­If you’ve been considering new construction on your property, you’ve likely heard about the option of building a pole barn. You may be asking “what is a pole barn anyway?” Before you make any decisions, learn the key facts about building a pole barn on your property. Chances are, you’ll realize that a pole barn is perfect for whatever type of structure you need!

What Is a Pole Barn?

Pole barns are a type of post-frame construction – a technique used for centuries to quickly construct sturdy, reliable structures. Post-frame construction is a highly engineered solution that combines efficiency and adaptability.

The key aspect of pole buildings is that they’re designed with posts as a framing member, which are buried a few feet into the ground. These serve as a key to the foundation of the entire barn, which is far less than expensive and time-consuming to prepare compared to other types of construction.

The name “pole barn” stems from the 1930s. Due to a disrupted economy from the Great Depression and Dust Bowl, farmers turned to the most cost-efficient materials they could to construct new buildings: recycled telephone poles. These “telephone pole barns” were shortened to simply “pole barns,” and ushered in a new era of American pole barns.

What Are the Primary Advantages of a Pole Barn?

#1. Easier Foundation

One of the most difficult parts of new construction is establishing a foundation. They can be expensive and often require significant time to prepare. However, pole barns can be built without all that foundation work.

Unlevel ground, gravel or dirt are all clear for pole barn construction. Because the building is supported by deep-set poles, you don’t need to prepare a level bed of concrete to start building. The only concrete required is in each footer as you set the poles.

The lack of a strict concrete foundation opens the doors for you to build your pole barn in a variety of areas. Depending on your homestead, you may have an area that’s not suitable to be covered in concrete and perfectly-leveled.

#2. Less Expensive

Pole buildings overall require less wood to complete than typical buildings. This is due to the intensive framing and additional structural support required by other traditional types of construction. Fewer materials means your overall costs will be lower.

Additionally, the lack of a necessary foundation can save you a significant portion of your overall costs. Creating a concrete foundation for a barn or garage is typically about 10 to 20 percent of your overall cost. Because pole barns don’t require this, you have the option to save a lot if you don’t need or want a concrete foundation.

#3. Less Labor Intensive

Due to their design, contractors or do-it-yourselfers can more easily construct a pole building in less time than other buildings. If you’re building the pole barn yourself, this means you can save precious hours of work while getting your new pole barn garage or hobby shop sooner.

If you’re using a team of professionals, like our preferred builders, you’ll save on labor costs due to the decrease in overall construction time. Either way, it’s a win for you.

#4. Better Insulation

Whether you’re creating a pole barn for animals or just to use as a private man cave, it’s important that your building is properly insulated. The wide spacing between posts in the pole barn frame allows for better insulation due to fewer thermal breaks.

The design of pole barns also naturally creates better ventilation, so you can enjoy a more comfortable environment with higher air quality.

Are Pole Barns Suitable for Snowy Climates?

This question is common for those that live in northern states and experience the heaviest snows. Every pole barn is rated for a snow load based on your region. If you live in the snowiest of states, your pole barn will be planned to handle a blizzard.

DIY Pole Barns makes it easy, too! When you start customizing your pole barn with our instant quote tool, you’ll be asked for your zip code. We use this to identify an appropriate snow load for your barn!

Do Pole Barns Have Automatic Doors?

They can! The door you install on your barn is completely up to you. There are several options to choose from, and each type of pole barn door comes with its own benefits and drawbacks.

If you’re building a pole barn garage, an automatic door makes the most sense. However, if you’re building a barn for horses or agricultural equipment, you may not want or need an automatic door.

Learn about the different types of pole barn doors available to see which one might work best for your new building.

Do I Need a Permit to Build a Pole Barn?

Typically, yes. Most cities will require a permit to build any permanent structure, though some waive this requirement for exceptionally small sheds or other structures. However, every city is different, and the permits required vary dramatically.

It’s important that contacting your local government to learn what permits you may need is one of your first steps when seriously considering a pole barn. Not only can it help you decide on key decisions like size and placement, it can save you from a massive headache down the road.

During the planning stages of your pole barn, read up on pole barn electrical codes and zoning.

Can I Use a Pole Barn for Buildings Other Than a Barn?

Absolutely! It’s easy to think of post-frame structures as just agricultural barns, but they’re perfect for a variety of uses:

Garages – One of the most common uses of a pole barn. Due to their scalability in depth and height, you can create a comfortable garage for one car or a larger structure to house your RV!

Workshop – Do you have a hobby that needs dedicated space or room for big equipment? A pole barn is a great option for craftsman, musicians, artists and more.

Horse Stables – If you’re a dedicated equestrian, pole barns make excellent stables for horses, especially during the colder months.

Man Cave – A popular option for those that want a place to just get away from it all. Every person can benefit from having a quiet retreat, and a pole barn gives you plenty of options to create the perfect escape.

A pole barn can be used for almost any purpose! Some even choose to design an entire pole barn home. Post-frame construction is incredibly versatile, allowing you to design the ideal building for any need.

Find Your Perfect Pole Barn Today – Get an Instant Quote Online!

Do you have more questions about pole barns? Call our knowledgeable staff at (937) 547-9100. If you’re ready to build your pole barn, lock in a quote with DIY Pole Barns using our Instant Quote tool!

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