4 Reasons Your Next Home Should Be A Pole Barn Home (with pictures to prove it!)
Building a brand new home is something many Americans dream of. After all, you can make it completely yours!
Roofing materials, bathroom paint, HVAC equipment, wall height, and much more are completely up to your choice. Pick what you like or what you’ve dreamed of for years!
Yet those who have tackled the task of building a new home could tell you that you will face a mountain of tough tasks as well:
- Finding a builder
- Constant tension between quality and affordability
- Permitting and paperwork
- Most of all: not breaking the bank!
But what if you could build a home that is affordable and doesn’t sacrifice a stitch on quality?
At K Graber Construction, we know of a building solution that meets those criteria, and we want to introduce it to you today!
Want to learn more? Let’s get started!
What Is A Pole Barn Home?
A pole barn home, or post-frame residential construction, is the way to build a house that is both affordable and high quality.
But what is a pole barn home?
If you’ve seen the large agricultural and industrial buildings dotted across the American countryside, you’ve likely seen a classic pole barn.
These pole barns were built by farmers and businessmen who needed more affordable ways to store equipment and other materials in the 1930s.
They are primarily set apart by two things:
- Pole barns are constructed using post-frame construction. Poles are either driven into the ground or secured above ground. The poles support the roof system, as opposed to traditional stud-wall homes where the walls support the roof.
- Pole barns don’t require a basement or foundation. When you do choose to use a foundation, they are extremely flexible in the types of foundation they can be built on.
In essence, pole barn homes are simply pole barns with more options for customization!
How do these two defining characteristics of pole barn homes benefit you? Let’s find out!
Reasons To Build A Pole Barn Home
There are a whole host of reasons to consider building a pole barn home. But, in this article, we’ll explore the most significant benefits of pole barn homes:
- Low Maintenance
Feel free to skip to the topic that interests you most or read through them step-by-step. Let’s dig in!
Pole Barn Homes Are Cost Effective
When it comes to cost, pole barn homes are more affordable than traditional, custom-built homes.
So what makes a pole barn home so affordable?
Let’s find out!
Remember - pole barn homes don’t always require a foundation. And they definitely don’t require a basement (though you can build a pole barn home over a basement if you want).
How does this affect the cost of pole barn homes?
In general, the cost of a basement ranges from $10,000 - $175,000. That’s quite a range in price, but even saving yourself the minimum of $10,000 is significant!
For example, here a few cool things you can buy with $10,000:
- 5 solar panels
- Tickets to the Olympics
- Tickets to fly around the world
Of course, wisely investing the extra money may not be a bad idea either. The point is, you’ll have extra money that you otherwise wouldn’t have had.
Fewer Construction Components
The amount of materials needed to construct a pole barn home is minuscule in comparison to what is needed for a custom house.
When building the floor of a traditional house, floor joists are installed 16 inches apart. Then, plywood or OSB is nailed down on top of these joists.
Walls are built on top of the floor with vertical joists again being spaced 16 inches apart. Generally, plywood or OSB is used to wrap the walls, which is then covered with a moisture protectant, and finished with windows and siding.
On the other hand, the main structural component in pole barn homes - poles - are generally spaced anywhere from 6-12 feet apart.
Purlins are installed horizontally on the poles, generally 24 inches apart.
As you can imagine - this is a drastic reduction in the amount of material needed to construct the home. In fact, the difference is clearly visible:
And that’s just one aspect of the home! Pole barns use significantly fewer construction components than traditional homes in almost every stage of construction.
With the price of construction materials spiking, this is more important than ever!
Pole barn homes go up in a flash. They are quick, easy, and intuitive to build. Alternatively, standard stick-framed homes can take quite a while to complete.
But let’s put some numbers to this:
- The average time to build a stick frame house beginning to end is 7.7 months.
- Building a pole barn home generally takes around 3.5 months
And, as the saying goes, “time is money.”
If you are building the home yourself, you want to get back to making a regular salary as quickly as possible. And if you are paying a local contractor, the price is bound to be cheaper if they spend less time at your property.
Long Term Savings
Have you ever bumped into a “too good to be true” deal?
You always look for the caveat, wondering when you’ll figure out the truth - perhaps the product is affordable because it’s cheap or needs to be repaired.
For pole barn homes, that is definitely not the case.
In fact, these simple, sturdy homes are generally more durable and maintenance-free than traditional homes!
Plus, they are more energy-efficient.
Add the durability and energy efficiency together, and you have yourself a home that saves you money year after year!
Pole Barn Homes Are Low Maintenance
As we just mentioned, pole barn homes are durable and low-maintenance homes.
But what makes them that way?
Poles Are Incredibly Strong
Poles that are planted in the ground are quite strong. In fact, a pole has twice the bending strength of a dimensioned piece of wood the same size.
Understanding how this works requires a quick science lesson!
As a tree grows, it prestresses its fibers. Wood on the outside of a tree trunk can achieve 2000 psi of tension. The inner wood is actually in compression.
The outer tension of the exterior wood is what allows a tree to bend substantially before it actually goes into compression.
A post, used in modern post-frame construction, acts in the same fashion when embedded in the ground. Forces of nature are transmitted into the ground enabling a very strong structure compared to other forms of construction.
Fewer Construction Components
Needing less material to build a home does more than save you money. It also decreases the amount of maintenance you need to do on your home.
When you reduce the amount of materials involved in a process, you also reduce the number of things that can go wrong.
It’s like using a normal wooden pencil in comparison to using a mechanical pencil. You don’t have to load the lead, the lead can’t break while coming out, and the mechanism can’t malfunction.
While the wooden pencil is simpler, it’s far more durable!
Quality Metal Is Used For Much Of The Construction
Metal is a star when it comes to construction.
Just one example of this is roofing materials: metal roofing is durable, lightweight, good for the environment, and relatively inexpensive. That’s why metal is a clear winner when it comes to metal roofing vs asphalt shingles.
Thankfully, a large portion of pole barn homes are constructed with high-quality metal.
That means you get the benefit of metal on more than just your roof!
(If you’re worried about choosing the right kind of metal, you might enjoy our blog on choosing the best metal materials for your home. Check it out!)
Easy Fixes To Maintenance Issues
Let’s face it - maintenance issues will crop up, no matter what kind of home you build. The key is to be able to fix the problem easily.
That’s good news for the pole barn home team.
Because these buildings are primarily built out of large sheets of metal, making fixes is easy. You can pop off a few screws, remove a metal panel, and have access to what you need.
On the other hand, traditional homes are often built with vinyl siding or asphalt shingles. While there’s nothing wrong with those products, removing them and reinstalling them is a difficult process!
Pole Barn Homes Are Efficient
Nothing takes the wind out of your sails like a high monthly utility bill.
So, if you’re building a new home, make sure to invest in a style that will be energy-efficient for many years.
It will save you money, and as a bonus, you can contribute positively to the environment by lowering your carbon footprint.
Thankfully, pole barn homes check the efficiency box as well.
Here’s how it works:
Pole barn homes have large wall cavities that are filled with insulation. This creates a more solid insulation wall with fewer breaks, resulting in better efficiency.
In fact, by using hybrid insulation packages and thin-film solar on your roof, you can have a Net Zero Energy home!
If you’re not sure what that means, here’s just a quick snapshot of the ways a net-zero home could help you:
- Zero carbon footprint
- Boost grid efficiency and stability (even for others)
- Reduced or no utility bill
- Increased resale value
Pole Barn Homes Have Custom Options
Everyone has priorities when it comes to a new home.
For some, cost is most important. For others, it might be efficiency or durability.
Those that care about beauty might be saying, “I don’t care how cheap or efficient a pole barn home is. I don’t want my home to look like a shed!”
If so, we get it!
But let us reassure you - pole barn homes don’t have to look like sheds! In fact, there are tons of options for customizing a pole barn home to make it a beautiful space that is completely unique to you.
Let’s take a look at how this can be done.
There are many things you can add to a pole barn home to make it beautiful.
- Custom stonework
- Stone-coated metal roofing
- Outdoor lighting
You can even make your pole barn home into an exquisite barndominium!
But as the saying goes, a picture is worth a thousand words. So don’t take our word for it. Check out these beautiful pole barn homes!
Open Floor Plans
Pole barn homes often have large, open floor plans. It’s like a clean slate, and you can draw whatever you want!
Maybe that’s why open floor plans have been the dominant architectural trend in new residential construction since about 1990.
And there’s plenty of other benefits that come with open floor plans as well:
- Better traffic flow
- Improved sociability and communication (especially important in the digital age!)
- Improved real estate value
- Easier to watch the kids
- Layout flexibility
- Multifunctional spaces
And if designing and decorating an open floor plan seems overwhelming to you, don’t worry! There are plenty of home design experts that can help, or you can try a few tips yourself:
- Give each zone distinctive qualities and define your space
- Use the same colors in different materials
- Consider the foot traffic
Either way, an open floor plan is extremely forgiving, and we’re confident you’ll love the results!
This point doesn’t relate to the pole barn home directly, but rather where the home is situated.
Sometimes the perfect spot on your home isn’t acceptable for building a traditional house because of foundation requirements.
However, with the foundation flexibility that pole barn homes have, they can pretty much be built anywhere.
That means you can have your dream home in your dream location!
You can have the home of dreams.
You can have:
- Low-maintenance features that make your home worry-free
- Efficiency that helps keep your heating and cooling bills low
- Plenty of exterior customization with colors and styles
And you can have it all without breaking the bank.
If you are interested in building a pole barn home, get in touch with us at K Graber Construction. We are a general contractor in North Central Indiana with more than 30 years of experience! We pride ourselves on our clear communication and completing your project exactly as promised.
And the best part?
Working with us is truly easy!
- Get a quote
- Approve the estimate and design
- Let us do your work
Contact us today and request a quote. We look forward to hearing from you!