Are you tired of living in traditional homes and residential buildings that don’t fit your lifestyle and budget? Do you dream of having a spacious and modern living space that allows you to express your creativity and personality? If you’re a homeowner in Alberta, Canada, you might consider owning a barndominium home.
In this article, we’ll dive deep into the world of barndominiums and metal post-frame buildings and explore the benefits, challenges, and opportunities they offer. We’ll also share practical tips on choosing the right design, builder, and customization options to create a unique, livable home that meets your needs and preferences.
What are Barndominiums and Post Frame Buildings?
Before we dive into the specifics of barndominiums, let’s start with some basics. A post-frame building is a type of construction that uses vertical poles or posts to support the roof and walls. This technique is known for its durability, flexibility, and cost-effectiveness. It allows for a vast open interior space that can be customized for various purposes, such as storage, workshops, or commercial use.
A barndominium is a specific post-frame building designed and built for residential purposes. It typically features a steel frame, a metal roof, and exterior cladding made of wood, stone, or other materials. The interior is left unfinished or semi-finished, allowing the homeowner to customize it according to their needs and preferences.
Choosing the Right Barndominium Kit Provider or Dedicated Builder
Once you’ve decided to build a barndominium, the next step is to find the right partner to bring your vision to life. There are two main options to consider: barndominium kit providers and dedicated builders.
Barndominium kit providers offer pre-engineered and pre-cut packages with all the materials and instructions needed to assemble your barndominium. This option suits DIY enthusiasts or people who want to save money on labor costs and have some construction skills. However, it requires more time, effort, and attention to detail, as you’ll be responsible for assembling and customizing your barndominium.
On the other hand, dedicated builders offer a turnkey solution that includes design, construction, and customization services. This option suits homeowners who want a hassle-free and professional experience but may be more expensive than a kit package.
Here are some tips to help you choose the right barndominium kit provider or dedicated builder:
- Research online and offline: Look for steel barndominium builders and kit providers in your area or Alberta, and check their websites, social media pages, and customer reviews. Attend home shows, exhibitions, and seminars to meet builders in person and ask questions.
- Compare prices, packages, and services: Ask for quotes and catalogs from several kit providers or builders and compare them based on their pricing, included features, customization options, warranty, and customer service.
- Check reviews online and references: Look for testimonials, case studies, and references from previous customers and verify their quality, satisfaction, and reliability. Ensure that they provide professional customer service. Ask for photos and videos of their completed projects to see their style and quality. They should also offer comprehensive support.
- Ask for a quote and a timeline: Once you’ve narrowed your choices, ask for a detailed quote that includes all the costs and services involved in your project. Ask for a timeline that shows the estimated start and completion dates and your project milestones.
Working with a Professional Draftsman to Create a Workable Floor Plan
One of the most critical aspects of building a pole barn is designing a floor plan that suits your needs, budget, and preferences. While you can use pre-designed plans from kit providers or builders, working with a professional draftsman who can create a customized and workable plan that meets your unique requirements is recommended.
Here are some tips to help you work with a professional drafting technician:
- Define your needs, preferences, and budget: Before meeting with a drafting technician, make a list of your must-have features, such as the number of bedrooms, bathrooms, and living areas, the size of the kitchen and dining area, the type of storage, and the desired amenities. Also, consider your budget and timeline for your project.
- Determine the size, shape, and orientation of your steel building: Based on your needs and budget, choose a size and shape that fits your property and zoning requirements. Consider the orientation of your building, the views, and the sun exposure.
- Allocate space for living areas, bedrooms, bathrooms, and storage: Work with the draftsman to create a functional and comfortable interior that maximizes your living space and meets your storage needs. Consider the traffic flow, the privacy, and accessibility of each area.
- Plan for utilities, appliances, and fixtures: Discuss with the draftsman the placement and size of your HVAC system, plumbing, electrical wiring, and lighting. Choose energy-efficient appliances and fixtures that suit your style and budget.
- Consider the resale value and the insurance requirements: Make sure your floor plan complies with the building codes and insurance requirements in your area, and consider the resale value and the appeal of your design.
Customizing Your Interior to Fit Your Lifestyle and Taste
Once you have a workable floor plan, it’s time to customize your interior to make it your own. This is the fun part of building a barndominium, as you can choose from endless options and styles to express your creativity, unlike a traditional home.
Here are some tips to help you customize your interior:
- Choose the right flooring, walls, and ceilings: Select a flooring material that is durable, easy to clean, and suits your style, such as concrete, tile, or hardwood. Consider the walls and ceilings as a canvas for your decor and choose a paint or finish that complements your furniture and accessories.
- Install functional and stylish fixtures and appliances: Choose fixtures and appliances that match your lifestyle and taste, such as a farmhouse sink, a gas range, or a modern shower head. Ensure they are energy-efficient, easy to use, and maintain.
FAQs About Barndominiums in Alberta
1. Are barndominiums legal in Alberta?
Yes, barndominiums are legal in Alberta, as long as they comply with your area’s zoning and building codes. You may need to obtain a special permit or approval if your barndominium is considered a non-standard structure.
2. How much does it cost to build a barndominium in Alberta?
The cost of building a barndominium in Alberta depends on several factors, such as the size, design, customization, and location of your building. On average, a basic barndominium kit can cost between $30 and $50 per square foot, while a custom-built barndominium can cost between $100 and $200 per square foot.
Building a barndominium in Alberta can be a rewarding and exciting experience, as it allows you to create a unique and livable homestead that suits your lifestyle and preferences. By choosing the right kit provider or dedicated builder, working with a professional drafting technician, and customizing your interior, you can create a space that reflects your personality and meets your needs.
However, knowing the challenges and considerations involved in building a barndominium, such as zoning and building codes, financing and insurance, and maintenance and insulation, is essential. By researching, asking questions, and planning ahead, you can ensure a smooth and successful construction project that lasts years to come.