A barndominium, or barndo, is a relatively new term for the housing industry. The term was first coined in 2016, and originally referred to a steel barn building, with interior renovations to create living space. The term now includes either a wood or steel framed “utility structure” that has been converted into living space.
Hence it looks like a barn on the outside, but the interior is finished like a condominium, complete with bathrooms, kitchens, bedrooms, and other living spaces.
The term really took off, after the HGTV show “Fixer Upper” converted a barn, sitting on a 10-acre parcel, into an absolutely stunning dream home for one of their clients.
Since the showed aired, the barndominium craze has been spreading like wildfire towards the west coast, and with good reason(s), too!
When you step inside of a barn, what do you see?
Aside from the columns and beams that support the building, there’s not much else to see inside of a barn.
There may be a small upper level for some storage space, otherwise you can look up to see the underside of the roof and see all the way across the space to the opposing wall.
Nothing to see here but a truly open concept floorplan, ready to become your forever dream home.
With steel barndominiums available to purchase in a kit form, all you need to do is determine the size that you want or need.
After that make a few choices regarding door and window locations, and your done.
The manufacturer will assemble all of the components necessary to complete the shell of your new steel barndominium.
When the kit arrives, it will include every nut, bolt, bracket, and attaching plate needed.
All of the steel columns, roof beams, and sub-purlins are there, and everything is marked or numbered. You or your contractor, simply follow the detailed assembly instructions, and your barndominium will be ready in no time.
Slide open the barn door to bring the outdoors, inside.
One of the best benefits of a barndominium is just how easy it is to bring the outdoors in, or to extend your living space outside.
Simply slide open the barn door and your guests can easily step out onto your patio or deck, for more room to mix and mingle.
Opening that same barn door will bring the scenic beauty of the outdoors, right into your home.
You can enjoy the stunning views and vistas that nature has created while you relax on the couch, prepare a meal, or even while you’re sitting in your soaker tub, it’s totally your choice.
While construction costs vary from one area to another, a prefab steel barndominium can cost as much as 50% less than a comparable wood framed barndo.
The current square foot pricing for a home in Texas is $130.00, and a “basic” steel barndominium shell kit can cost from $40.00 to $65.00 per square foot.
If we do the math on a 2,000 square foot home, a traditional home would cost you $260,000.00. While a steel barndo kit would cost between $80,000.00 - $130,000.00, leaving you between $80K - $130K to build out the rooms and finishes to make your barndominium a picture-perfect dream home.
And don’t forget that steel is much easier to maintain than wood, so your maintenance costs are significantly less expensive. No need to worry about pests like termites or carpenter ants either, which will also lower your homeowner’s insurance rate.
A barndominium has plenty of space for everything on your “must-have list”.
Your assembled barndominium is completely open concept, the walls and rooms can be configured to meet whatever needs you might have.
When you consider all of the benefits that a steel barndominium provides, cost, versatility, true indoor/outdoor living, and fast construction time, it’s very easy to see why the barndo craze just keeps growing.
Originally written in March 2020. This article is a writing sample, for demonstrative purposes.
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