Can You Build a Barndominium In a Cold Climate? | 6 Important Things To Consider

Building a barndominium is a great way to get everything you want from a custom home. With the availability of materials and easy construction, barndos are a great alternative house. However, you might be wondering if a barndominium is right for your area? Knowing about whether or not you can build a barndominium in a cold climate can help. 

If you want to build a barndominium in a cold climate, it is a good idea to be informed. Knowing everything about what you need to consider can help you make the right decision. While it is absolutely possible to build a barndominium in a cold climate, there are things to know. In this article, we have laid out all the different aspects of one of these builds that should be included.

What to Consider to Build a Barndominium in a Cold Climate 


Perhaps the most important thing to think about is how you are going to insulate your barndominium. Barndominiums are framed on the inside just like traditional homes. However, the exterior shell is drafty and won’t be as well-sealed as a house frame. Because of this, insulation will play a large part in how well the barndo does in cold weather. 

barndominium in a cold climate

There are generally two types of insulation used in barndominiums: Open-cell foam and closed-cell foam. While open-cell foam insulation is a little cheaper, it doesn’t offer the same level of protection.

If you live in a particularly cold area, closed-cell foam insulation is a better choice. It will give you a much higher level of insulation and keep your home warm in the winter. 

Open Floor Plan 

If you are going to build a barndominium in a cold climate, it is best to have an open floor plan. An open floor plan means that you don’t have a lot of walls in the home and that everything is very open. This is especially apparent in the living room and kitchen. These two spaces are not separated by a wall with an open floor plan and will instead be in the same space. 

One of the reasons why using an open floor plan in the cold is a good idea is for efficiency. If your home has fewer walls and small spaces, it will be much easier to heat. Having everything in one area means that no heat will be lost and that all of it will stay in one spot. This will help make your home better suited for cold climates. 


If you want to build a barndominium in a cold climate, it is very important that you consider location. Where your barndominium is located will dictate how well it holds up in the snow and cold. When talking about location, it doesn’t mean the city or county but where on the property it is built. If you have a lot of options on your plot of land, choosing an ideal position will help. 

Barndominium Nebraska

If possible, look at the location of the sun during the winter on your property. Find out what location gets the most sun during the colder months and build your barndo there. This will help your home absorb as much heat as possible and help save you money on heat. If the barndo is well-insulated, you won’t lose as much heat and can run your HVAC less. 

Radiant Heat Flooring 

One of the nice things about building a barndominium in a cold climate is that they are well-suited for it. Barndominiums are built on concrete slab foundations instead of traditional foundations with crawl spaces. Because of this, they are perfect for using radiant heat as a heating option. The fact that the concrete slab is already going is a great opportunity for this type of HVAC. 

Radiant heating is a type of heating that uses pipes with water that is warmed up. This water is pumped through the pipes, which are installed on the concrete floor. Much like a radiator, this type of heating is very efficient and runs throughout the whole home. This is your best bet if you want to build a barndominium in a cold climate. 

Sealed Exterior 

If you are going to build a barndominium in a cold climate, you will need to make sure it is sealed. While you will need to insulate your barndo, doing a sealing job throughout is also important. This means ensuring that your windows and doors are sealed and have all the proper hardware. This aspect of the build should be done during the construction process. 

barndominium in a cold climate

For the most part, your home will be well-sealed if it is properly built. Putting in the doors and windows correctly will give you the right amount of air tightness for your heating. Not only will this help keep the cold out, but it will also keep the heat in. This will save you money in the long run and keep you and your family comfortable. 

Ceiling Fans 

While it may seem counterintuitive, ceiling fans are a great way to keep your barndo warm. Most barndominiums have high, vaulted ceilings. This means that they can get heat trapped high up, where it won’t keep you warm. Ceiling fans can help push that warm air down and help your home run more efficiently. 

Anywhere you have high ceilings, it will be difficult to keep the heat down on the ground. Since heat rises naturally, having the fans is a great way to get the most out of your HVAC. If you decide to use a radiant heating system, this won’t be as important. 


If you are looking to build a barndominium in a cold climate, it is best to think ahead. Knowing what it takes to build an efficient and comfortable barndo can help you plan correctly, especially with the right materials and costs. With the right equipment and preparation, your barndo will be comfortable no matter what. 

If you would like more guides like this one, be sure to check out the rest of There, you will find more helpful tips and tricks, especially on barndominium financing and insurance, from the pros. You will also find floor plans, and design software for your barndominium plan. These will help you get inspired and get you thinking about your own custom dream home.