7 Tips When thinking about building a Barndominium: Where to start

Ok, so you’ve seen pictures of barndominiums online, perhaps even passed a few in the area, love the concept, and are thinking about building your own. Here are a few things to consider before you get started and begin working on a plan.

What would you do differently?

Barndominiums offer a lot of flexibility and give you options you may not currently have in your current home. Start off by writing down a list of things you don’t like about your current home. Then, list all the things you would do differently. We’ll want to discuss this list together.

Maybe it’s a bigger pantry so you can store all your small appliances in one area. Maybe you need a larger living room or want to do a fireplace feature wall. Perhaps it’s the lighting and you want more natural light in your living spaces? Higher ceilings are cool too.

Often, folks will want to customize their master suite or upgrade their kitchen. But beyond that, what would you do with a porch right outside either of those spaces? Do you like to grill but you’re tired of changing tanks all the time? Maybe a dedicated gas line to your grill or an outdoor stone grill with a charcoal option to make year-round grilling more accessible for you.

Do you have pets? Do you need anything specific for them such as a faucet for built-in water bowls or a pet shower? Perhaps an indoor-outdoor kennel?

Do you hunt? Do you need a space to process your game or refrigerate them?

These are all things to consider and more!

Oh, and did you know we can help you list your home for sale when it’s time?

Will your life look different in 5-7 years?

Here’s what we really mean: Do you plan to add to your family? Or, are kids moving out? You may consider building a slightly larger home if you plan to grow your family over the next few years. Remodeling or adding onto a house will be much more expensive in the future. Put some thought into your future before you come up with a plan.

What does your lot look like?

If you already have your lot, you probably have a good idea how big or small your house plan can be. A big mistake many people make however is not considering the “set-backs.” Set backs are city/county restrictions that regulate how close you can build to your property lines (front, back, or on the sides). These can be obtained from your local building department, or we can help you with those when it’s time.

Other things people tend to overlook are the topography and the soil conditions. Land topography is the slope condition. Is it a low-lying property that may have wetlands? Is it high ground? Is it all sloped at an angle that may require some leveling or a specific type of foundation?

Is the soil mostly sand or is there some clay mixed in? This will affect the septic system and well location for starters. Before we build, we’ll need to do some soil sampling to make determine what type of soil you have and how fit it is for building. This will alert us to how we approach the septic, well, foundation, and excavation work down the road.

Need land? We can help you with that!

What style of home do you love?

This is important and you don’t want to compromise if you can help it. Build what you love! We realize sometimes you have to compromise and settle for less than your dreams. But try your best to choose something as close to your dream home as you can. We’ll work with you to achieve something as close to it as possible. Sometimes we can build a slightly smaller house if it will help you build the style of home you love. There’s nothing worse than having regrets and wishing you had chosen a different option than you did. So don’t rush it. Let’s customize something that checks as many boxes on your list as possible.

One story or two?

Many families in our area love one-story homes in our area, but sometimes “going up” is less costly than “going out.”

Open floor plan or not

An open floor plan simply means there are less walls and more open spaces for your family to enjoy. Typically, barndos don’t have basements. If you go with an open floor plan, do you have another space somewhere to “get away” from each other when you need to? When we talk together, we can discuss options for creating additional living spaces for those introverts in your family to recharge!

Consider the outdoor living spaces

If you live in the Midwest, one of its natural blessings are the changing seasons. Whether it’s the colors and blooms in the spring or the changing leaves and cooler temperatures in the fall, the weather in our area changes a lot! We may complain about it from time to time, but many of us miss the changing seasons when we’re elsewhere. So the question is: how do we capitalize on this natural beauty for our home? How will we make the most of the seasons in our outdoor spaces? Is there anything special you can think of to add to your new home that would capture the elegance of our area?

Need more advice? Let’s talk. Connect with one of our builders for a free consultation today!