Why Barndominiums Are All the Rave

Why Barndominiums Are All the Rave

Architecture
Additions and Remodels
By Mateos Glen Hayes April 30, 2021

10 Reasons Why You Should Hop on the Barn Wagon

There was once a time when it looked as though the future of housing would be dominated by grey obelisks of bare concrete reinforced by cold steel. Thankfully, recent decades have shown that housing can come in all shapes, colors, and sizes. Today, the prospective homeowner has a big range of homes to choose from such as four-room apartments, condos, or even townhouses. Many new homes are springing up in serene woodlands far from the cacophony of frenzied urban centers. As part of this growing trend of suburban-rural living, one type of rustic-style home that is quickly gaining popularity is the barndominium

If you’re wondering “what is a barndominium?” let’s start by breaking it down: it’s a combination of the words “barn” and “condominium”, and as the name suggests, it is a home that has been built into an existing barn or is custom-built. For those that long to build a house perched on serene farmlands far removed from the city, the barndominium offers a solution that combines the comforts of modern living with a rustic aesthetic. German Low houses were the “original” barndominiums and were brick buildings with thatched roofs used to house both animals and humans.

Today’s barndominiums are drastically more fabulous. They are usually made from steel beams or solid timber, and sheet metal siding. While they can be built with a more traditional purpose, it’s clear that the rising demand for barndominiums is coming from people who want to create beautiful country-style homes for themselves. They usually come with large windows, high ceilings, and lots of space. There are many benefits of choosing a barndominium as your country house, whether it’s actually in the countryside or suburbia. Here are just a few. 

Lots of Design Options

Houses You Wouldn't Believe Are Barns

Houses You Wouldn't Believe Are Barns

The barndominium is a great fit for many people. This is because it gives you a lot of different options when it comes to how you want your country house to look, and makes it easy to have a home with a barn-like exterior and a rustic feel. You can give your new abode a Texas cowboy ranch-style feel, or a classic New England barn-style aesthetic. If you’re not a fan of the barn look, you can easily build your barndominium to have a sleek modernist style. The barndominium design is flexible enough to fit all sorts of preferences and can come in all shapes and sizes.  

Barn Style Interiors that Will Make You Drool

Barn Style Interiors that Will Make You Drool

The interior of a barndominium is also a blank canvas that is just itching to be designed. When you have a blank slate as the customization of a barndominium allows, you can fluidly achieve looks that say: rustic farmhouse, new era country, contemporary traditional, boho industrial, and more. 

Flexible Layouts 

The benefits of barndominium design don’t end with the outside. The barndominium also gives plenty of choices for interior layouts. You can easily set it up as a work/living space, ideal for those who work from home. The flexibility of layout options also gives you the luxury of having separate zones for different activities. If you change your mind, and come up with better barndominium ideas, or if you feel your barndominium’s interior has become outdated, the spacious nature of your barn-style home makes remodeling a breeze. 

Barndominiums - If You Could Have It All

Barndominiums - If You Could Have It All

Open Concept Floor Plan

Thanks to its size, the barndominium is the perfect home for an open concept floorplan, which allows for an airy living space rather than one segmented into smaller rooms. If you forgo putting in a second floor in your barndominium, you’ll be rewarded with a beautiful vaulted ceiling. Few home styles can give you such an immense feeling of spaciousness as barndominiums can.

The Perks of Living in a Barndominium

The Perks of Living in a Barndominium

It’s Cheaper Than Building a Home 

Homes You Wouldn't Believe Are Actually Barns

Homes You Wouldn't Believe Are Actually Barns

Cost is another significant pro of opting for a barndominium over other home options. When comparing the average square foot price for a barndominium to the square foot price of building a traditional home, the barndominium usually comes out on top as the most budget-friendly option. A Barndominium can be as much as 50% cheaper to build than a comparable building made of traditional materials. On top of that, a barndominium may even take 50% less time to build than your average home. However, if you choose to build your very own ranch-style barndominium, you should be mindful of taxation. 

While the cost of a barndominium tends to be lower, your barndo can be something of a grey area for your local tax assessor. Your assessor may count unheated footage with heated footage, or they might exclude unheated footage. An assessor might even compare your house to a traditional house with similar square footage. So it’s worth consulting your local government to find out where your barndominium stands on property taxes. If in doubt, consult a contractor. Licensed contractors should be able to help you navigate the local tax laws in your area so that you can avoid unpleasant surprises. 

You Can Buy a Barndominium Kit

A barndominium building kit helps to take away a lot of the guesswork when it comes to building your ranch-style home. Barndominium kits come in a variety of floor plans, sizes, colors, and with a huge variety of different configurations and finishes. These kits are usually sold by steel construction companies, and their contractors will go through the details of your kit to make sure that everything is tailored to your liking. Another big benefit of these kits is that they usually cost a lot less than an already built barndominium. The average cost for a kit is around $50,000, with more expensive kits going for $90,000. Depending on the size of the kit you buy, your steel contractor may leave assembly up to you, or they might help you to put a more complex barndominium together. 

Lots of Room for Work and Play

What Barndominiums Can Offer Your

What Barndominiums Can Offer Your

The immense open space of the barndominium means that there are so many opportunities to build fun spaces and workplaces. The cavernous interior of a barndominium can be filled with dining halls, dance halls, high-end kitchens, game rooms, private studies, and all sorts of little nooks and crannies where you can escape the hubbub. The barndominium truly offers you the best of both worlds, with enough room for recreation and your work life, and is great as a family home.  

They’re More Durable Against the Elements

The Benefits of Building A Barndo

The Benefits of Building A Barndo

If you dream of living the barndo life in the wilderness of the countryside, you’ll be happy to know that the barndominium is especially good at standing up against the elements. Thanks to their steel cladding and steel structure, these structures can literally last a lifetime without needing any major maintenance work. A barndominium is much stronger and lighter than most homes. Because of this, it is less likely to get water damage or have foundation trouble. This protects it against unwanted visitors such as burglars and pests and makes barndominiums less maintenance-heavy than a typical home.

A barndominium is also better at withstanding disaster. Unlike wooden structures, the steel beams of a barndominium are much better at coping with fire, and can remain standing in winds of up to 150 mph without getting damaged, That's great news if you plan to build your barndominium in tornado alley. If you do decide to build in tornado country, you’ll probably notice that your neighbors already have steel frames in their houses for this very reason. 

A Barndominium will even keep you safe from lightning. If it is struck by lightning, your barndominium’s metal structure will act like a Faraday cage, shielding you from the lightning and keeping your electronics from frying. Barndominiums are also more likely to survive an earthquake thanks to their structural integrity.   

Country Home Dreams 

Realize Your Country Home Dreams Without Going to the Country

Realize Your Country Home Dreams Without Going to the Country

As our cities and our suburbs become louder and more crowded, the allure of the countryside retreat has only grown amongst city dwellers. Barndominiums make great suburban homes, but building one in the rural hinterland also comes with many benefits. The air is cleaner, there's less noise, and there's less to get stressed out about. To top it off living costs are usually low, and there’s often less crime. As we go about our busy urban lives, we often aren’t afforded much privacy or personal space, but the countryside has plenty of both. A country barndominium is like a home away from home, comfortably removed from the hustle and bustle but not without the modern conveniences we’ve all grown to expect. 

More Energy Efficient

Yet another benefit of steel structures is that they tend to be more energy-efficient than your average home. Metal buildings are easier to keep cool. Painted metal roofs can reflect as much as 70% of the sun’s rays, and their insulation keeps heat from transferring from the outside of the house into the inside. During the winter, a barndominium’s large windows can be used for passive solar heating, where the heat of the sun is absorbed by a concrete floor through windows.

Written by
Mateos Glen Hayes

Written by Mateos Glen Hayes