There is a simple method log home owners can try to assess their building and their need for a restoration expert, says Matt Edmunds of Edmunds and Company Log Home Restorations.

Take a small hammer, he says, and place one hand on a log that you know is good. With the hammer, tap the log about six inches away from where you’ve placed your hand. “See what that feels like and sounds like,” he says. “That gives you a baseline as to what your good logs sound like.”

Next, he says, go to a log that you’re sure is decaying and do the same thing to get a baseline for what a rotten log sounds and feels like. Finally, go around to the places where you aren’t sure and sound out those logs. “That allows you to determine approximately how many rotten logs you have,” Edmunds says, and will help with getting a complete cost estimate.