|This post is brought to you by the 2016 GMC Sierra. Through precision, great trucks and great men are made. THIS IS THE PRECISION OF PROFESSIONAL GRADE. Whatâ€™s this?|
Somewhere along the way, society got it into our heads that treehouses were mainly intended for kids.
Then, thanks to people like Pete Nelson of Animal Planetâ€™s Treehouse Masters, everyone started to realize…well, thatâ€™s just absurd.
And since Pete owns a premium treehouse building company, has his own television show, and has been constructing houses in trees since he was eight years old, we figured heâ€™d be a great person to talk to about the do’s and donâ€™ts of making a high-quality, branch-supported abode to call your own.
Without further ado: Peteâ€™s pointers on how to build a treehouse for the ages.
Do: Go a little crazy with your deck.
Pete Says: Ample deck space with comfortable seating is the one luxury everyone should have.
We Say: You should always trust a man whose lifelong career inspiration grew from flipping through an illustrated copy of Swiss Family Robinson as a youngster.
Donâ€™t: Ignore your climate.
Pete Says: Every region can be a treehouse region. But itâ€™s important to pick the right wood for the job and do a thorough survey of the land/conditions before starting. For example: account for floor insulation if youâ€™re somewhere cold.
We Say: If you can visualize it, you can build it.
Do: Carefully consider how you transport your materials.
Pete Says: Get yourself a versatile truck. Our 2500 GMC Sierra, â€œScratch,â€ is a fully loaded, long-bed crew cab with a heavy-duty custom wood rack. It can handle anything.
We Say: Power is important, but so is technology. Take the 2017 GMC Sierra. It has advanced features like a built-in 4G wi-fi hotspot (helpful when you want to stay connected while on the job site) and a wireless center console charging station (to keep your phone powered up while you work).
Donâ€™t: Build your house lower than 8Â feet or higher than 18 feet.
Pete Says: This allows for simpler, safer construction. IÂ also strongly advise anchoring the base of your rope ladder.
We Say: Good call on incorporating a rope ladder.
Do: Treat your treehouse like a treehome.
Pete Says: Enjoy the finished product. Kick your feet up and relax in your treehouse. Maybe a read a book, like, say, The Baron in the Trees by Italo Calvino.
We Say: Make your treehouse feel lived-in. Adding well-appointed features like a desk, a music player and bookshelves makes a big difference.
Donâ€™t: Forget to allow for flexibility.
Pete Says: That is the most common mistake for treehouse builders, especially when building in multiple trees (speaking of trees, heâ€™s partial to Douglas firs).
We Say: Maybe use a pencil to draw up your blueprint, and donâ€™t get too attached to that â€œgold-plated elevatorâ€ idea.
Do: Work with a purpose.
Pete Says: A lot of the treehouses we build have themes that relate to the clientsâ€™ passions, be it sailing, or exploring, or a specific architecture that they love.
We Say: Treehouses make a great anniversary gift. Just find your inspiration and follow it.
Donâ€™t: Ignore the big picture.
Pete Says: I built my first treehouse with my dad when I was eight in a maple tree in the front yard of the New Jersey home I grew up in. Itâ€™s an experience Iâ€™ll always remember.
We Say: This isnâ€™t just a regular project. Itâ€™s a bonding experience.