Folks have been asking about our northern Wisconsin cordwood home and how it has “held up” after nearly 50 years.  Here are some pictures, commentary, and a few links, should you care to dive deeper into cordwood. This is a 30′ x 40′, Post and Beam framed with locally sourced Northern White Cedar.

Flatau's Chateau for book CCBP with logoWe capped it with a truss room-in-the-attic (a Swiss Chalet style roof).  It gave us an additional 560 sq. ft. of living space (two large bedrooms and a half bath). OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Interior walls and ceilings are made from locally milled Norwegian Pine (also called Red Pine).   In a nutshell, our cordwood home is doing just fine.  The mortar is in good shape, there is no degradation of the wood and our home is cool in the summer and warm in the winter.  Who could ask for anything more?OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

At 720 pounds, the Hearthstone Wood Stove supplies all the heat we need.  Having a large thermal mass, a passive solar design and an attached solar/greenhouse room help to moderate the interior heating and cooling. Flatau's Chateau 1b.jpgThe photo above was taken when Mother Earth News sent a photographer from New York to document the Mortgage-Free Cordwood Article we had written in 1980. Flatau's Chateau 2005.jpg

The always-reliant 65-year-old Yellow Transparent apple tree provides fragrant blooms with every spring.   Note the solar thermal panels on the roof.

Truss room in the attic small pixels

Above is the Truss Room in the Attic truss that increased our home by 560  sq. ft.   It costs the same as a traditional roof. 

Flatau's chateau 2 interior with logo.jpg

The Home Comfort wood cookstove is used many times a year, but especially around the holidays.  Rich Becky and Summer with logo.jpg

Many articles have been published about our little cabin in the woods over the past five decades, here are links to the last and the first.

Mortgage Free Cordwood Home

Mother Earth News Magazine (first article)  

Should you wish to learn how to build a cordwood cottage, cabin or home, please visit   While you are there, click on the pictures, read the brief articles, check out the latest workshops and newsletter and if you are interested click on the ONLINE BOOKSTORE to see all the cordwood literature available in print and ebook format.

Cordwood Construction Best Practices Front_Cover_-_CC_Best_Practices small pixelsIf you have questions that aren’t answered on the website you can email me at  

Readers have requested a brief bio, so here goes:

Richard & Becky Flatau built their mortgage-free cordwood home in 1979 in Merrill, Wisconsin. Since then, they have written books, conducted workshops, facilitated the 2005,  2011, and 2015 Cordwood Conferences and provided consultation for cordwood builders.  Cordwood Workshop Video (DVD),  Cordwood Construction Best Practices (print & ebook), Cordwood House Plans, Cordwood Shed Plans and Cordwood Conference Papers 2015, 2018 Cordwood House Plans ($10) 16 sample floor plans) are the newest publications available from their online Cordwood bookstore.

Cordwood Workshop DVD 3

Click on the picture to be taken to the website for more information.  Check out the Photos, Video, and Blog Menu.