Building Tree Houses
Nothing brings you back to nature and delights the child inside like tree houses!
When we think about tree houses, we think about our childhood, camping, nature or maybe something a little more esoteric? So you’ve got the perfect tree on your property and you’ve been toying with the idea of building tree houses for months (maybe years!). Now is the time to get to it!
In fact, the longer you wait, the older your kids get. The older you get and the less able you are to build a tree house. So the time is now. It’s time to put up your legendary tree house. Or maybe you have plans to build tree houses in a bunch of trees and tie them all together with rope bridges and zip lines!
There is nothing stopping you from putting your dreams in motion.
Getting Started Building Tree Houses
OK, so there actually might be a bunch of things preventing you from building tree houses. Let’s examine them:
No one said tree houses need to be built with brand new supplies or even paid for supplies. In fact, the only thing you should actually pay for is the wood to make your flooring. It’s probably a good idea that the floor be level and flat, but even then you can use salvaged wood from demolition projects. You can get windows cheap from home salvage stores (or don’t put any windows in at all!).
Check Craigslist in the FREE section to see if anyone has leftover building supplies that they need hauled off. I promise if you make it a habit to check at least every other day, you will find some free wood for building tree houses. Don’t let your budget stop you from making your tree house!
No time to build tree houses:
No one said you have to take a week off of work to build your tree house! Take a weekend to climb up into your tree and visualize what your tree house will look like. Bring a tape measure up there with you and get a rough estimate on what it will look like. Sketch up some ideas and then go through this website and look at some pictures of tree houses for inspiration.
Over the next week, when you’re taking a break, doodle out your designs over and over until you have a great idea on how to move forward.
The next big step is to buy or find your building materials. You will need a few beams at first to get your floor platform started. Once you have the wood to get started building tree houses, the rest is a snap. You don’t even need to buy everything to complete your project. Just get enough to build the tree house floor for now.
The next weekend you’ve got free, it’s time to put up your floor supports and if you have time, finish off the flooring. Once the floor is in, the rest is a cake walk! You can build your tree houses, one wall at a time on the ground and then hoist them up and attach them to the tree houses.
This process might take several weekends to accomplish. It might take several months. The only really pressing matter is to get the floor on and secured properly in case any kids decide to play on it while under construction or any weather tests the strength of your workmanship.
No Tree House Designs
This is where you’re in luck! You can download tree house designs from a respected tree house builder and adapt that to your specific tree. No matter how elaborate you plan to go with your tree houses, having a solid foundation of building tree houses can be scaled up to any size as long as you attach to the tree or ground properly.
You are also encouraged to think outside the box when working on your tree house designs. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with putting a square shack up in a tree, but when building tree houses, you have a lot of leeway to make it special. Think about all of the features you would like to see in your tree house. How will people get in and out of it? Will there be many ways in and out of your tree house? How many stories will you put on it? What about a “crows nest” near the top of the tree? How about multi-level tree houses built at the height of each supporting branch?
When you’re in the design phase of making your tree house, let your imagination run wild. You can always scale it down to fit your budget. Or since you might be building it over time, you might be able to build all over your dream designs as more money comes in.
No Suitable Trees for Building Tree Houses
Unless you are a total purist, your tree houses don’t need to be supported by your tree. As long as you integrate your tree into the design, you will still have something great. In fact, if you are no using the tree to hold up tree houses, you get rid of all of the major problems that come with preventing damage to your tree houses. Connect it solidly to the ground and you never have to worry about your tree breaking or dying and ruining all of your hard work.
Dreaming of Tree Houses
Stop dreaming and start designing! That very first step is often the hardest, but it doesn’t have to be as long as you make your tree house in baby steps. Pretty soon, who knows? You may be sending in your tree house pictures and videos to show us how it’s done! Find some inspiration to get started on your own tree house project today.