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Why & How to Build a Barndominium in West Texas | 2023 Guide

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Are you planning to build a residential building in West Texas but want something unique and affordable? If your answer is yes, you should look into building a barndominium. Barndominiums have been steadily gaining popularity in West Texas these past few years because they are excellent alternatives to traditional houses. They are easy to build, require less maintenance, and are highly customizable. 

If we have your interest piqued, this comprehensive guide on barndominiums is for you. We will tell you everything you need to know about barndominiums and why you should build one. We will also provide valuable tips on building one and getting the best builders and kit suppliers to help you build your first barndominium. 

Main Reasons to Own a Barndominium in West Texas 

Here are some reasons why you should seriously consider building a barndominium in West Texas. 

Great Climate

If you are not a fan of wet climate, you will love West Texas. It is primarily hot and receives less rainfall than the rest of Texas. This is an excellent consideration for building a metal structure like a barndominium because it reduces the likelihood of your barndo getting affected by rusting or corrosion. 

With less rainfall and reduced chances of corrosion, you can extend the life of your barndominium. This can help ensure that the money you spent building your barndo will be put to good use. It also translates into savings because you don’t have to constantly repair or replace rusted parts or portions. 

Beautiful Landscape

West Texas has a magnificent landscape and is an excellent choice if you love outdoor activities. You can choose between fantastic mountain formations like the Guadalupe Mountains, the Davis Mountains, the Chisos Mountains, and the Franklin Mountains. You can also explore several canyons during your free time, like Santa Elena, Caprock, and Palo Duro. You also have access to the Monahans Sandhills State Park. 

The abundance of natural wonders to explore can provide you with enough recreational activities to rejuvenate and bond with family members while not at work or tending to your business. 

Lower Cost of Living

If you want to live in an area where you can stretch your budget, West Texas is a great option. The annual cost of living in Texas, including counties in West Texas, is lower than the national average. The average monthly electricity bill in Texas is around $155, 7% lower than the national average. The cost of gas is also one of the least expensive in the country at around $3.06 per gallon. Food is also reasonably-priced, with a family of four spending around $11,564 annually. 

With a lower cost of living, you can increase your savings for your nest egg. You can also use your savings for a well-deserved vacation or funds for a bigger barndominium. 

Wide Choice of Builders

We’ve mentioned earlier that barndominiums are extremely popular in Texas, and this gives you the advantage of having your pick among the best builders and kit suppliers. With a wide selection of builders to choose from, it will be easier to compare quotes to hire the builder that offers the most affordable services or the lowest barndominium cost per square foot

The abundance of builders also means you can access a wide range of floor plans. This means that you don’t have to limit yourself to the designs of just one of two builders. If you want a one-of-a-kind barndominium, you can also hire a builder that develops custom floor plans

Building a Barndominium in West Texas 

Let us now discuss the advantages and disadvantages of building a barndominium in West Texas. This section will clear any doubts you might have about going for a barndominium. We will also tackle some essential considerations when building a barndominium so you know what you are up against. 

Advantages   

  • It is unique – A barndominium looks unique, making it an ideal choice if you want a structure that stands out. The barn-like exteriors of a barndominium mean that you have a building that doesn’t look like any other house in the neighborhood. Check our Pinterest and Instagram accounts for design ideas to inspire you. 
  • It is easy to build – Barndominiums are easier and faster to build than conventional houses. This makes a barndo an ideal option if you want to move into your new building faster. With the help of prefabricated barndominium kits, construction times are shorter, often resulting in lower overall construction expenses. A barndominium is so easy to build that you can make a DIY project with basic construction skills. 
  • It is multipurpose – You can create a multipurpose building out of a barndominium to better use your investment. Aside from the living quarters, you can build a barndo with an attached garage to secure your vehicles. You can even build a barndominium with an attached workshop to save on commercial rental expenses. You can also build a barndo and turn it into a warehouse or a suite of office spaces. 
  • It is low maintenance – Barndominiums require less maintenance than conventional houses. Just ensure you fix holes or openings on the metal sidings to prevent rusting that can compromise your barndominium. It would be best to repaint your barndo with an anti-corrosive coating every few years to ensure maximum protection. 

Disadvantages          

  • Reselling may be challenging – Although barndominiums are gaining popularity, more homeowners still prefer traditional houses. This can make selling your barndominium in the future more challenging. However, you can join internet-based communities, like our Facebook Group, to connect with other barndominium enthusiasts who might be in the market for a new property. 
  • You might get poor cellular reception – One of the challenges most barndominium owners face is the poor cellular reception inside their barndos. This is expected because the metal shell of the barndo can weaken the incoming cellular signal. However, there are some precautions you can take to prevent the interior of your barndo from becoming a dead spot. You can use a cellular signal booster system to avoid dropped calls or missed messages. This type of system can also improve the signal that your hotspot or router receives to get a better data connection. 

Taxes 

Just like traditional houses, there are also taxes associated with barndominiums. You are responsible for paying these property taxes once you have completed and occupied your barndominium. Real property tax rates differ from one area to another, so check the local tax office for an accurate computation of your barndominium taxes. For example, Howard County collects real property taxes equivalent to 1.23% of a property’s assessed fair market value, which is lower than El Paso’s 2.09%

Insurance      

Insuring your barndominium is one of the best ways to protect your property from structural damage. When you have barndominium insurance, your policy will cover the repairs or rebuilding of your barndo, depending on the severity of damages it sustains. While insuring a barndominium is not required by law, there are instances when getting an insurance policy is a must. One example is if you plan on funding your barndominium through a loan. 

Financing

One of the misconceptions about barndominiums is that you cannot get a loan to build them. This is not true. However, some banks or mortgage companies don’t provide loans for building barndominiums. While this limits your options, it doesn’t mean you cannot take out a loan for your barndominium. 

You can still apply for a conventional loan to finance your barndominium. Other options are also available to you, including a USDA Construction Loan, FHA CConstruction Loan, and VA Construction Loan. Examples of institutions offering barndominium financing include Legacy AG Credit in Terrell and First Financial Bank in Abilene. 

Read our barndominium financing article for more insight into the various options you can explore in financing your barndominium. 

Local Builders & Kit Providers

To help you get started in your barndominium journey, let us provide you with a list of respectable barndominium builders and kit providers that build in West Texas. 

Builders

Metal Buildings of Texas

Metal Buildings of Texas is a building company founded by Douglas and Colby Liley. The company has been providing construction services since its inception in 2012. Although the company Is headquartered in Livingston, Texas, it also services customers in the nearby states of Oklahoma, Arkansas, and Louisiana.

The primary service offered by Metal Buildings of Texas is their turnkey services. If you want one company to handle all the building aspects of your barndominium, then this builder is an excellent option. Read our in-depth review of Metal Buildings of Texas to learn more about this exceptional company. 

Texas Barndominium Builder

Texas Barndominium Builder is a building company specializing in barndominiums. The company has several offices throughout Texas, including one in Abilene. The company has ready-to-use floor plans that customers can purchase and use for their barndominiums. Aside from stock floor plans, they also develop custom floor plans for customers who want something unique. 

Aside from barndominium planning and design services, Texas Barndominium Builder also offers construction services. If you have an existing barndo, you can hire the company to repair or renovate it to extend its life. 

West Texas Metal Building Pros

West Texas Metal Building Pros is a company that specializes in metal buildings. Aside from barndominiums, the company also builds commercial and agricultural metal buildings, like hangars, barns, community centers, garages, and workshops. West Texas Metal Building Pros is a full-service metal building contractor, making it the perfect choice if you want a single company to handle the entire construction project. 

SLS Enterprises

SLS Enterprises is a general contractor and remodeling company that services West Texas areas, including Abilene. The company was founded in 2003 and offers turnkey services. Aside from building barndominiums, SLS Enterprises also provides other services, like building home additions, custom kitchen cabinets, and handmade furniture. The company also builds patio covers, decks, and arbors. 

Kit Providers

Absolute Steel Texas

Absolute Steel Texas is one of the country’s leading manufacturers and suppliers of barndominium kits. Aside from barndominium kits, the company also fabricates kits for cabins, garages, agricultural buildings, and commercial buildings. The company has a wide variety of floor plans you can choose from to ensure that you have a barndominium that meets your needs. Absolute Steel Texas supplies kits to all 50 states. 

Metal Buildings of Texas

We’ve mentioned that Metal Buildings of Texas is one of the top barndominium builders in West Texas, but they are also trusted suppliers of barndominium kits. If you want to work with a local contractor, you can order a barndominium kit from Metal Buildings of Texas. If you are planning a DIY build, you can order the kit from them, and they will also handle the installation, so all you need to take care of is applying the finishing touches. 

Worldwide Steel Buildings

Worldwide Steel Buildings is a company that ships barndominium kits not just to customers within the United States but also to those in other countries. They have a wide variety of floor plans, so you can get a kit with the right size and exact features you need. The company offers a 50-year structural warranty for their kits, so you know you are getting products built to last. 

Buildmax

Buildmax is an architectural design company that also sells barndominium kits. The company services the entire United States. Aside from their numerous stock floor plans, Buildmax also customizes floor plans upon customer request.  

Things to Consider Before Building a Barndominium in West Texas

Before building a barndominium in West Texas, there are some things you need to consider to make your project successful. 

One of the most important considerations is the size and shape of your lot. Choose a floor plan that maximizes your land while leaving enough outdoor space for future expansion. 

Set a budget for your build and stick with it. This will help you avoid overextending and straining your financial resources. Ask your builder for tips on saving money without sacrificing your barndo’s quality. 

Your location is also important if you want to make your barndo safe. For example, if you are in an area prone to wildfires, stick with metal sidings because they are more durable against fire. If you are in El Paso, consider having a barndo with a sloped roof since it won’t accumulate snow and is safer than a flat roof. 

Conclusion

West Texas is a wonderful area for building a barndominium. It has incredible natural surroundings for a healthy work-life balance. It has a low cost of living, so you can do more with your money. There are also excellent barndominium builders and kit suppliers in the area to help make sure that you have a beautiful and durable barndominium. Remember to follow our Facebook page for more features about interesting buildings like shouses, shipping container homes, and pole barn homes.