Thursday, February 22, 2024

Things About Steel Barndominiums That Just Make Sense

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The latest trend in rural housing is the barndominium (or “barndo”)—and for good reasons. It’s an affordable, quick way to build the home of your dreams. 

If you’re considering designing and building a barndominium but still weighing all the pros and cons, read on to learn more about how building a steel barndo could be the perfect option. 

What is a barndominium? 

The word “barndominium” was coined to describe what happens when a farmer converts an old barn into a liveable workspace. In the modern work-from-home era, these rustic yet modern homes have become more popular in rural communities. It’s even getting the attention of former city dwellers who are looking for a taste of a simpler lifestyle. 

These days, most people don’t use existing barns at all, opting for the flexibility to design and build their own brand from scratch. 

How is a barndo different from a condo or traditional house?

A barndo doesn’t resemble a condominium, but they are a type of buildings people live in. In a condo, you share at least one wall with your neighbors, whereas a barndo is a detached home. It’s more similar to a single-family home with an open floor plan. The main difference is the materials used to build it.

While most traditional homes are made primarily of wood, barndos are often made with steel or other metals. They tend to have high ceilings with exposed beams, giving them an industrial or loft-like look that provides plenty of open space for living and working. They’re a good fit for homeowners who want to set aside space for hobbies like woodworking, art, or other craftwork.   

If you’re still unsure if a custom barndo would work for you, here are five things about steel barndominiums that just make sense. 


With inflation hitting rural America hard, demand for steel barndominiums is growing due to the affordability and availability of steel and other metals. You’ll also save on construction costs because of the structure’s simplicity. You won’t need as many interior walls as a traditional home because barndos usually have open floor plans. They often incorporate the living area with a workspace or storage space.  

Design Flexibility

Because of the open layout of a barndominium, you can design unique interiors that are only limited by your imagination. You can host a cooking class in your open kitchen, build an obstacle course for your rescue cats along the rafters, or spend time with your family in a custom living space.  

Low Maintenance

Barndominiums don’t face many of the same repair and maintenance requirements as other types of homes. Unlike wood-framed homes, steel barndos aren’t at risk of expensive damage from insects like termites or carpenter ants. That’s one less repair you’ll have to worry about in the long run. 

Another big cost that most homeowners face is repairing the foundation of the house. A foundation of steel beams is heavier and won’t tend to shift around. It won’t require much maintenance or repairs, even when exposed to extreme weather conditions or normal wear and tear. 

Energy Efficiency

With the rising costs of both gas and electricity, energy efficiency is a factor to consider when building a home. Barndominiums are fantastic in that category for a few reasons. 

The type of steel used to build barndos is naturally more efficient at insulating the home, so the interior will remain cooler in the summer and retain heat in the winter. Most steel barndos are also built with energy-efficient windows and foam insulation that provides better thermal protection than the fiberglass insulation in most traditional homes.  


When thinking about building a home, safety is always a big concern, especially if you have small children. Another advantage of a steel barndominium is that the construction materials are very durable and safe. 

Unlike homes built out of wood and drywall, the steel frame of your barndo will be strong enough to withstand even the most extreme weather conditions, such as tornadoes, floods, and harsh winds. Even a fire will be easier to deal with since steel doesn’t burn through like wood.

Final Thoughts

The decision to build a custom home is very personal, and you have to make a lot of small decisions along the way. You have to consider many factors, such as cost, functionality, and design aesthetic, to name a few. 

If you’ve read this far, you’re on your way to being well-informed about barndominiums. Hopefully, this article brings you closer to finding that perfect home for you and your family. If you want a durable, low-maintenance residence that will suit your lifestyle, personality, and budget, a steel barndominium should be at the top of your list.

Published by: Martin De Juan

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