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Building a Barndominium in Indiana | Best 2022 Guide

Also known as Hoosier State, Indiana provides an ideal setting for building a barndominium. The State of Indiana possesses a rustic appeal that speaks to the original barndominiums’ agricultural origins. Aside from fitting into Indiana’s geography, we will tell you why you should consider building a barndominium in Indiana. 

This article will give you a clearer picture of what it takes to build a barndominium. We will also tackle common issues that future barndominium owners must deal with during construction. By the end of this article, consider yourself an expert in barndominiums and ready to start building your first barndo. 

Can You Build a Barndominium in Indiana?

Yes, Indiana is an excellent choice for building a barndominium. The central and northern parts of the state are flat and provide stable foundations for barndominiums. If you want a barndominium with a great view, the southern part of Indiana is ideal because although it is hilly and has many forests, that make the area scenic.  

Indiana Barndominiums Overview

The term barndominium refers to buildings with barn-like exteriors. This is because the original barndominiums were old barns repurposed as houses, shops, garages, or sheds. Modern barndominiums still look like barns from the outside, but most are newly constructed buildings and not converted old barns. Another distinct characteristic of old barndominiums is that most are made of steel. Although most contemporary barndominiums are made of steel, some barndominiums are made of wood. Some barndominiums combine metal and wood as building materials. 

Check our Barndominium 101 Guide to learn about different barndominium types, building materials, and other useful information. 

Advantages and Disadvantages

A barndominium is a considerable investment, so it is best to know everything about barndominiums before you commit to building one. Although it is great to learn about the benefits of barndominiums, knowing about the unpleasant side of barndominiums is equally essential since it allows you to prepare yourself and find ways of negating the disadvantages of barndominiums. 

Advantages

  • Barndominiums are cheap – A barndominium is an excellent alternative if you want a new building but have limited funds because they are cheap to build. Unlike traditional buildings, you can construct a barndominium using fewer materials. If you have handyman and woodwork skills, you can save more by buying a barndominium kit and handling the rest of the work yourself. 
  • They are easier to build – If you need a new building and are pressed for time, go for a barndominium. It takes less time to construct because there’s no need to build and cure concrete components like walls and posts. A barndo kit can cut short construction time because the frame, shell, and sidings are pre-fabricated. 
  • They are durable – Metal buildings are more durable than any other material, especially timber. However, this doesn’t mean that wood barndominiums are not durable. When built according to building standards, a wood barndominium can withstand natural forces and keep its occupants safe. 
  • They are easier to maintain – Keeping your building in top condition requires constant care and a considerable amount of money. However, it is easier to maintain a barndominium. Unlike concrete structures, metal buildings don’t develop cracks or chips. There’s no need to replace broken shingles, missing tiles, or broken bricks. The most you will have to do is repaint your barndominium once every few years or fix dinged metal sidings. This can result in savings that you can put towards a college fund or an expansion project. 

Disadvantages

  • They have a limited market – Should you decide to sell your barndominium, it might take longer to find a buyer. This is because the demand for barndominiums is more limited than conventional houses. The best thing to do is join our Facebook group, where you can find other members who might be in the market for a barndominium. 
  • They can be prone to rust – Barndominiums have more metal components that make them prone to rust. However, there are ways for you to prevent corrosion and extend the life of your barndominium. The first step is applying a protective coating to rust-prone components. You can also minimize corrosion by immediately fixing leaks that let in moisture, promoting corrosion.  
  • Building/zoning restrictions  – Unlike traditional houses, you cannot build barndominiums anywhere. Some cities prohibit the construction of metal buildings within city limits. There are also gated communities that prohibit the construction of barndominiums. 

Regulations

There are regulations surrounding building construction, and you must learn about your county’s building regulations to avoid penalties and fines. Violating building regulations can also result in work suspension and throw you off your construction schedule. 

It is not unusual to see two counties within the same state with different regulations. This is because the needs of one county may be different from another. For example, if you are building in Hendricks County, you need to submit a Clean Water Permit together with your application. St. Joseph County does not list a Clean Water Permit as one of its requirements.

To avoid confusion, speak directly with officers in your area’s building and zoning office and ask for a complete list of requirements. You can also ask for tips on where to source materials or which builders they can recommend. 

Taxes

One of the most compelling reasons to build your barndo in Indiana is its low property tax rates. Indiana’s property tax rate is one of the lowest in the country, at an average of 0.85% of the assessed value of your building. You’ll save money because you’re paying lower barndominium taxes in Indiana. Check with your county tax assessor’s office to get a precise computation of your barndominium taxes just to be safe. 

Insurance

Although insuring a barndominium is not required, you might need to get a policy if you plan on taking out a construction loan. Insuring your barndominium can also protect your investment because your policy will cover repairs or rebuilding if needed. If you’re curious how much a homeowner’s insurance might cost, the average premium in Indiana is $1,180 per year for a $250,000 property. Check with several insurance providers in your area, and you might get lucky and land a lower premium. 

Financing

Building a barndominium can result in financial strain because of the amount of money the project requires. Barndominium financing is an option you should explore to build a barndominium without siphoning your savings. Below are some local banks and financial institutions that offer loans to help you build your barndo. 

Old National Bank

Old National Bank has been operating since 1934 in Evansville, Indiana, and offers a One-Step Construction Loan to customers.

German American Bank

German American Bank was founded in 1910 and has headquarters in Jasper, Indiana. They have an available construction loan for borrowers. 

Huntington National Bank

Although this financial institution has headquarters in Columbus, Ohio, it has several branches in Indianapolis where you can apply for a construction loan. 

Builders

One of the best ways to ensure that you have a barndominium that can last decades is by hiring the best local builder. They can utilize knowledge from years of professional experience to build your barndominium while maintaining high-quality standards. Experienced builders also know reliable local suppliers where you can source materials at competitive prices.  

Graber Post Buildings, Inc.

Graber Post Buildings, Inc. has been operating since 1973. They design and build post-frame barns and buildings. 

MilMar Buildings

MilMar Buildings constructs residential, commercial, and agricultural pole buildings. Their office is located in La Porte, Indiana. 

K. Graber Construction

An Amboy-based company with more than 30 years of professional experience. They build pole barn homes as well as commercial and agricultural pole barns. 

FBi Buildings

FBi Buildings has more than 60 years of experience and builds for customers in several states, including Indiana. 

Dream Builders

A Bloomington company that builds custom homes, including barndominiums. 

If you cannot find an available local builder, we have a list of barndominium builders that build barndos in several states, including Indiana. 

Kit Providers

If you are a DIY person, the idea of building a barndominium yourself is all too tempting. What you need is a reliable provider of building kits to get you started. 

Steelcore Built

Bloomington-based supplier of pre-engineered buildings, including barndominiums, horse arenas, mezzanines, and others.  

Hansen Pole Buildings

A Minnesota-based company that supplies pole barn kits to several states, including Indiana. 

FBi Buildings

FBi Buildings was founded in 1958 and supplies pole barn kits in five pre-designed sizes. 

Indiana Metal

A Bainbridge company that supplies pole barn kits, metal roof panels, snow guards, and flashings. 

Hoosier Buildings

A pole barn specialist company that supplies residential, equestrian, and commercial pole barn kits. 

You also have the option of buying your barndo kit from our list of barndominium kit providers that ship throughout the country.

Cost

According to Fixr, the average cost of a house in Indiana is between $188,000 and $300,000. A barndominium might be more affordable if you want to save money. According to a HomeBlue article, a 2,000-square-foot barndo in Indiana costs between $132,000 and $150,000 or $66 to $75 per square foot.  

These figures above are just estimates, and barndominium prices can change depending on the size and complexity of the barndo. You can also use our barndominium cost calculator to estimate the cost of your planned barndo. 

Where Can You Build a Barndo in Indiana?

Because some cities restrict the construction of metal buildings within their city limits, small towns like Nashville, Williamsport, Aurora, and Goshen are top choices for building a barndominium in Indiana. 

4 Things to Consider Before Building a Barndominium in Indiana

Much thought should go into building a barndominium if you want to be successful. You need to consider several angles beforehand because implementing changes can be challenging and expensive once you’ve built it. 

The number of floors

Deciding on how many stories your barndo will have is crucial because the type of kit to use on your barndo depends on it. Are you building a single-story or two-story barndominium? A two-story barndominium requires more materials not just to build the second floor but to ensure that the building can support the load of the second floor. The size of your lot is also a consideration because a two-story barndominium might be better if you have a small lot that you want to maximize. 

Features of your barndo

Ask yourself what kind of features you want and need in your barndominium. A large garage should be part of your plan if you have several vehicles. If you work from home, it might be prudent to add a home office. This can help ensure that your barndominium will be functional and can improve your quality of life. 

Possibilities of expansion

Sometimes, monetary considerations prevent us from building a barndominium with all the features we need. If there are plans you need to put off, leave provisions to add them in the future easily. If you want to add a guest room in the future, leave provisions for plumbing so you can build an en-suite guest room. 

Your location

Your location has considerable influence on your building project so consult your contractor for suggestions. For example, a well might be a great addition if your land is in an area that often experiences dry periods. Or, if you are in an area notorious for termites, steer away from a wooden barndominium and go for a metal building instead. 

Is it Worth Building a Barndo in Indiana?

Yes, building a barndominium in Indiana is a project you need to pursue. Indiana’s low property taxes can result in huge savings. The state’s rustic atmosphere can also make for an idyllic setting for your barndominium. 

If you’re still unsure about how you want your barndominium to look, consult our collection of barndominium floor plans or head over to our Pinterest account for inspiration. You can also consult our barndominium construction guide if you want to understand better how barndominiums are built. 

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Written by Metal-Building-Homes.com

We strive to deliver informational and inspirational content for unconventional homes. From barndominiums to steel-framed modular homes, this is the place to browse if you're looking into untraditional housing options.