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All About Post Frame Homes

All About Post Frame Homes

What Are the Framing Types?

When it comes to building a home, there are 3 major building types: Stick, Post, and Steel. Stick frame homes are the “traditional” way of building a home and are the most common type of builds you will see. Post frame homes are another option, though many people know them as pole barns. The third option for build is using steel frame. In this case, the shell of the home (also known as the shell) uses steel beams while the interior is usually still stick.

What Should I Know About Post Frame Builds?

When it comes to the foundation for post frame homes, typically there is a slab using sturdi brackets, or you can have posts in the ground using post protectors and sometimes posts or laminated columns are placed in a 4’ hole with a gravel or concrete pill base. Post frame homes use lumber to build, but instead of the traditional lumber that is seen in stick frames, post frames tend to use thicker posts like 3 ply 2 x 6’s or 2×8’s. A skirt board is placed on the outside of the columns and a slab can be poured which will fill the holes. This can allow for a sturdier build and can use less concrete in the foundation. With post frame homes, there are typically posts every 8’ on center but it can span up to 10’ on center. There are girts to hold the siding between the posts. A girt is a horizontal member the runs between the posts and these are typically around 2’ to 4’ apart. There are other supporting members involved as well that are called “purlins.” Purlins on the roof tie in the trusses and hold the metal roofing on. Trusses are typically triangular in shape and are made of several members, such as beams. Trusses are commonly used for the roof framing, but another place where you’ll see trusses are on bridges. If you’re new to the home building scene, don’t let all these words intimidate you; it’s a lot to take in! What is post frame construction? In short it’s a method of building that uses posts or columns as the exterior frame of the house.

5 bedroom barndominium design

What Are the Pros of Building a Post Frame Barndominium?

After hearing all the technical terms, you might be wondering what the advantages are of building a post frame home as opposed to a traditional stick built home. Here are a few pros of post frame homes:

  1. In most post frame builds, metal siding is used. With metal siding, there is lower maintenance as opposed to something like vinyl. Metal siding comes in many different colors so it can fit whatever style you’re going for.

2. Post frame homes have better energy efficiency. This comes from the spacing between posts, which leaves greater space for insulation and ultimately lesser heat transfer.

3. Post frame homes are typically sturdier than stick frame homes. This comes from the posts being installed in concrete as opposed to just sitting on it.

4. Post frame homes are great for open floor plans. This is because they don’t require load-bearing walls on the interior like a stick frame does.

5. Post frame homes can be built more quickly. You have fewer building materials using posts for the shell, so you’ll see a decrease in the time it will take to get it done.

6. Amish built 3 ply laminated columns with a 50 year warranty and Amish built trusses.

What Are the Cons?

Hearing the pros to building this style likely has you wondering what cons are. Once you see both, you’ll be able to determine if build post frame is right for you. Here are some of the cons:

  1. Post frame homes can be more expensive. You might be asking yourself “if post frame homes use fewer materials, how can it be more expensive?” Well, the reason this is the case is because using thicker lumber raises the price. Ultimately, it’ll depend on your design as that can make a big difference.

2. You may run into issues with permitting depending on the location of your build. This is because some areas don’t allow post frame builds.

3. Some lenders will not approve for a post frame build. The reason for this is that they may not know how to value the home or they may require you to answer more questions regarding the details of the build. Because of the difficulty with getting financing, you’ll also likely find it difficult to sell your home for the same reason.

barndominium framing

So Why Should I Go With Post Frame?

After seeing both the pros and cons of building a post frame home, you might be wondering why you would choose a post frame as opposed to a stick or metal home. While the cons may seem intimidating, the pros can make a big difference. The cons may not even apply to depending on where you live and what design you’re going with. Before you make a decision, you should always check what is required by seeing your local building department. If you are looking for more information on pole barn kits we have an article in our blog that can help.

As a Internet visionary in the early 2000’s, Tony has developed several successful web-based homebuilding companies assisting thousands of families across the nation. He has been married to his high school sweetheart Arlene for 40 years. They live in rural Kentucky near their two adult children and four grandchildren.
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We are super excited with results and service. Tony offered really helpful suggestions. Our dream build was pretty complicated but he and his designer were able to meet our needs.

James B

Recent Client