works with you every step of the way.
The Process in Phases
• The Design
• Determining Your Costs
• Scheduling and Shop Phase
• Raising Your Timber Frame
• Completing Your Home
started with your Timber Frame project
A successful building project is composed of well managed details. Here’s a good place to
start before you contact Homestead Timber Frames:
• You own your land
• You have a good idea of
your new home's size and style
• You have a realistic
• You have a reasonable target date for completion
• You have a 'short list'
of contractors to finish out your home OR
• You have chosen to be your own contractor
The first step in building a timber frame home is to choose a timber frame company.
We believe you make this decision based on three criteria:
offer excellent design services
2. They are professional in their services offered and skilled in their craft
3. Their personalities match yours which creates a sound working relationship
Now that you have taken care of
your initial planning, it's time to pay Homestead Timber Frames a visit. You
are welcome anytime but please call ahead so we can give you our undivided
attention. During your visit we will discuss timber choices and finishes,
building styles and techniques and discuss your timber frame project.
Once you are satisfied that we are a good fit with you and a
good choice for your project, we roll up our sleeves and take our first
official step together—that of designing your new home.
The Design Process ~
The Residential Architectural Design Package:
Our Residential Architectural Design Package provides you with an
in-depth look at your new Timber Frame Home. The Drawings are furnished in
1/4" scale and the Design Package includes:
Floor Plans -Two dimensional layout of all interior rooms, their
sizes and relationships, porches, decks, garage, and total square footage.
Four Elevations - Exterior views of your home with finish materials
and color combinations.
Timber Frame 3-D Schematic - A three dimensional timber frame drawing
displayed within your floor plan along with any exterior timber framing
Five Rounds of Revisions - You have the opportunity to examine each
phase of the design and make any changes you wish.
11’’ x 17” PDF of Plans - Completed plans are sent to you via email
in PDF format. These plans show all dimensions, rough window and door sizes,
exterior treatments, porches, decks, garages, etc. You may print as many of
these plans as you desire to gather cost estimates from Contractors.
Timber Frame Package Pricing and Structural Insulated Panel (SIP’s)
The Design Process:
The first design consultation with our designer is an in-depth conversation
in our office or on the telephone. At this first working session we discuss
your ideas, desires, and needs. We explore your budget expectations,
construction timing, style choices, and space requirements.
Together we fill out our Design Considerations Worksheet and discuss
your “shoebox” full of home ideas and photographs. We combine
the information you have shared with us with our notes to produce the first
renderings of your new home. We share these renderings with you—typically
via e-mail--for your comments and revision requests.
With each round of revised drawings the level of detailing is more developed
and a more in depth view of your timber frame home emerges. With your nod of
approval we complete your Residential Architectural Design and provide you
with cost information. This package and drawings are not intended to serve
as final construction drawings for your home. Your approved Residential
Architectural Design Package is used to provide you with Timber Frame and
Structural Insulated Panel pricing and for your use in obtaining finished
home pricing from your local Contractor. Detailed Construction Drawings
and Timber Frame Shop Drawings are included in your Timber
Frame Production Package.
Please request our Residential Architectural Design Package
Bulletin for more detailed information.
The Timber Frame Production Package:
Homestead Timber Frames prepares your Timber Frame Production Package
Quotation once you have approved your Architectural Design. Products
and Services included in your Timber Frame Quotation are:
Wooden Pegs and Installation Hardware
Timber Frame Shop Drawings Timber Frame Assembly
Your Timber Frame Crew
Travel, Meals, and Accommodations
Please request our Timber
Frame Production Package Bulletin for more detailed
Structural Insulated Panels:
Along with your Timber Frame Production Package Quotation is a quote from
our Structural Insulated Panel (SIP) manufacturer (if applicable).
You may desire SIP’s to enclose the entire home, roof panels only, or wall
panels only. The Structural Insulated Panels are a separate part of our
product offering. Our SIP’s give you an
R-24 in the walls with a 4” panel and an R-40 in the roof with
a 6 1/2” panel. You and your contractor should discuss the pros and cons of
using SIP’s. Once you are satisfied with your Architectural Design we send
your drawings to the SIP manufacturer and they very quickly provide you with
Please request our Planning for Structural Insulated Panels Bulletin for
more detailed information.
Once we have completed your Residential Architectural Design Package
together and you are comfortable with the quote for your Timber Frame
Production Package and SIP package costs, we prepare a Timber Frame
Production Package Contract for both parties to sign. This contract will
outline the scope of the work to be done in our shop, a payment
schedule, the owner's responsibilities to be accomplished before the
timber frame arrives at your site, and an estimated raising date. We
then prepare your Detailed Construction Drawings and Timber Frame
Detailed Construction Drawings are used by you and your
contractor to construct all of the conventional elements of your new
Detailed Construction Drawings include:
- Foundation Plan, Details, and Sections
- Floor Plans fully detailed and dimensioned
- Floor and Roof Framing Plans including sized load bearing members
- Dimensioned Elevations (Front, Left, Rear, and Right)
- Window and Door Schedules using brand and model information you supply
- 3-D Exterior Views from all perspectives
- Building Sections denoting wall heights, roof pitches, and building
- 3-D Timber Frame Drawings from all perspectives
Timber Frame Shop Drawings precisely detail all timber frame
assemblies in your timber frame home. Timber Frame Shop Drawings are
used by our timber frame craftsmen to build your timber frame in our
Timber Frame Shop Drawings include:
- All Timber Frame Assemblies with timber lengths, heights, and widths
- All individual timbers listed with nomenclature for accurate assembly
- Locations for any electrical boxes and chases installed in timbers
- Timber Frame joinery details showing mortise, tenon, and pegging
- Locations and art for any desired carvings and edge treatment on timbers
- Timber Finishing specifications
How to determine your costs ~
a full timber framed home package costs 15-25% more than a conventional
custom home of the same design. Costs vary depending on site conditions,
selection of doors and windows, amount of plumbing in the house,
exterior finishes and choice of roofing materials. Costs increase more
with longer driveways and utility access.
Timber frame joinery to accommodate complex designs are considerations
as well. All these issues should be discussed on the front end in order
to have a realistic dollar figure in establishing your budget.
Cost saving advice for your project.
Scheduling and Shop Phase ~
Once you have signed off on your Residential
Architectural Design and a Timber Frame Production Package
Agreement has been initiated, we allocate a time slot in our shop
schedule for your project. Homestead Timber Frames operates on a "first
deposit – first serve" basis. Your deposit allows you to reserve a
delivery date that accommodates your building schedule. Our production
of your construction plans and our shop schedules are synchronized to
meet your delivery date. Delivery of your timbers to our shop and the
shop joinery takes 3 to 12 weeks depending on the size of your project.
Delivery of the completed timber frame takes place when all is in
readiness on your site.
A Timber Frame
Ready Site has these characteristics:
1. Your home’s footings, foundation, and first floor system are in
2. You have ample space for timber delivery and staging.
3. You have scheduled for forklift rental and crane services.
4. You have electrical service and bathroom facilities on site.
Details on all specification and considerations are contained in your
Detailed Construction Drawings.
Raising Your Timber Frame ~
The most exciting day in the life of your
timber frame is Raising Day! You have anticipated this
day for months, possibly years. You have seen the vision
of your home take shape on paper; now on this day you
see that vision literally rise in the air and be secured
permanently with wooden pegs.
The timber frame crew will first assemble all building
sections (bents) and peg them together on your first
floor deck. Connecting timbers will be arranged in order
of installation. When all is in readiness the crane
operator will arrive on site and up she goes. Each
section is raised and secured, one section to the other.
All floor and roof members are "flown in" in turn until
the timber frame structure is complete.
A straight-forward timber frame composed of four bents
and three bays typically takes three to four days to
assemble and one day to raise. An additional day or two
is required to true the timber frame and peg all
At this time, the SIP’s should be on site and the
installation crew ready to apply the pre-cut panels onto
your frame. Average panel installation for a medium size
home takes 3-5 days.
Completing Your Home ~
Many timber frame home owners choose
to enclose their home with Structural Insulated Panels (SIP’s). This
makes for an extremely energy efficient home. Some SIP manufacturers
provide SIP’s with wiring chases and window openings already cut
before delivery to your site. The panels go on quick and within a
week your home is weathered in. We try to coordinate the delivery
and installation of SIP’s by the day after the frame is up. You may
install your windows and exterior doors during this process as well.
A general contractor is usually hired to oversee the foundation work
as well as finishing the home out after your timber frame is raised
and SIP’s (if applicable) are installed. While experience or
knowledge of timber framing is helpful, it is not necessary.
Homestead Timber Frames will be happy to meet with your contractor
at the beginning of the project and supply information needed to
make the work flow smoothly. Remember that construction details and
specifications are to be in compliance with the local building code.
We would recommend you ask your contractor at the beginning if they
are comfortable working with a timber frame company. Your
Detailed Construction Drawings will have all the necessary
specifications to complete the house just like any fine custom home.
If you desire timber framing to be used on the outside of your home
such as porch entrances or exterior gable trusses, etc. this may
require being installed on site as the home nears completion. Your
contractor may be able to do this or it may require Homestead Timber
Frames to come back after a period of time. All these decisions can
be made with your contractor during the initial meetings between
Some design alterations can be made to the timber frame while in the
shop to accommodate special considerations such as wood or stone
flooring, custom windows, and fireplaces or chimneys. Your
contractor and Homestead Timber Frames should collaborate to make
the project progress smoothly while under construction. It’s
important to save your dollars by creating these modifications on
paper in the design phase rather than finding out later that
expensive change orders are required to accommodate your taste.
If you desire to serve as your own contractor, we will work with you
to determine your goals. You may consider hiring sub-contractors for
specific jobs such as plumbing, wiring, or roofing. Many beautiful
homes have been built by their owners who are justly proud of the
accomplishment. Either choice requires patience, flexibility, and
An excellent book you may find helpful is Designing Your Dream
Home by Susan Lang (2008). This book goes into great detail in
covering the design stage, interviewing for contractors, and
choosing cabinetry, appliances, and hardware.
Please call or email for more detailed information on our
products and services.