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Log Home Boom…in Russia?

I monitor stories about the log home industry daily and most of the news that floats across my monitor is what you would expect. Log homes for sale, solving maintenance problems, log cabins of a historical nature, etc., but rarely does a story jump out at me.

My focus is the log home business in the USA and Canada and I honestly know very little about the European or Russian log home industry.  Today I saw a story that made me sit up and pay attention and I thought I’d share it with you. On this side of the pond we’re dealing with a financial recession that has the entire home building industry struggling to remain afloat. Apparently, this is not the case in Russia.

In Russia, a log house is called an izba. What is amazing is that nearly 40 percent of single-family houses in Russia are being built of logs. The Association of Wood Housing recently reported that 7.3 million single-family wooden houses were built in Russia in 2010, a 25 percent increase over the last five years.
Read the entire story at The Moscow Times.

Log Home in Russia

This photo is from the story, and I would have to doubt that this is the ‘average’ log house being built in Russia, but like advertising on this shore, few manufacturers would showcase a mundane example of their handiwork. If you’re like me, this wasn’t what you were expecting from the Russian front.

3 comments to Log Home Boom…in Russia?

  • Its true. The reason is that hand-made or machine-milled log-house is considered as one of the most affordable way to build a house. The economy-class “shell” of a log-house may cost from 300 – 350 USD / cbm and up.

  • Tom, in Russia there are three main groups of solid wood home builders (in production sector):

    1) Private builders – groups of 2-3-4-5 people, who can make a wood log house directly at your construction site. You buy the logs and invite them to do the job. They are the most affordable, but you never now how qualified they are.

    1.1) Same as above, positioned as a constructing company. The log house is constructed at their own facility, usually situated close to raw material (= forest lands) area. They are more expensive, but you can check their qualification by visiting their construction-site and see how they work.

    2) Machined-rounded logs. Lots of different sized companies. Some of them have their own construction and design specialists.

    2.1) Sawn squared beam, usually 100 x 150 mm, 150 x 150 mm. Sometimes 150 x 200 or 200 x 200 mm. You can buy the squared beam yourself and invite some guys from group 1 to do the job, or you can order a prefabricated house.

    3) Glued beam. The fastest growing group. Usually prefabricated houses are offered, but you can also order glued beam as raw material, and invite someone to make a house. Problem is that some producers of glued beam use the cheapest low-quality glues and not well kiln-dried boards in order to make the their product cheaper, so one must be careful choosing the producer.

  • Tom

    Oleg,

    Thank you for the explanation of how the log home business in Russia works. It is quite similar to how our market is segmented with builders, manufacturers, etc.

    I find this very fascinating as I’ve had little exposure to your market. Please feel free to add your comments to this blog at any time so that we can learn more about your market and home building methods. We are always interested in new ideas.

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