When those of us with log or timber home aspirations begin looking for property, a site with a great view is the goal for most. This usually means a place on high ground, and often, sloped ground.
Whether your lot is atop a gently rolling hill or a steep mountainside, building on a slope presents both assets and potential liabilities. Thoughtful planning and an experienced architect will go a long way toward maximizing the potential of a sloped site.
The advantages of an incline site are many. In addition to providing the height that allows you to overlook your favorite lake, valley or mountain range, a sloped lot can offer the feeling of a remote location without requiring you to live miles from civilization. A slope also provides the perfect opportunity to build your log home on a walk-out basement, which helps maximize your square footage indoors and allows for multi-level outdoor living areas.
Potential drawbacks of a sloped site can be successfully overcome if considered early. Accessibility may be a concern – if there isn’t already a road leading to your site, can one be safely and affordably constructed? Assuming you can get to it, your sloped property may require more site prep and foundation work than a lot on level ground, which can add cost and time. It is also a good idea to check with your local utility companies – water, gas, sewer & electricity may need to be installed.
Whether you’ve already purchased a sloped site or are just considering one, review a topographical survey and walk the property with your architect. Once you’ve considered the contingencies presented by a sloped site, you can just relax and enjoy the view.