How much does it cost to build a pole barn?
How much does it cost to build a pole barn?
$15 – $40 cost per square foot installed
$18,000 – $48,000 average cost for a 30x40 pole barn
$36,000 – $96,000 average cost for a 40x60 pole barn
Cost to build a pole barn by size
A pole barn costs $15 to $40 per square foot to build. A 30’ x 40’ pole barn costs $18,000 to $48,000. Pole barn garage prices are $3,800 to $24,000+. Adding electricity, plumbing, and interior finishes for a pole barn house increases costs by $35 to $110 per square foot or more.
|Size||Square feet||Average cost||Typical use|
|16x16||256||$3,800 – $10,200||1-car garage, 1-horse barn|
|20x20||400||$6,000 – $16,000||1 or 2-car garage, 2-horse barn, 30 bales of hay|
|20x30||600||$9,000 – $24,000||1 or 2-car garage, 2-horse barn, 50 bales of hay|
|24x24||576||$8,600 – $23,000||1 or 2-car garage, 2-horse barn|
|30x30||900||$13,500 – $36,000||3-car garage, small retail space, 4-horse barn|
|30x40||1,200||$18,000 – $48,000||8-horse stall, small retail space, 100 bales of hay|
|30x50||1,500||$22,500 – $60,000||4-car garage, 125 bales of hay, 10 horse stable|
|30x60||1,800||$27,000 – $72,000||6-car garage, machine shop, 12-horse barn|
|36x36||1,296||$19,500 – $52,000||100 bales of hay, 8 horse stable|
|36x50||1,800||$27,000 – $72,000||Multi-office unit, auto or tractor workshop|
|40x40||1,600||$24,000 – $64,000||10 horse stall, 130 bales of hay|
|40x50||2,000||$30,000 – $80,000||150 bales of hay, 12 horse barn|
|40x60||2,400||$36,000 – $96,000||200 bales of hay, industrial workshop|
|40x80||3,200||$48,000 – $128,000||250 bales of hay, 20 horse barn, a 2-bedroom house|
|50x80||4,000||$60,000 – $160,000||12-car garage, 2 or 3-bedroom house|
|50x100||5,000||$75,000 – $200,000||3-bedroom house, 400 bales of hay|
|60x80||4,800||$72,000 – $192,000||Industrial machine shop or warehouse|
|60x90||5,400||$81,000 – $216,000||450 bales of hay, 4-bedroom house, 35-horse barn|
|60x100||6,000||$90,000 – $240,000||Commercial warehouse / horse riding arena|
Average pole barn cost per square foot
Pole barn materials make up 65% to 75% of the total project cost, while construction labor makes up the remainder.
|Factor||Cost per square foot|
|Materials or kit shell||$10 – $30|
|Construction labor||$5 – $10|
|Total cost to build||$15 – $40|
Pole barn kits & materials
A pole barn kit costs $10 to $30 per square foot or $12,000 to $36,000 for a 30'x40' shell, not including assembly. The prepackaged kit has everything you need to build the pole barn including:
Lumber or steel posts
Metal roofing, siding, and trim pieces
Precast footers or concrete mix for larger buildings
Blueprints and detailed drawings for assembly
Any windows and doors included with the package
Custom accessories like cupolas or wainscot
Pole barn labor cost per square foot
The labor cost to build a pole barn averages $5 to $10 per square foot to construct the exterior shell only. Most pole barn companies offer professional installation within their service area.
Consider hiring a general contractor, construction manager, or structural engineer for large projects or pole barn houses.
A general contractor costs $50 to $150 per hour to manage the entire project, including site prep, assembly, installation, and interior finishing.
A structural engineer costs $100 to $220 per hour to ensure the proper structural support and snow load capacity are met if you are modifying a pole barn kit.
Metal vs. wood pole barn frame costs
Metal pole barn frames are more expensive to build but less expensive to own than wooden pole barns when you consider the ongoing maintenance a wood pole barn requires. Wood pole barns are easily damaged by moisture, pests, and fire. Metal pole barns are basically maintenance-free.
Pole barn cost estimator by type
|Type||Average total cost|
|Pole shed||$3,000 – $8,000|
|Pole barn garage||$9,000 – $36,000|
|Pole barn with living quarters||$30,000 – $120,000|
|Complete pole barn house||$120,000 – $300,000|
Pole shed cost
A pole shed costs $3,000 to $8,000 to build a small storage space with a pre-cut material kit. In comparison, the cost to build a standard shed is $1,500 to $15,000, depending on the size. Installing a shed without a concrete slab or flooring keeps costs down.
Pole barn garage prices
A simple 2-car pole barn garage costs $6,000 to $23,000. In comparison, the cost to build a standard 2-car garage is $19,600 to $28,200. Pole barn kits use pre-cut materials that are faster and easier to install, meaning you’ll spend less on labor.
Cost to build a pole barn with living quarters
Building a pole barn with living quarters costs $30,000 to $120,000, depending on the size. Adding a finished apartment to a pole barn costs $30 to $110 per square foot of living space. The finished living space adds value to the home and creates a potential rental income stream.
Adding a kitchen space to a pole barn apartment includes costs for:
Kitchen cabinets cost $150 to $500 per linear foot installed.
New countertops cost $50 to $150 per square foot on average installed, depending on the material.
Laminate flooring costs $4 to $14 per square foot.
Building a complete pole barn house
Building a complete pole barn house costs $120,000 to $300,000 for a finished, 2,400-square-foot home with posts spaced 8 to 12 feet apart and anchored in the ground.
The cost to build a barndominium is $150,000 to $315,000 for a finished, 2,000-square-foot, steel-frame building with thick columns spaced 12 to 20 feet apart and mounted to a concrete foundation.
Finishing costs to build a pole barn
Post-frame buildings use posts that are sunk and anchored deep in the ground without needing a foundation. If you plan to live or work in the space, expect to pay an additional $35 to $110 per square foot to prep the site, pour a concrete slab, add utilities, and build-out the interior.
|Factor||Average cost for a 40' x 60' (2,400 SF) home||Percentage breakdown|
|Building shell||$24,000 – $72,000+||20%|
|Kit assembly and installation||$12,000 – $24,000||10%|
|Site prep||$3,000 – $30,000+||5% – 10%|
|Concrete slab foundation||$12,000 – $24,000||5% – 10%|
|Utilities(Plumbing, electric, water, sewer, HVAC)||$20,000 – $50,000+||15%|
|Interior finishing (Insulation, framing, drywall, flooring, etc.)||$50,000 – $160,000||40%|
|Permits||$500 – $2,000||< 1%|
|Total build costs (fully finished pole barn)||$120,000 – $360,000||100%|
Site prep and land clearing
The cost to prepare a site for a pole barn depends on the location and elevation of the property, type of granular fill, building pad size, and any tree removal needed. Site prep may include the following services:
A land survey costs $200 to $1,200.
Land clearing costs $1,200 to $3,700, depending on how heavily wooded the lot is.
Excavation costs $2.50 to $15.00 per cubic yard.
Land leveling or grading costs $0.40 to $2.00 per square foot.
Pole barn concrete floor cost
An optional pole barn concrete slab floor costs $5 to $10 per square foot installed, depending on the slab thickness and reinforcement.
Building permits cost $500 to $2,000 and are required for any construction project that includes a slab.
Roofing and siding
Roofing and siding for a pole barn are included in the pole barn kit. Post-frame construction without a prepackaged kit has added costs for roofing and siding, including:
Roof installation costs $3 to $6 per square foot for an asphalt shingle roof, while other materials like metal or wood shake typically cost more.
Windows and doors
Windows and doors for a pole barn are often included in the pole barn kit. If you're constructing a post-frame building without a kit, expect to pay these costs for windows and doors:
Window installation costs $150 to $1,000 per window for new construction.
Exterior door installation costs $300 to $1,900.
Interior door installation costs $225 to $825.
Skylight installation costs $1,600 to $4,200.
Pole building insulation & drywall
The costs to insulate and drywall a pole barn include:
Pole barn or metal building spray foam insulation costs $1.00 to $4.50 per square foot of surface area.
Interior framing costs $18 to $24 per linear foot of wall, not including insulation or drywall.
Drywall installation costs $1.50 to $3.50 per square foot of wall or ceiling surface area.
HVAC, electrical, and plumbing
Making a pole barn into a comfortable living space includes bringing in power, water, heating, and cooling. Costs depend on the access to local services and may include:
Service connections – Getting major utility services on the property costs $9,000 to $34,500 for electricity, water, gas, and septic services.
Septic – Installing a new septic tank system costs $3,280 to $5,040.
Sewer – Adding a new sewer line costs $30 to $110 per foot or $1000 to $4,300 for up to 40 feet, including excavation and backfill.
Installing a well costs $25 to $65 per foot to dig and install a new well.
Installing and connecting the water main to your home costs $1,700 to $3,000.
Plumbing – Installing rough-in plumbing pipes in new construction costs $2,280 to $5,120.
HVAC – A new HVAC costs $7,000 to $16,000 for a full system with ductwork.
Electric – Electrical wiring costs $6,000 to $22,500 for new construction.
Add-ons and interior finishes
The costs to finish the interior pole barn spaces may include:
Flooring installation costs $4 to $15 per square foot, depending on the material chosen.
Professional painting services cost $1 to $6 per square foot of wall or ceiling surface area.
Installing a light fixture costs $70 to $300 for each fixture, or about $3,000 for the entire home.
Landscaping costs $4 to $12 per square foot or $3,000 to $16,000 for a complete landscaping installation.
Adding a lean-to costs $15 to $19 per square foot, depending on whether you choose an open or enclosed addition.
DIY pole barn costs
A DIY pole barn costs $10 to $30 per square foot for a prepackaged materials kit, plus the cost of tools and equipment rentals to complete the project. Hiring a professional to install a pole barn is advised since the walls must be measured exactly to ensure a safe structure.
Pole building FAQs
Are pole barns worth the cost?
An unfinished pole barn doesn’t increase your property value, but the improved storage space makes your home more attractive to potential buyers. Expect a 50% to 80% return on investment (ROI) for a highly finished pole barn with flooring, insulation, and electricity.
What is the cheapest way to build a pole barn?
The cheapest way to build a pole barn is to forego a foundation, leave the interior unfinished, use a sliding rather than an overhead door, and eliminate unnecessary features like extra windows, porches, or upgraded siding.
What are standard pole barn sizes?
There is no standard pole barn size because the ideal size depends on the barn's purpose. Agricultural and commercial storefront pole barns tend to be larger than those for garages and storage sheds. The most common pole barn sizes are:
30' x 40'
40' x 60'
40' x 40'
40' x 80'
How long does it take to build a pole barn?
Building a pole barn takes from a few days to 6 weeks, depending on the barn type and the amount of site prep required.
How long do pole barns last?
Pole barns last 40 to 60 years on average. However, newer pole barns are made with stronger materials and better construction methods than previous barns and may last up to 100 years with proper care.
Who builds pole barns?
Building a pole barn with a pole barn kit can be a DIY job, but the smallest error in measurements can make the building unsafe. Hiring a professional pole barn builder or construction company ensures your pole barn is safely constructed, meets code, and will last for years to come.
Can you finance a pole barn?
Yes, you can finance a pole barn with a personal, construction, or home equity loan from a financial lender. Many pole barn construction companies also offer financing options. Be sure to compare the interest rates and down payments required by each lender.
Getting quotes from pole barn builders
When getting quotes from pole barn builders near you, here are some important tips to keep in mind:
Look for licensed, insured, and bonded builders.
Get at least three estimates with similar materials to compare.
Read their reviews on HomeGuide and Google.
Ask to visit them on the job site to see if their work is up to your standards.
Select a contractor that fits your budget and timeline.
Request a written contract that details the timeline, payment schedule, and warranty information.
Avoid paying in full or making large upfront deposits. Instead, follow a payment schedule with the last payment due upon project completion.
Questions to ask
Asking these questions can help you find the right pole barn builder:
Are you licensed, bonded, and insured?
How many pole barns have you built this year?
Where can I see examples of your work?
Do you offer a free estimate?
Who is responsible for obtaining the necessary permits?
How long will the pole barn take to install?
Does the estimate include site prep and cleanup?
How much of a deposit is required? What are the payment terms?
Do you offer extended-term financing?
Do you have a list of preferred lenders I can contact?