As much as we love and advocate for Barndominium living, it is important to note that living in a barn is not for everyone. Which begs the question: Is Barndo living for you?
Practical functionality, a gathering space, a “lived in” feeling, and perfect imperfections. As custom builds, Barndos are great for tailoring your home to you. You can add any features you like and really make it your own. Many Barndo lovers include workshops attached to their homes. Whether it’s a man cave, she shed, or joint venture – if you like or have always wanted to have your own workshop/space, craft area, or multi-purpose office, a Barndo is probably a great fit for you! Barndos lend themselves well to creating that additional work area, either in the main Barndo or in a separate one designated specifically as a workshop, craft room, or office. You can use durable materials, build the space out to support your needs, and will have plenty of space for storage and doing what you love or need to do.
Credit: Forbes.com Laundry Rooms That Redefine Wash Day
A Barndo is the ultimate gathering space. Although we think of barns as being for horses (and there are horse Barndos too), they are wonderful places to bring people together. The high ceilings and wide open spaces allow you to host plenty of family and friends without the room feeling stuffy or claustrophobic. The kitchen and living room blend into one ultra large, inviting room and, with the right design, can flow seamlessly into your outdoor spaces.
Plus, wide open spaces make it easy to adjust the furniture layout to accommodate an extra-long table at Thanksgiving dinner or to make space to pull out the ping pong table.
Another sign that a Barndo is good for you is if you are comfortable with a bit of dust and a lived-in look. Barndominiums are ideal for country life because they are not meant to be pristine. Since Barndos are usually wide open and made with durable materials, they tolerate a mess and daily life a lot better than other homes. What would normally look like a ton of clutter in a more closed off house, looks less cluttered in a Barndo because it’s in a large open space. In a Barndo, your floors are probably easy to clean, so it’s ok if the dogs come barreling through the door with their muddy paws – it’s an easy fix with the push of a broom or a shop vac.
Your countertops can handle the spills, the hot pots, and the accidental slip off a knife off the cutting board.
Metal exteriors are durable exteriors are durable and don’t need constant maintenance. The beauty of a Barndo is that it can take some wear and tear and still look great at the end of the day.
Finally, we genuinely believe Barndos are most perfect when they are imperfect. Oftentimes, Barndominium owners are people who love to be creative with their homes and even do the occasional DIY home project. From our own experience, we built parts of our Barndo, which was so rewarding. And we aren’t perfect, so there’s a wallboard slightly out of place here and there, and the stained wood on the walls lack factory-grade uniformity. But our home is better with these imperfections. These details give it character and remind us of the work we put into it ourselves to realize our dream. If you do build a Barndo, we would highly recommend taking the opportunity to put at least a little of your own labor into your project because it makes the finished product even more meaningful and saves you money.
Credit: Annette Bell
If you like segmented floor plans, defined spaces, and every exterior finish except metal roofing & siding – a Barndo may not be for you.
Consider your personal style. Barndo living is probably not for you if you love homes made of stucco, brick, or stone. It is certainly possible to finish your Barndominium with any kind of facade you like. Usually, however, if you want your home to feature stucco, brick, or stone exteriors, you most likely are drawn to a different style.
Also, a Barndo is not for you if you like a more segmented floor plan. By design, Barndominiums are usually open and do not feature as many dividing walls as conventional construction. We love this open look, but some people want their spaces to be more clearly defined. Again, this is possible in a Barndominium, but it defeats the purpose of Barndo design.
Then, there are also some other minor things that some people don’t like about Barndos. Barndominiums often have metal roofs and exterior walls. If you don’t like the soft sound of rain on your roof, you may want to avoid a Barndo. If you are worried about doing a little regular maintenance or don’t like the boxy look of a Barndo, then you should consider a different style of home.
We are a fan of polished concrete floors, and they blend perfectly in any Barndo. Many Barndo owners opt for this floor finishing because of its aesthetic look and cost savings. However, over time – know that you will begin to see finer line cracks form… I say it adds character. But if that bothers you – then this Barndo floor may not be for you.
When it comes down to it, we believe, Barndos are for people who are unafraid to embrace all the beauty and the mess this wonderful life has to offer.
If you like the Barndo style, want to host family and friends, and need your house to be able to handle some wear and tear because you’re doing a whole lot of living in it, a Barndo is likely a great home for you.
And if this does describe you, check out our floor plans at https://ourbarndominiumlife.com/floor-plans/ and our “BarnHouse” Style section for some ideas on how to build and design your Barndo!