Building vs. Buying
According to nationally compiled data, the cost to build a mini-barn of your own can range from about $1500 to $15,000. Much of the cost is determined by the materials you choose and whether you build from a kit or with raw materials. The consideration isn't just the materials. Customers should consider the time investment and whether or not they will need the assistance of a contractor and/or architect.
It is also important to consider what its uses will be. This will make weighing options easier.
Will this mini-barn be used as a workshop, for simple storage, office or relaxation space? If storage or office, does the equipment kept there need electricity or climate control?
These are all integral questions when considering the type of storage to add to a property.
Traditionally, mini-barns and backyard sheds are places to keep garden tools and lawn equipment. More and more these buildings are becoming spaces for a mini-retreat (see the “man-cave and she-shed” craze) or work space outside of the home.
The prices go up as the amenities like additional doors, windows, shelving or ramps.
With any rent-to-own program including barns, It’s important to find what fits your needs, however specific they may be. For example, with the popularity of “man” caves and “she” sheds, rent-to-own mini barns could provide a feasible route to expanding your home's footprint without expanding your actual home and getting involved in fees that expand to include extra laborers and contractors.
These month-to-month options, while slightly increasing the price of the barn, deliver a high return for little risk. Often the finishes and amenities offered in rent-to-own make this slow purchase option attractive for folks who desire more from their new shed or mini-barns. Many of the rent-to-own barns and lofted mini barns can be custom built to the customers satisfaction. If a customer needs the barn long term, the rent-to-own option offers them time and if they only need it for six months, or a year, they only pay for the time they use. If a customer is in a plan, they do have the option to do an early pay and buy the barn outright. This could save them some money.
Back in early 2000, Miller’s Mini Barns saw a need to provide unique alternatives for customers to acquire custom storage sheds. Since that time, over 50 percent of our mini-barn purchases have been via our rent-to-own program. We pride ourselves on providing service and flexibility to our most valuable asset, our loyal customers.
What do customers need to do to prepare?
When installing a mini-barn, it is important that the customer, first, has relatively flat available space. There are several ways to prepare that space. For some customers, placing a building can be done on concrete blocks with minor leveling done onsite.
Other options include:
Gravel Pads which provide a good porous option for placing the building. These can be placed above ground or nested at ground level. Be sure to allow for space that is longer and wider than the barn itself. This type of foundation could allow vegetation growth and will need some minor upkeep as long as the barn is there.
Treated wood skids are another cost-effective option but will need to be placed in areas with less moisture to avoid damage to this type of foundation. This type of foundation will require inspection and maintenance as time goes on.
Piers. If you have a sloped yard or water issues, raising the foundation of the barn off the ground could be a useful option. Pier foundations are often a combination of concrete and wood construction. This can provide a strong base for your building but will require periodic maintenance to keep it looking nice and supporting the building firmly.
Concrete foundation. This is certainly a more expensive option than the others but it can provide a stable placement with minimal upkeep. Using a good contractor to prepare the concrete site can ensure the site is level and square enough to accommodate your new rent-to-own mini barn.
It's important for customers to navigate the process of getting a mini-barn carefully, but just as important is to know the options available such as rent-to-own or other financing options. A mini-barn could add the square footage and amenities missing from your home without breaking the budget in architectural and contractor fees.