Given the rise of the farmhouse aesthetic in recent years, it comes as no surprise that people have gone all-in on barndominiums. As made famous in recent years by Joanna Gaines, barndominiums are refurbished (or newly built) barns that serve as a condo, home, or otherwise usable living space.If you’ve wondered about creating your own barndominium—either through refurbishing or construction—read on for everything experts want you to know before you go full barn.




Barndominiums Can Be Cost-Effective

“A barndominium or metal barn home can be significantly less expensive to build than a regular home, especially given the high price of lumber right now,” explains Carson.

“[As of December 2021], a barndominium tends to cost an average of $30 to $40 per square foot for basic assembly, while a traditional house costs closer to $100 to $200 per square foot. Since they’re made of metal, they are also safer than wood homes when it comes to fire risk.”

While the structure itself might be more cost-effective, Carson also says it’s important to keep in mind the costs related to building on land. “Clearing land can cost between $1,300 and $4,300, including excavating and grading,” she says. Other additional costs include a new foundation, plumbing, electricity, and a sewage or septic system.


A Plan Is a Good Alternative to a Kit

If you’re building your barndominium from scratch, “before getting started, think about whether you want to build from a plan or a kit,” says Carson.

“Plans cost an average of $500 to $2,000-plus, while hiring an architect to design a metal home will cost more along the lines of $2,000 to $9,000-plus. One thing to keep in mind with plans is that most manufacturers will only sell them to you if you intend to buy a kit as well.”

From there, the total cost will depend on the square footage, style, layout, and amenities of your barndominium.