Barndominium Ideas: How to Build Your Dream Home (2024)

What is a Barndominium?

A barndominium is a term that describes a structure that combines a barn or a farm building with a living space. The term is a portmanteau of barn and condominium, but it can also refer to any type of building that has both a residential and a non-residential function. For example, a barndominium can be a workshop, a garage, a studio, an office, or a guest house, as well as a home.

Barndominiums can be built from scratch, or they can be converted from existing structures. They can also be made from different materials, such as wood, metal, stone, or brick. The most common type of barndominium is a metal barndominium, which is made from prefabricated metal panels that are easy to assemble and customize. Metal barndominiums are also very durable, resistant to fire, pests, and weather, and require low maintenance.

What are the Benefits of Living in a Barndominium?

There are many reasons why people choose to live in a barndominium, such as:

  • Versatility: A barndominium can serve multiple purposes, depending on your needs and preferences. You can use it as a home, a workspace, a hobby area, or a combination of all. You can also design it to fit your lifestyle, whether you want a cozy and rustic feel, or a sleek and modern look.
  • Cost-effectiveness: A barndominium can be more affordable than a traditional home, especially if you build it yourself or use a barndominium kit. You can also save money on utilities, taxes, and insurance, as a barndominium typically has lower energy consumption, lower property value, and lower risk of damage.
  • Durability: A barndominium can last for decades, as it is built to withstand harsh conditions and wear and tear. A metal barndominium, in particular, is very strong and sturdy, and can protect you and your belongings from fire, pests, and weather. A barndominium can also be easily repaired and upgraded, as it has a simple and modular structure.
  • Customizability: A barndominium can be tailored to your specific needs and tastes, as it offers a lot of flexibility and creativity in design and layout. You can choose from a variety of floor plans, or even have a custom plan designed for you. You can also add features and amenities that suit your lifestyle, such as a loft, a porch, a fireplace, or a pool.

What are the Drawbacks of Living in a Barndominium?

Living in a barndominium also has some challenges and limitations, such as:

  • Regulations: A barndominium may not be allowed or approved in some areas, as it may not meet the zoning, building, or safety codes and standards. You may need to obtain permits, inspections, and approvals from the local authorities before you can build or live in a barndominium. You may also face some restrictions or difficulties in financing, insuring, or selling your barndominium, as some lenders, insurers, or buyers may not recognize or accept it as a valid property type.
  • Comfort: A barndominium may not be as comfortable or cozy as a traditional home, as it may have less insulation, ventilation, or natural light. You may also experience more noise, dust, or temperature fluctuations, as a barndominium is more exposed to the outside environment. You may need to invest more in heating, cooling, or soundproofing systems to make your barndominium more livable and enjoyable.
  • Privacy: A barndominium may not offer as much privacy or security as a traditional home, as it may have more windows, doors, or openings that can be seen or accessed by others. You may also have less separation or distinction between your personal and professional spaces, as a barndominium combines both functions in one structure. You may need to create boundaries or rules to maintain your privacy and security, as well as your work-life balance.

How Much Does it Cost to Build a Barndominium?

The cost of building a barndominium can vary depending on many factors, such as location, size, materials, and features. However, on average, a barndominium will cost between $50-90 per square foot to build. This means that a 2,000 square foot barndominium will cost between $100,000-180,000 to build. Of course, this can vary based on your unique requirements and preferences. If you want to save money, you can build your own barndominium using a barndominium kit, which can cost between $20-40 per square foot. However, this will require more time, effort, and skills on your part. If you want to hire a professional, you can expect to pay more for labor, design, and installation services.

What are Some Barndominium Design Ideas and Examples?

There are many ways to design and decorate your barndominium, depending on your style and personality. Here are some of the most popular and inspiring barndominium design ideas and examples that you can use as a reference or inspiration:

  • Rustic Charm: If you love the look of a classic barn, then opt for a barndominium design with a country feel. Consider adding wood-paneled walls and exposed beams to create a cozy atmosphere that still embraces the traditional aesthetic of your home. You can also add some antique or vintage furniture and accessories to add some character and charm to your space. For example, you can check out this Beautiful Texas Barndominium with Open Floor Plan, which features a spacious and inviting living area with a fireplace, a large kitchen island, and a dining table, all surrounded by wood and stone elements.
  • Industrial Edge: For an industrial edge to your barndominium, incorporate steel and stone elements throughout the space. This will give it an urban vibe while still keeping things comfortable and inviting. You can also add some modern and minimalist furniture and fixtures to create a contrast and balance with the other materials. For example, you can check out this Connecticut Charmer, which features a sleek and stylish living area with a leather sofa, a metal coffee table, and a brick wall, all complemented by a wood ceiling and floor.
  • Open Floor Plan: An open floor plan is perfect for maximizing space in your barndominium while creating an airy and bright atmosphere. It makes your living area a fun and communal gathering spot that integrates seamlessly with your kitchen and dining areas. You can also add some windows, skylights, or glass doors to bring in more natural light and fresh air. For example, you can check out this Timber-Frame Airbnb, which features a stunning and spacious living area with a high ceiling, a fireplace, and a large window, all connected to a modern and functional kitchen and dining area.
  • Loft Area: A loft area is ideal for creating additional living or entertainment space without taking up too much floor area. This is a smart way to maximize the space you have available while also creating an exciting and cozy spot for guests or yourself to hang out in. You can use the loft area as a bedroom, a lounge, a game room, or anything else you want. You can also add some railings, stairs, or ladders to access the loft area safely and easily. For example, you can check out this Barndominium with Loft, which features a charming and rustic living area with a wood stove, a sofa, and a coffee table, all leading to a cozy and comfortable loft area with a bed and a dresser.


A barndominium is a type of home that combines a barn or a farm building with a living space. It offers many benefits, such as versatility, cost-effectiveness, durability, and customizability, but it also has some drawbacks, such as regulations, comfort, and privacy. The cost of building a barndominium can vary depending on many factors, but it is typically cheaper than a traditional home. There are also many ways to design and decorate your barndominium, depending on your style and personality. You can use these barndominium design ideas and examples as a guide or inspiration to create your dream home.

Photo by Kevin Woblick on Unsplash

Barndominium Ideas: How to Build Your Dream Home (2024)
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