Timber Frame vs Stick Frame Homes

  • Guest Blog
  • 4 years ago

When building from the ground up and wanting a wood style home, people are torn between two popular styles, either a stick frame or timber frame home. Both styles have their advantages and disadvantages, and we recognize the importance of building your dream home. Here we highlight the pros and cons of each style home to ensure that your decision will be a knowledgeable one.

Stick Frame Home

Recognized as the most popular form of construction in the United States, stick frame construction is a building method where workers assemble the skeleton of a home from the ground up, stick by stick.


  • Being the most common style of home, stick frame homes are a cheaper option and finding a contractor to do the job is easier since most companies usually specialize in this building style.
  • Stick framing is adaptable when trying to incorporate any kind of shaped window or door within a home.
  • Alterations to the home mid-construction because more sticks can always be cut and fit appropriately to the current standing of the home.
  • Being the most popular style home, there are no odd engineering or code approvals needed.


  • The process of stick framing is longer than most because it requires several steps and requires that all work must be done on-site and is dictated by the weather. Measuring, cutting, fitting, and nailing each stick is a time-consuming task, and many mistakes are going to be made, regardless of the skill level of a contractor.
  • Due to the thickness of the walls, stick frame homes are also harder to insulate and seal
  • Because of a poorly insulated and sealed home, the home will become more susceptible to insect infestation, rotting wood, and moisture problems.

Timber Frame Homes

Compared to stick frame homes, timber frame style homes are a new concept and are assembled by using mortise and Tenon joints, being secured by wooden pegs.


  • Due to their sturdiness, timber frame homes are held up entirely by the timber that is used to construct them leaving the interiors to be very open and spacious, not blocked by any support beams.
  • Incorporated in the timber beams are SIPs, or structural insulated panels, which provide extra, light weight, easy insulation.
  • Compared to other building material, timber is a lightweight material that is easy to carry and handle. In addition, because the material is built through a mortise and Tenon method, material can be pre-cut, which helps expedite the building process.
  • The aesthetic quality for timber frame homes are second to none. With naturally distressed wood, these homes give you the feel of a truly original and unique feel that do not need any sort of extra finish.


  • Homes built out of wood are susceptible to pests such as termites, woodworms, wood ants, and the like.
  • Wood naturally absorbs water, which may play a part in either the shrinking or swelling of wood.
  • The biggest concern, compared to other homes, is the cost of a timber frame home. Yes, these houses will be built with exceptional quality, however do not expect to be pinching pennies when opting for this kind of service.

This post was contributed by Andrew Aurigema, a specialist at woodhouse timber frame homes who’s passionate about the artistry of building high-end timber homes.