1st Choice Oak Log Homes
Paul & Jackie Horst
739 Westerfield, Hebron, IN  46341
P. 219-746-6472
c. 2009 1st Choice Oak Log Homes  All rights reserved.
The Process:  How to get the home of your dreams.
1. Define your goals. What are the primary goals that this home must fulfill? In other words, Why are you building
this home; what must this home accomplish to be of value to you and your family?

2. Visualize your lifestyle. What activities should this home be built around? Don't just look at pictures of what
you want the house to look like, get a clear mental picture of yourself engaged in the activities that you want this
home to accommodate. Let's design the home around your lifestyle, not the other way around.

3. Plan your investment. Your 1st Choice Oak Log Home is certain to appreciate in value over time, doubtless
more rapidly than conventional homes. Still, as with any project, you must be comfortable with the amount you
invest in you home.  Establishing a budget early on that we can work with is important. We will help you complete a
brief, one-page feasibility study that we'll use to establish size, style, amenities and a completed target cost.

4. Land. If you don't already have a building site, this is the time to obtain land. It’s never too early to start
gathering ideas, but you should obtain land before you finalize a set of plans, as the home must fit the building
site.  A site survey and percolation test and/or soil evaluation test may be required to obtain septic and building

5. Assemble your ideas. Based on what you want to do in the house - how you defined your lifestyle above, we
now start putting form to the function.  What have you seen that you liked - photos, plans, design ideas, etc?  We'll
start a scrap book of ideas that we'll use to get a clearer picture of what this home should include to complement
your personality.  Looking at the many plans available from
Gastineau Log Homes can be a big help here, as they
offer many innovative ideas.

6. Preliminary Design.  We'll use your ideas and direction to develop a personalized floor plan that matches your
lifestyle and activities.  As that develops, our designers will start adding the architectural details you want. Be
prepared: This is that stage where unlimited imagination meets finite budget, so compromises generally need to be
made. But, don't panic; we'll help make sure that everything you truly want in your home is included... without
breaking the budget!  A design deposit, depending upon the size and scope of your project, will be required get
this phase started.

7. Preliminary construction pricing.  Once we have a set of preliminary plans that define the major elements of
the home, you're ready to begin assembling bids and pricing for materials and construction.  Based on interviews,
experience and prices, you'll choose the final building team that will make your new home a reality.  

8. Final design and pricing.  Now is the time for any tweaking or last minute changes.  Once the plans are
finalized, firm construction bids and pricing are obtained and construction agreements are ready to be signed.

9. Financing.  If the home will be financed, we'll submit the plans and bids to one or more lenders.  The bank or
mortgage company will hire an appraisal, which will give them an idea of what the home, finished and including
property, will be worth on the retail market.  That figure will be used to determine your mortgage loan amount.  A
construction loan will then be issued which will convert to the permanent mortgage when the home is completed.

10. Order Gastineau Oak Log Home package.  A deposit will be due which will be covered by a draw from the
construction loan.  A flow chart is created for work to be performed and subcontractors and materials deliveries are

11. Permits.  Final plans and engineering details, along with required soil tests, will be submitted by the builder to
obtain all necessary permits.  Once building permits are issued, applications will be sent to the utility companies,
and you’re ready to begin site preparation.

12. Site work begins.  Clearing the lot, putting in the driveway, installing temporary electric hook-up, staking out
the exact location for the home, and digging the footings or basement are completed.  The well and septic system,
if applicable, are installed.

13. Structural Framing.  The foundation (slab, crawl space or basement) is installed, and the structural materials
for the home – floors, walls, roof, windows and doors – are installed.  Porches, decks, garages and carports may
be installed at this time.

14. Mechanicals.  Electrical wiring, plumbing, heating and air conditioning, and structured wiring (cable,
telephone, computers, etc.) are installed. The fireplace and chimney, patios, and any exterior concrete work are
constructed or installed.

15. Wall covering, exterior trim.  Here’s where you home really begins to take shape inside.  Wall covering (dry
wall and/or wood paneling, depending upon your choices) is installed and readied for paint and stain.  Outside,
porches, decks, fascias and trim are completed.  Finish grading is performed at this time, either seed or sod for the
lawn is put down, and landscaping is installed.  Exterior stains and coatings are installed, and the outside of your
home is finished.

16. Interior trim.  Back inside, the trim and interior doors are installed and painting and staining is completed.  
Cabinets are measured for final fitting and counter tops are ordered.  Finished flooring and tile are installed, as are
cabinets and vanities and stairways.

17. Fixtures.  Plumbing and lighting fixtures are installed at this phase, and water and HVAC are on and operable.  
Your home is almost finished.

18. Final details.  The final driveway materials are installed and the landscaping is finished outside.  Inside,
window and door hardware, closet shelving and appliances are installed and working.  The cleaning crew comes in
to make sure you home is pristine and ready to move into, and you and your builder do one final walk-through to
make sure there are no items left undone.  

19. Occupancy permit.  The final step is your occupancy permit which allows you to take possession of the
home.  You’re now officially ready to move into your beautiful new oak log home.

20. You’re all moved in, sitting in the great room in front of a crackling fire in the stone fireplace amazed that you’
ve finally arrived – you’re enjoying the warm sensation of the realization of a what for some is a lifelong dream,
secure in the knowledge that this is only the beginning – you’ve got plenty more memories to make!

Every worthwhile journey begins by taking the first small step.  Contact us today to begin your journey. The sooner
you start, the sooner your
1st Choice Oak Log Home dream will be ready to welcome you home.
Planning and building a new home, camp or retreat should be an
exciting time - an opportunity to create something that will hold
intrinsic value for your family.  Understanding how the process
works can go a long way toward making this a positive and
enjoyable experience.  Below is an outline of steps that will lead,
one by one, to the realization of your beautiful new oak log home:
Download this page as a PDF.
Your 1st Choice for the home of your dreams.