From Start to Finish: How Long Does It Take to Build a Barndominium? | A Detailed Breakdown

How Long Does It Take to Build a Barndominium

Barndominiums take an average of six months to build, from the start of construction to handing over the keys. Hiring a builder; choosing a floor plan or designing your own; estimating how much your barndominium costs; securing funding and choosing the right insurance, and finalizing a schedule can also take time. You may also experience delays, such as waiting for materials to arrive or a subcontractor to complete a job.

Here is a closer look if you wonder- how long does it take to build a barndominium?

Building a Barndominium Involves Multiple Stages

Barndominiums take less time to build compared to standard homes. While you can typically build a barndominium in six months, the average house takes up to nine months to complete.

The main stages involved in the construction process include:

  • Site preparation
  • Foundation
  • Rough framing
  • Interior framing
  • Mechanical and electrical systems
  • Insulation and drywall
  • Flooring
  • Landscaping

Throughout the construction process, you are waiting for the completion of one stage before starting the next. For example, you cannot start on the frame until you lay the foundation. A delay during any stage delays the rest of the work.

The timeframe also depends on whether you hire a builder or build it yourself. If you act as the owner-contractor, you can complete some of the stages yourself and hire subcontractors for the areas where you lack experience. Completing some of the stages yourself may save time, but also involves more work.

Prepare the Site

After obtaining building permits, preparing the site is the first stage of construction. Site preparation involves the removal of trees, vegetation, rocks, and other types of debris. The land may also require leveling.

Clearing the lot and prepping the site typically takes about a week. The time needed to clear the area where you want to build depends on the amount of work involved. If the lot is covered in trees and bushes, the process may take a little longer.

construction site preparation

Lay the Foundation

Laying the foundation for a barndominium may take two to four weeks. You first need to build a form to hold the poured concrete in place. The form typically consists of wood beams and reinforcing bars (rebars).

The concrete is poured into the frame and smoothed using various techniques. You must then wait for the concrete to cure. The concrete reaches about 70% of its full strength after seven days. However, you may need to wait up to 28 days before building the frame.

Complete the Rough Framing

The rough framing of the barndominium includes the frame, subfloors, outer walls, siding, and roofing. Completing the rough framing is where you save more time compared to building a traditional house. Rough framing often takes about two months for a standard house. Building the exterior of the barndominium may take just a few weeks.

Most barndominiums are built using steel frames while traditional houses are built using wood frames with studs. Stud frames include more parts, requiring more work.

Erecting the frame also requires the most manpower. If you plan on building the barndominium yourself, you will likely need more help with this stage compared to the other stages of construction.

Frame the Interior of the Barndominium

The interior of the barndominium is framed using many of the same steps involved in framing a standard house. Both types of homes have stud frames throughout the interior. Most barndominiums also include wood framing along the outer perimeter that is mounted to the metal frame.

Interior framing may take three to four weeks, depending on the size of the barndominium. A 1,000-square-foot barndominium involves much less work compared to 2,000-square-foot home. Barndominiums with second floors or mezzanine areas may also increase the timeframe.

Install the Mechanical and Electrical Systems

After framing the interior, subcontractors install the major mechanical and electrical systems. Electrical wiring, telephone lines, and plumbing are installed in the wall cavities and frames. HVAC systems are also installed during this stage. This includes the furnace, water heater, and air conditioner unit.

You typically need to schedule inspections after the electrical and HVAC work is completed. The timeframe for this stage depends on the building schedule, as you need to coordinate with electricians, plumbers, HVAC companies, and inspectors.

Add Insulation and Drywall

insulation and dry wall installation

Adding the insulation and drywall may take one to three weeks, depending on the size of the property and the type of insulation. If you want to add spray foam or blown-in insulation, you hang the drywall first. Otherwise, you can add blanket insulation or rigid board before drywalling.

If you hire a building company, the interior walls may be painted with a white primer after the drywall and insulation are completed. Light fixtures, light switches, and other finishing touches can also be completed at this stage.

Install the Flooring

The flooring is typically completed after most of the major interior projects are finished. As with the previous stages, the amount of time depends on the square footage of your barndominium. Some flooring projects may take a single day while others can take a week.

Complete the Landscaping

Building a barndominium involves the use of heavy equipment that can damage lawns, which is why you wait until after construction to complete the landscaping. The most basic landscaping includes preparing the yard and laying grass seed. Adding topsoil and seed may only take a day or two, depending on the size and condition of the land.

You may also want to add a driveway, walkways, patios, and other outdoor features. Each of these features may add several more days of work.


Summary: How Long Does It Take to Build a Barndominium?

Building a barndominium includes many of the same stages used for constructing a standard house. However, you can typically build a barndominium faster.

Most barndominiums are built within six months while standard houses can take up to nine months to complete. Waiting for the foundation to cure and completing the rough framing are the steps that tend to take the longest.

Yet, the time needed to build a barndominium also depends on scheduling. You need to coordinate with a variety of subcontractors to complete various areas of the home.

Completing some of the work yourself may save time by limiting the need for subcontractors. However, hiring a reliable contractor or building company can ensure that your barndominium is well-built and completed within a set timeframe.