About Building a House in a Forest

A very small model of a simple house made out of wood sitting on a forest floor amidst the moss and ferns.

Proponents of forest bathing know that a walk in the forest can make you feel really alive, so wouldn't living there be even better? (Image: Romolo Tavani via Dreamstime)

For many, living in the concrete landscape of the cities becomes tiring and so they seek refuge in nature from time to time. A vacation in a forest region can be truly refreshing. However, true nature lovers are going beyond that and making plans to build homes in natural settings. While living in such a region may seem daunting for most people, it is not exactly impossible. There are many tribes who have lived amidst wooded areas since ancient ages. With careful planning and assistance from ace home builders, setting up such a home is possible.

There are many benefits of living in a home situated adjacent to a forest. To begin with, you get fresh, unpolluted air to breathe. The freedom from noise and clutter of urban life is bliss. Those with respiratory issues will face reduced complications by living in such places. Living amidst unpolluted greenery also helps in boosting mood.

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Aerial view of wooden cottage in green pine forest by the blue lake in rural Finland in summer.
There are many benefits of living in a home situated adjacent to a forest. (Image: Kondratova via Dreamstime)

Even ace architects vouch for the inherent benefits of building a house inside a forest and living in such places. Johan Sundberg, a noted Malmö-based architect, says: “In Sweden, we have trees everywhere, and I am convinced of the benefits of living among them. Biologists and doctors will tell you that this is the environment we are adapted to. It’s as much about the undergrowth as the trees and what that contributes to the atmosphere. We often meet clients who would like to preserve all the trees, but they also want a big house with lots of terraces, and the architect’s challenge is to try and find a middle ground.”

Architects like Sundberg admit there are some challenges to building single-family homes amidst forests. He says while speaking on the hurdles: “We have had issues with heat-protecting glass, which can remove a lot of the natural light you might expect to filter through. It can also distort colors. It’s one reason we like to visit a site at different times of the year to observe any changing conditions that might exist.”

Tips for building a forest house

Whether you make a small tree house for spending vacations or want a wooden home set up inside a thick forest, these tips will come in handy to minimize woes.

First of all, you have to look at the legal issues. In some wooded areas, there may be protected species of plants or animals and you may not be allowed to build.

Eurasian lynx standing on a moss-covered stone in a forested area.
You may not be allowed to build in some forests due to the presence of endangered species. (Image: Ondřej Prosický via Dreamstime)

It may be necessary to cut down some trees. However, you will have to remember that the forest is, after all, an ecosystem of interlinked elements. Keeping trees on the northern side will offer protection from harsh, chilling winter winds.

Try to build your house in such a way that it lets in sunlight as much as possible. This will help you cut down on emissions.

One big hurdle in building a home inside a forest is durability. It will be exposed to harsh winds, rain, and snowfall. So, using insect-resistant wood to make doors and windows is a prudent idea. You may also use shatter-proof and hardened glass in windows to get better protection from wild animals.

When you live amidst nature, certainly you would not want to pollute the surrounding environment and impact the wildlife adversely. So these homes should be equipped with eco-friendly equipment and power sources. Using solar panels on the rooftop may be a good idea and you could also use solar energy-driven home appliances.

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