Pole Building Plans, Choices To Make When Building A Pole Barn
Before spending too much time looking at pole building plans, it is good to have a firm grasp on what you are looking for. Building a pole barn is likely to be one of the largest expenses of your lifetime. There are lots of decisions to make during the planning process, so it deserves the time and effort required to make the right choices.
Pole buildings have a lot of advantages over other types of structures. They are one of the least expensive ways to build a garage. They are easier and quicker to build than a conventional stick-frame structure, and use less material.
Pole barns don't usually have a concrete footer (although they can), and there is less lumber required for the framing. There are fewer breaks in the insulation than with a stick frame design, and most pole building plans are easily expandable later.
The first step in selecting pole building plans is to define your needs. What exactly do you want the new space to do for you? Do you need a garage just for parking, or will it be used as a workshop too? Do you need a concrete floor, or will a dirt or gravel floor work just as well? How big does it need to be, and do you have enough space on your property for it? Keep in mind that no matter how big you make it, it will likely never be "big enough"!
Once you have answered some of the big questions, it is time to start thinking about the details. Will the space need to be heated and/or cooled, requiring insulation? Will you need water and sewer? How many doors do you need, and of what type? What will the electrical requirements be, and how far away is the nearest electrical connection point? Most pole barns are built with a metal roof, but would you rather use shingles that match your home?
You also will need to decide what type of siding you want to use. The most popular choice is steel, but a pole building can be built with almost any type of siding: wood, vinyl, stucco, stone, and even log siding can be used on some designs.
Pole Barn Garage 3D Model
There are tons of free pole barn plans available on the internet, but few (if any) of the free plans are complete enough or detailed enough for you to start building from. Check with your local building authorities to find out what is required. Many areas require blueprints to be approved by an engineer or architect in order for you to get a permit.
The pole building design will have to meet the snow and wind load requirements for your part of the country. Many of the free pole building plans would have to be completely redone to meet code. You may be better off in the long run to pay for pole building plans that are designed from the beginning to meet your local codes.
That being said, the free plans out there still have value. You can learn a lot from studying the different free pole building designs. They will introduce you to all the available options and help you decide what you like and don't like. I recommend spending some time looking at the free pole barn plans before purchasing a set of blueprints.
There are several excellent resources you can use when doing your research. Some state and university websites have free pole barn plans available for download. A variety of designs are available at:
- University of Tennessee - Knoxville
- Iowa State University
- North Dakota State University
*NOTE: I just added a page with a directory of Free Pole Barn Plans. There you can find a list of the individual plans that are available, with a quick description of each one.
A lot of great information can also be found on the All Purpose Buildings website. They have several online tools available for calculating the material requirements for pole barns. Make sure you take a look at their "Pole Building Construction Guide". It is a free downloadable e-book with lots of illustrations and information that will really open your eyes to what is involved in building a pole barn.
Another good resource is on the Hansen Buildings website. They have a Planning Guide that gives you a step by step checklist for gathering the information required when building a pole barn.
Get 61 different barn plans for only $29.00!
Whatever pole building plans you choose, make sure you have decided ahead of time exactly what you want to use the space for and that you have included some wiggle room for extra "stuff"; pole buildings tend to fill up quickly! Also make sure the plans you are getting will meet your local codes. Talk to your local codes office and ask for their advice before buying any blueprints.
Before making any decisions, I would also recommend that you take a look at some pole building kits. A kit can offer a lot of value and save you a bunch of time and headache. Visit my page on Pole Barn Kits for information on the different types of pole building kits that are available. For information on different sizes of buildings, take a look at our Related Pages menu on the right near the top of this page.
The best advice I can give is to look at lots of different pole building plans before you choose. Contact your local building codes and permit agency to find out what the snow and wind load requirements are for your area, and make sure that any pole building plans you are getting will meet those specifications.
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