Everything You Need to Think About Before Settling on A Kit
If you feel confident in your DIY abilities, and you want the satisfaction of bringing your pole barn, garage, storage building, or workshop to life yourself, then you may be interested in purchasing a pole building kit.
In other words, you might be wondering whether you can simply buy the plans and materials for your building without paying for any assistance on the labor side. The short answer is yes, but there are many details to consider before diving into a DIY build—we’ve outlined the important considerations below.
How Much Does A Kit Cost?
Our post on how much a pole building costs lays out some price ranges for kits:
- $19,600-$25,200 for a small pole building (500-800 square feet)
- $25,200-$44,800 for a medium pole building (800-2,000 square feet)
- $44,800-$189,000 for a large pole building (2,000-10,000 square feet)
That includes all of the materials necessary for construction (without accessories or concrete footings), as well as engineered plans. For reference, this medium-sized pole building that we built for a customer cost approximately $30,000 including labor, so a kit is not always more cost effective when you look at the big picture.
Are Kits Easy to Buy?
This is a slightly loaded question because, on the one hand, there are a number of different national and local businesses (including Beehive) that offer pole building kits. On the other hand, not all kit companies provide engineered plans which are necessary to obtain a building permit that will be required in most areas. Before ordering a kit, check with your governing city/county to determine if a building permit is required and then be sure to buy a kit that comes with engineered plans. Beehive Buildings’ building kits all come with a set of engineered plans.
What Skills Are Necessary to Build A DIY Pole Building?
If you have experience, it’s not unrealistic that you could construct a pole building yourself because these buildings are less labor-intensive than other types of structures. However, there are still certain abilities that you’ll need to have in order to effectively construct your building.
Although pole buildings do not require extensive excavation, you will still have to complete pad prep, so you will need to remove all organic material, make sure the site is level within a couple of inches, and compact any engineered fill material 6 inches at a time.
From there, you will need to be able to auger holes, set poles, frame the structure, raise the roof trusses, hang metal, and more.
Beyond these physical aspects, you’ll also have to take care of the official facets, such as applying for the permit and scheduling inspections. If you plan to add any accessories to your building (including a concrete floor or windows), you will need to make sure that you have developed a relationship with suppliers that you trust.
Top 4 Things to Think About Before Buying A Kit
For some people, purchasing a kit is the right decision; to know whether it’s the right move for you, ask yourself these questions.
How Tight Is My Budget?
As you can see based on the price comparison we made above, you may not end up saving all that much money by choosing a kit. This is because pole buildings aren’t very labor intensive, so you might not end up saving as much as you think by taking on the construction yourself.
However, you will still save some money by handling all of the labor on your own, so if you’re working with a very tight budget, then a kit will help you trim a little bit of excess cost out of your project total.
How Much Time Do I Have Available to Dedicate to This Project?
Obviously, if you choose to purchase a kit rather than hire a contractor, you’ll have to personally dedicate much more time to the building process.
Make sure to consider how much time you have available to spend on construction, as well as how quickly you’re hoping to finish your building.
It’s also important to think about how valuable your time is to you. That is to say, you should do some math on how many hours you think you’ll dedicate to constructing your building, and compare that with what (if anything) you will end up saving by making it a DIY project. In the end, you may find that you would have to dedicate far too much time for far too little savings if you choose a kit.
How Comfortable Am I with Post Frame Construction?
If you weren’t fairly confident in your ability to construct a pole building, chances are you wouldn’t be considering buying a kit at all, but it’s still worth asking yourself if you’re truly capable of handling the entire construction process from start to finish on your own.
What Accessories Am I Hoping to Add?
Many kits only come with the materials you need to build the pole building itself, and not any accessories. This means that if you’re looking to include anything extra at all, you’ll need to plan to obtain it and install it yourself, which equals additional cost and labor for you.
For some, a kit is a great option that comes with the satisfaction of knowing that they built something themselves. For others, simply enlisting the help of a pole building contractor is a better route.
Now that you have more information on pole building kits and the factors that go into choosing whether or not you should buy one, contact us to discuss which option is right for you!
Do you build/erect your pole barns in California? Thanks in advance for any information you can provide, much appreciated.
Unfortunately, we don’t build in California. We currently build in Utah, Idaho, and Wyoming.