Barndominium Cost vs. House

The dream of building a home from scratch is something that everyone has at some point. Being able to completely design the house from the ground up has a lot of benefits. However, not everyone can afford the high cost of building a home from scratch and hiring professionals to do the work. That’s why it is important to understand barndominium cost vs. house cost when thinking about your options. 

barndominium cost vs. house

Barndominiums are a great alternative to a traditional home and are becoming more popular every year. People are starting to see the value in building homes using pole barns as the shell for the structure. On top of that, more contractors and craftspeople are willing to take on such unique projects. Understanding the difference between barndominium cost vs. house cost can help you decide which is right for you. 

Cost of Building a Barndominium 

Before you decide that a barndominium is a good option for your build, you must understand the costs. Barndominiums tend to be much cheaper than a traditional homes and are, therefore, much more accessible. Because of this, they are a great choice for people who might not otherwise be able to build their dream homes. Barndominiums tend to cost anywhere between $62 and $136 per square foot to build. 

One thing to keep in mind with these prices, though, is that they will vary from state to state. You may not be able to build your barndominium for that cheap in an expensive area. If land and labor are more expensive, the barndominium cost vs. house cost may not be that different. This is why many barndominiums are built in rural areas with a low cost of living. 

Cost of Building a House 

Building a traditional stick frame house is generally going to be more expensive than a barndominium. Just like with barndominiums, though, the cost will depend heavily on the region. When we talk about the cost of building, we are only talking about the structure itself. This does not include things like land, furniture, finish work, and all the things that make a house liveable. 

barndominium cost vs. house

The cost of building a traditional house in the United States is, on average, between $100 and $200. If you are going to be building an average-sized 2,600-square-foot home, you can expect to pay around $485,000. This means that most people will have a hard time financing the project. Because of this, many people don’t see a home build all the way through to the end. 

Why is it Cheaper to Build a Barndominium? 

There are a number of reasons why barndominium cost vs. house cost is so different. Barndominiums are mostly cheaper because they don’t take as much time to build. A traditional house can take many months and even years to finish. This is due to the complexity of the stick framing and the general labor it takes to get one off the ground. 

A barndominium, on the other hand, can be built in about half the time. The simpler foundation and framing make the project a lot easier. Because of this, you will end up spending half as much on labor and materials. In the construction business, time is money, and the quicker a project is, the cheaper it will be. 

Is a House or Barndominium Better?

The barndominium cost vs. house cost difference means that many people will find a barndominium to be a better option. However, that doesn’t necessarily mean that a barndominium is a better option. Barndominiums are easier to build, but they also leave you fewer options for exterior styling. You will be more or less bound to the design of the pole barn shell, which won’t be right for everyone. 

While barndominiums are limited with the exterior look, the interior can be customized however you want. On the inside, a barndominium can look like whatever you want it to. Most of the time, you wouldn’t even know that a barndo was built using a post-frame design. With a little creativity and modifications, you can create the perfect home with all the styles you would want from a traditional home. 

Benefits of Lower Barndominium Cost Vs. House 

When you go with the lower barndominium cost vs. house cost, you have a lot more options available. While there will be many things that you can’t afford if you go with a traditional home, a barndominium frees up cash. With the money saved building a barndo, you can afford all the furnishings and custom touches you want. These details are the things that make building your own home worth all the work. 

barndominium cost vs. house

The other major benefit of the lower barndominium cost vs. house cost is accessibility. While traditional homes are out of financial reach for a lot of people, barndos are much more reasonable. This opens up the prospect of building a home for so many more people. Barndominiums are a great option for first-time home builders or homeowners. 

When to Choose a Barndominium Over a Traditional House 

If you want to build your own home, but haven’t been able to raise the funds, barndominiums are for you. The lower barndominium cost vs. house cost means it will be much easier to come up with the money. On top of that, the lower cost also means you will be more likely to finish the project. Even if problems come up along the way, you will be able to navigate them easily. 

You should also choose a barndominium if you are someone who likes a creative challenge. Because of their basic construction, barndominiums open up a lot of design options. Think of your barndominium as a blank canvas. You can turn it into whatever you want with very little interference from the home’s structure. 


Understanding barndominium cost vs. house cost is the best way to decide if a barndo is right for you. Even if you have hit roadblocks with home construction, you can build the home of your dreams. This accessibility makes them perfect for all kinds of builders and potential homeowners. 

If you would like to learn more about barndominiums, be sure to check out the rest of There, you will find all kinds of tips and tricks from the pros and helpful guides like this one. You will also find featured barndominiums to help get you inspired and thinking about your own custom home.