Pole Barn House vs Barndominium – Your Ultimate Guide

The alternative housing movement has been incredibly positive for homebuilders of all kinds. With so many alternatives to traditional homes, builders have lots of options for their home projects. However, you must know which home type is going to be best for you. Understanding the differences between a pole barn house vs barndominium can help you make the right decision. 

pole barn house vs barndominium

While pole barn houses and barndominiums are similar, they have some key differences. Knowing what these are and how they affect the longevity and quality of the home is crucial. This will help you make the best choice for you, your family, and the region you are building in. With any home project, being prepared and knowledgeable is always your best bet. 

What is a Barndominium? 

Barndominiums have been more popular than ever in recent years due to rising home costs and media exposure. Their durability and easy construction make them a great choice for all kinds of people. Barndominiums use a steel frame with posts that are driven into a concrete slab foundation. This makes them incredibly strong and resistant to almost any type of weather. 

Barndominiums are almost entirely made of steel, and their structure heavily depends on their concrete slab. They also use steel siding for the shell and oftentimes, even for the roof. When deciding between a pole barn house vs barndominium, this is one of the most important considerations. If you need the durability of steel, a barndominium could be the best choice. 

What is a Pole Barn House? 

Pole barn houses are very similar to barndominiums in many ways. For the most part, pole barns are used for things like agricultural purposes. Stables, barns, and other buildings on farms are usually pole barns. This is because they are easy to build and have a very quick construction time. 

pole barn house vs barndominium

Pole barns have a similar structure to barndominiums in that they use poles that are driven into the ground. However, pole barns use wood as opposed to steel. The siding and roofing are all made of wood and timber, even though the design is very similar. In this way, pole barn homes are more similar to traditional homes in a structural sense. 

Differences Between a Pole Barn House vs Barndominium 

When thinking about the differences between a pole barn house vs barndominium, materials are key. With a pole barn house, there is a lot more wood used in the actual structure. The frame and exterior siding are almost always going to be made of wood timber. The wood frame of a pole barn house will be driven into the ground or a concrete slab, just like with a barndominium. 

A barndominium, on the other hand, is almost completely made of steel. Everything from the frame to the siding is all made of metal, which can be much more durable and dependable. If you are going to be building in an area with a lot of extreme weather, a barndominium is a better option. The steel will be able to stand up to a lot more use and abuse over the years. 

Benefits of a Pole Barn House 

When deciding between a pole barn house vs barndominium, you need to think about the circumstances. Where you are building and what the weather is like will dictate your decision. A pole barn house uses wood for the structure. The benefit of this is that you don’t have to worry about rust on the exterior, which can be a big problem with barndominiums. 

With a pole barn house, you also get the aesthetic warmth of the wood. A barndominium needs quite a bit of modification to get the homey, craftsman-like look that is so popular. Wood has a natural, organic look and feels that will be present as soon as it is built. If this is what you are looking for, a pole barn house could be a better option.  

Benefits of a Barndominium 

If you are trying to decide between a pole barn house vs barndominium, you have to think about your needs. The steel construction of a barndominium makes it incredibly durable in harsh weather. If you are building in an area that gets hurricanes or strong storms, a barndominium is your best bet. The exterior steel will hold up much better under extreme weather conditions. 

pole barn house vs barndominium

The other major difference between a pole barn house vs barndominium is the maintenance. With a wood home, you have to worry about things like mold, rot, and mildew. While steel can rust after a time, it will not deteriorate the same way. A barndominium will not need the same amount of maintenance over the years as a pole barn house will. 

Which is Better? 

Deciding between a pole barn house vs barndominium will all depend on your needs. It is difficult to say which one is better since they will both have benefits in different circumstances. However, a barndominium is going to be more durable and low-maintenance in a wider variety of regions. If you are looking for something that will last for many years, a barndominium is your best bet. 

Barndominiums are also going to be better for people who are new to home building. Since you can purchase barndominium kits, the choice between a pole barn house vs barndominium is simple. Purchasing a kit will make construction much easier and a lot more accessible. With no wood to work with, they can be built by almost anyone. Even if you are new to the idea of home building, a barndominium will be much easier and a lot cheaper in the long run.  Using a barndominium kit under 50k can help you save time and money on your construction project.


Choosing between a pole barn house vs barndominium is a difficult decision. However, as long as you know which one will be more suited to your circumstances, you can make the right choice. The region where you are building, your level of experience, and your preferences will all determine the answer. With the right planning, you can make a good choice for you and your family. 

If you would like more guides like this one, be sure to check out the rest of Barndos.com. There, you will find all kinds of tips and tricks from the pros. You will also find featured barndominiums that will get you inspired for your own project.