So what is an A-frame? You’ve likely encountered an A-frame home at some point in your lifetime. They are known for their signature A-shaped look. They are aesthetically beautiful, and intriguingly designed and offer some of the most breathtaking views you can get in a home. High ceilings and many windows characterize the A-frame home’s unique place in the world of home building and home contractors.
But are A-frame homes right for you? There are many factors to consider including utility costs, maintenance, resale value and your personal preferences for furniture placement and home layout. At Nick’s Developments, we know everything about A-frame construction, design and maintenance, so our team put together this guide to help you decide if an A-frame is a way to go for your home buying or building journey.
Features of an A-Frame House
If you have A-frame houses in your area, you’ll know it instantly! They have a very distinct look with severely steeped roofs that usually begin at the ground and meet at the top at a tall point. A-frame homes have a number of windows, especially in the front of the home. This is to make up for the absence of the traditional four-wall layout and to let in as much natural light as possible.
Also, don’t be surprised if you see skylights. Inside the home, it’s a simple layout that is great for a single person or couple. And another bonus of an A-frame house, especially for Canadians, is that the snow doesn’t build up. The roof is so steep on either side that the snow just slides off!
Abundance of Natural Light
When it comes to window placement in A-frame homes, it’s common to see large windows in the back and the front of the home, and sometimes skylights, which covers the entire home in natural sunlight.
If you happen to be building a brand-new A-frame house, make sure to study the path of the sun throughout the year to maximize the amount of sunlight you can achieve in your home. All of this light will make your A-frame home seem larger than it is and give the feeling of airiness and wide open space.
Optimal Airflow is Tough
Although highly desirable for most homeowners, you might want to reconsider the open-concept layout of your home if you have an A-frame house with high ceilings. That’s because the upper level will be extremely warm in the summer and the main floor will be very chilly in the winter.
The only way to truly combat this ventilation issue is to have a fireplace on the main floor, as well as install ceiling fans for increased airflow. Radiant heat is another cost-effective option. Electric baseboard heating is another option that may work well.
With A-frames typically having so many windows, they tend to increase your overall heating costs. Glass windows can’t trap heat as efficiently. It will be important for you to inspect them annually to see if any seals need to be fixed.
If you have older, single-pane windows, you should strongly consider investing in double-pane or even triple-pane glass to maximize energy efficiency throughout your home. You’ll likely recoup some of the utility costs by having better windows while increasing the home’s resale value.
Another aspect of A-frame home maintenance to consider is that you have to take care of significantly more roof areas than you might with a traditional house. If you’re going to replace or fix asphalt shingles, it’s best to hire a professional to work on an A-frame with its dramatically slanted roofs.
That is why many A-frame owners opt for metal roof installation because of the minimal maintenance and 50-year warranty that comes with most metal roofs.
Potential for Resale
Plenty of natural light and impressive vaulted ceilings are the reason why a prospective buyer would likely be interested in an A-frame home. It’s a unique design that stands out. If you won an A-frame home you might even notice that passersby are stopping to take pictures of your humble abode. But note, A-frames are not for everyone, and anybody interested knows that you’re making a few sacrifices.
Also, it’s important to consider an a-frame house interior. That includes less space for furniture or hanging art on the walls because of the steeply sloped ceilings and minimal true vertical wall space.
There’s also less room for storage which is why you’ll rarely see a family with kids interested in buying an A-frame house. But with an increase of baby boomers looking to downsize, it may be the optimal property to put on the market right now.
You could attempt to reach out to some contractors in your neighbourhood who may be able to tell you about any potential demand for A-frame homes. A-frames also make desirable short-term rentals for quick visits to the town or city you live in. It could be an amazing income property if you decide to keep it after you buy a new home.
We’ve covered all the basics you need to know before buying or building an A-frame home. You know about the utility costs, maintenance issues, and the need to have top-of-the-line windows to maximize energy efficiency. But if you’re still not sure about this type of home, you can always reach out to NICKS Developments for advice from our experienced team of home contractors.
NICKS Developments is the Greater Toronto Area’s preferred home contractor for many different types of homes including A-frame homes. From simple remodeling jobs, to high-end renovations and full-fledged construction projects, our team of expert designers and builders will work with you from beginning to end as you create the home of your dreams. Our contractors are fully licensed, insured, and up-to-date on local building codes and regulations so you can rest easy knowing that you’re in the hands of a true professional.
Our all-inclusive home contracting services are at your disposal! Contact us today to book your consultation and to get an estimate.