Build a tree house on stilts in a secluded location

Not every garden or plot of land offers a suitable place on trees to anchor a tree house. As an alternative, a construction can be built on stilts between trees and bushes, a clearing or in an open area. Since many structures look like trees, the stilt houses are often also called tree houses.

Stand alone or extended support

Anyone who wants a tree house in the garden does not always come across the potentially suitable and necessary trees. The age, the location and the growth cannot fit. To construct a tree house without a tree, a stilt house can be built.

  • Also read - Building a tree house to live in
  • Also read - Planning and building a tree house in the garden
  • Also read - Constructing a free-standing tree house without a tree

In addition to a free-standing secluded location, a tree house that can only be partially fastened can be additionally secured with stilts. For example, protruding balustrades and balcony-like platforms can be created that protrude far from the supporting tree. A relatively small enclosed space with a large open space can be interesting in order to dispense with the obligation to obtain a building permit.

Attachment to the ground

Smaller stilt houses are called playhouses. A tree house on stilts is used when the shape and height correspond to a house anchored to a tree. Two basic constructions are common:

  • Four vertical support beams or columns under the house platform
  • A thick central beam as a substitute for a trunk with star-shaped mounting brackets

In contrast to tree-mounted variants, stilt construction always requires a foundation. The load-bearing beams or pillars are anchored in point foundations in the ground. Since the ground is sealed, the requirements for building permits for a stilt house are different from those for a "floating " tree house.

Building physics and stability

Naturally, the load and the center of gravity of a tree house standing on stilts are at the upper end. Therefore, the following building physics laws and rules must be observed:

  • A high center of gravity develops additional stress energy when moving
  • Shifting of weight and uneven application of force generate tilting forces
  • Lateral tensile forces must be countered with cross and diagonal struts
  • Precipitation and wind exert additional stress (do not overlook the snow load)
  • Install the anti-rot protection especially on the ground contact
  • Use corrosion and rustproof screws
  • Use carpenter connections such as notches and tenons if possible

Pile construction and stilt construction

A tree house on stilts has an advantage that is often not considered. Since there is no direct contact with parts of plants and wood, infestation with insects, small animals such as rodents and pests is almost impossible.

A floor area is created under a stilt house, which is mostly shaded. This can lead to permanent moisture and wetness, which in the long term affects the strength of the floor. The reverse can also occur and permanent protection against precipitation leads to drying out. As a floor covering, gravel, mulch made from bark or sand are well suited to reduce this effect.

Tips & Tricks Carry out a thorough inspection of all components every year before using the stilt house for the first time. Rust and rotting occur in just one winter.