Education& Resources helping homeowners and builders make informed choices about Building homes that last

Our ultimate goal is to create a community of builders and homeowners who are dedicated to improving the quality of life in their neighborhoods and communities.

Education& Resources helping homeowners and builders make informed choices about Building homes that last

Our ultimate goal is to create a community of builders and homeowners who are dedicated to improving the quality of life in their neighborhoods and communities.

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How Much Does It Cost To Build A Barndominium

May 13, 20243 min read

Hey everyone, TJ here from Sanctified Homes and Construction. Today, we're diving into a hot topic in the home building community: the cost of building a barndominium versus a traditional house. There’s a lot of buzz around barndominiums, often seen as a cost-effective alternative to traditional homes. However, the truth is, the cost can vary widely based on a multitude of factors.

Understanding Barndominium Costs

What Is a Barndominium?

First, let's clarify what a barndominium really is. At its core, a true barndominium is built like a steel building, with wide spacing (about 8 feet on center) and often without a basement. It’s designed to offer a vast amount of space with a simple structure, which can indeed be cost-effective.

Misconceptions and Realities

Many people start with the idea of a barndominium thinking it will automatically be cheaper. However, once features like basements, intricate heating systems, and high-end finishes come into play, the costs can align closely with, or even exceed, those of a traditional stick-built home.

For example, if you’re adding a massive garage or fancy custom features like heated floors or expansive concrete work, the price will rise significantly. The structural costs might be lower initially, but the interior and finish work can push the overall budget much higher.

Key Cost Factors

Structure and Design

  • Basic Barndominium: If sticking to a basic design with minimal customization and without a basement, costs can be lower per square foot compared to traditional homes.

  • Custom Barndominium: Incorporating custom designs, a basement, or luxury finishes will increase costs, potentially matching or surpassing those of a conventional home.

Material and Labor

  • Steel vs. Wood: The choice between steel (common in barndominiums) and wood (typical in traditional homes) can affect the cost, with steel often being cheaper for the frame but possibly more expensive when considering insulation and interior finishes.

  • Labor Costs: Depending on your location and the complexity of the design, labor costs can vary significantly.

Location and Foundation

  • Land and Preparation: The cost of land and the necessary site preparations can impact your overall budget. Areas requiring extensive groundwork for a stable foundation can lead to higher costs.

  • Foundation Type: Choosing to add a basement or specialized foundation like a slab with radiant heating will also affect the total price.

Financing Tips

When approaching banks for financing, it’s crucial to describe your project in terms familiar to them. Labeling a project as a barndominium might be confusing due to unfamiliarity with the term. Instead, presenting it as a custom home project can facilitate a smoother financing process.

Planning Your Build

If you’re considering building a barndominium, start by clearly defining what you want and understand that every choice you make—from the size of the building to the interior finishes—will influence the cost. Working with a transparent builder who uses a cost-plus pricing model can help you see where your money is going and make informed decisions about what is worth including.

For those of you pondering a barndominium or any large building project, check out our resources on effective budgeting and planning for your new home. Remember, building a home is a significant investment, and understanding the cost implications of your choices is crucial.

Don’t forget, whether it’s a barndominium or a traditional home, raising your standard in building is key to achieving the home of your dreams. Stay informed, ask the right questions, and choose a builder who aligns with your vision and budget. We're here to help at Sanctified Homes and Construction. Thanks for tuning in, and as always, don’t forget to raise your standard! We’ll talk to you soon.

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TJ Vitense

Founder of Sanctified Homes and Construction & the Blessed to Build Foundation, TJ believes in raising the industry standards. With his company Strategic Real Estate Experts, he helped hundreds of families buy and sell homes. And, now manages new home construction as one of Wisconsin's best home builders.

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