpenter bees because they create long tunnels (which can be sometimes unreachable) inside the wood.

If you see a significant, irregular amount of wood missing on the log or fascia, this may be the handwork of woodpeckers. A wood fill may be the only solution to this as it is difficult to stop woodpeckers from re-visiting.


You can only find termites in log homes when the wood is damp and rotten. This usually happens when the wood has contact with the ground; that is why it is recommended that your foundation should be between 10-12 inches high. During your inspection, look out for piles of sawdust, as this may be a sign of possible infestation. So if the home you wish to purchase is infested, then be prepared to spend on the treatment.


Constant exposure to water is usually the cause of decay. This is very common with log homes built more than 20 years ago. The areas that will quickly show signs of rot are the logs at the bottom and around the corners, the window, and door frames. Also, remember to check if the gutters are working effectively. The possible solution for rotten logs will be a replacement.

Newsletter Signup

TruLog Product Catalog

TruLog Product Catalog

In our free catalog, you will learn about the benefits of TruLog’s™ Steel Siding