Top 12 Best Barndominium Books To Read (2024)

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If you’re planning to build a barndominium, you’re joining thousands of Americans making the choice for alternative housing.

Barndominiums offer many of the advantages of traditional housing but are faster, cheaper to build, and more durable.

Perks like lower maintenance costs, reduced maintenance requirements, and even 50+ year warranties on structural integrity are drawing prospective homeowners to these houses.

However, just because they offer advantages over traditional housing doesn’t mean they’re not complicated, expensive, and as much of an investment as any other type of new home. 

If you want to build a new home, you want to know everything there is to know about your building options, your structure, legal restrictions, and the process. You’re looking for a book about building barndominiums.

Luckily, there are plenty of them on the market, and the following includes 12 of the best options. 

1. How to Build Your Own Barndominium: From Blueprint to Dream Home (Michael Taylor)

How to Build Your Own Barndominium: From Blueprint to Dream Home by Michael Taylor is a comprehensive guide to planning, budgeting, financing, and constructing your own barndominium.

The book acts as a guide from the first point of decision, sharing different types of barndominiums, how structures work, and giving you in-depth information to make the right decisions for your home.

It’s also the newest book on this list, published at the end of 2023, and up to date with everything you need to make a decision around your barndominium construction. 

  • 164 pages 
  • Published in 2023

2. Barndominiums: Your Guide to a Perfect, Inexpensive Dream Home (Chris Peterson)

Christ Peterson’s “Barndominiums: Your Guide to a Perfect, Inexpensive Dream Home” is one of the most popular barndominium books published. It’s also available as an eBook or Hardcover book with information on what you need to decide to build a barndominium.

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The book is packed with photos and images to showcase what you can do with a barn.

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The book also focuses on converting an existing or old barn into a home. That makes it ideal if you already own a barn and want ideas on converting it. However, with some information on building new structures, you can get away with using it as a primer before buying a metal kit home as well.

This book is not about price efficiency despite the title and many readers do complain about the fact that it’s not focused on being inexpensive. However, you do get plenty of pictures and inspiration for your barn home. 

3. Barndominium Building for Beginners: The Step-by-Step Guide on How to Build Your Own Homemade Barndominium from Scratch (Boris Joseph)

Boris Joseph’s “Barndominium Building for Beginners” is a short-form guide to building a barndominium with simple steps.

The lack of detail means you can read it quickly as it’s just 57 pages. However, that also means you can quickly familiarize yourself with the process and decide if a barndominium is the way to go for you.

Many reviewers do complain, however, that the book is too short and too basic, so you probably don’t want it unless you’re trying to save yourself time on research or prefer a book to researching on the Internet.

In addition, it has no photos in the book so won’t be a good source of inspiration. Otherwise, Joseph’s book is one of the highest-rated barndominium books out there. It’s also available in paperback. 

  • 57 pages 
  • Published in 2022
  • Rating: 3.3 stars 

4. How To Build Your Barndominium (Ronnie Steiner)

How to Build Your Barndominium: The Complete Guide for Those Who Want to Build the Barn Home Of Their Dreams But Do Not Know Where to Start is one of the most popular self-help barndo books on the market.

It also has a step-by-step process going over points to consider when planning your barndominium. It’s also relatively short so easy to skim or a good first step if you’re not sure if you’re up for the barndo building process.

A lot of readers do complain that How to Build Your Barndominium assumes you’re paying subcontractors for everything and offers no guidance on any DIY work or how to get started with DIY.

The book also lacks photos, which means you won’t get any floor plans, ideas, or inspiration to get started. Otherwise, this is a great book to test if you’re ready for a barndo. 

  • 74 pages
  • Published 2022
  • Rating: 
    • 4.7 stars on Amazon
    • 2 stars on Goodreads
    • 3 stars on Walmart.com 

5. How to Build Your Barndominium: Learn the Procedures, Techniques, and Projects for Making a Modern, Comfortable, and Durable Barndo on a Budget (Marc Harret)

Marc Harret’s “How to Build your Barndominium” covers all of the steps to getting started building a barndominium. It also takes a DIY approach, with information you need to get started including permits, licensing, and more.

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The book takes the approach of a checklist, focusing on giving you the basic information you need to get started pared down to minimal format. This includes what to avoid, what to look for, and what to choose in terms of material and builder options.

Here, you might prefer a book that contains fewer checklists and bullet points. Reviewers also complain that it’s been poorly edited, but if you can get around a few typos, the book is a good checklist of options and what you can do as an approach. 

  • 98 pages
  • Published in 2023
  • Ratings: 4.1 stars 

6. How to Build Your Barndominium: The Ultimate Guide to Design and Build Your Dream Barn-Home. Expert Tips, Cost-Saving Strategies, and Step-by-Step Plans (Joseph Miller)

Joseph Miller’s “How to Build Your Barndominium” is a thorough guide to planning, budgeting, and getting started with your barndominium build.

It covers concepts like planning your budgeting and costs, financing, planning and buying land, and setting up construction. This means you’ll have everything you need to get to the point where you’re ready to break ground with your chosen contractors.

This means the book is most focused on everything you need before hitting purchase on your barndo kit. However, it will prepare you to work with banks, figure out where you’re spending money, and choose contractors.

Most readers cite that the lack of pictures in the book is disappointing. However, it does include floor plans at the end for inspiration. 

  • 119 pages 
  • Published in 2023
  • Ratings: 4.2 stars 

7. Barndominium On A Budget: Building A Barndo Without Going Broke (Michael Chapman)

If you’re looking for a short introduction into buying a barndo and keeping costs to a minimum, Michael Chapman’s “Barndominium on a Budget” offers exactly that.

The 23-page book offers a lightweight primer so you can see if building a barndo is the right call for you, without an in-depth investment.

The book also does not contain pictures or floor plans. However, it will introduce you to the topic, to what building a barndo should cost at the time of writing in 2021, and with as little time investment on your part as possible.

If you want something more in-depth, this is not the book for you, but if you want a quick overview, it’s a great choice. 

  • 23 pages
  • Published in 2021 
  • Ratings: 3.2 stars 

8. BARNDOMINIUM FOR BEGINNERS: The Ultimate Step by Step Guide to Building Your Affordable Dream Barn Home with Great Tips, Ideas, Advice, Eco Friendly and Great Floor Plan (Brace Alvin)

Brace Alvin’s “Barndominium for Beginners” is an early guide to choosing barndominiums, deciding on floor plans, choosing a kit, and deciding to move forward or not.

The guide is about deciding if you want to build a barndominium and just getting started. Therefore, there’s not much here about actually building your metal building kit.

On the other hand, it will help you decide if the barndo is the right alternative home option for your needs based on budget, work required, and other considerations.

That makes this a great book to buy if you’re considering barndos but aren’t really sure what they are, how they fit into budget, or how they compare to a traditional home. T

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he downside is that this book is poorly known and almost isn’t reviewed anywhere. 

  • 118 pages 
  • Published in 2022
  • Ratings: NA
  • Reviews: NA 

9. How to Build your Barndominium: The Ultimate Guide to Building Your Dream Barn-Style House Spending Less than $70 per Square Foot (Jim Kennedy)

Jim Kennedy’s “How to Build Your Barndominium” is another book that focuses on taking the first steps of deciding if you want to build a barndo or not.

It’s not for you if you’ve already settled on a barndominium. However, if you want to know what barndos are, what your exact options are, what to be aware of before getting started, and what your options are, this book will get you started.

It also covers crucial information like financing, so you’ll understand everything that goes into funding a new build or a conversion barndominium.

This is also one of the few barndominium books that focuses on custom red iron and wood pole barn builds rather than building kits as almost all of its examples are completely custom homes rather than kits.

To that extent, many reviewers do list that the book does not say how to build on budget. Many people also state that it is at a very beginner level, so you may not want this book if you’ve already started preliminary research. 

  • 100 pages 
  • Published in 2022
  • Ratings: 3.1 stars
  • Reviews: NA 

10. Barndominium Floor Plan: Barndominium Modern Home Plans and Designs (Isaac Cruz)

If you’ve already decided to build a barndominium, know what you’re looking for, and are just looking for inspiration for your layout and home, Isaac Cruz’ book “Barndominium Floor Plan” can provide a lot of insight.

In fact, with 116 pages of floor plans and photos, you’ll have a good overview of ideas and possible concepts you can work from. That can be a great help in guiding you as you make the choices that structure your new home like room placement, size, hallways, etc.

Of course, you’ll still need an architect to draw up anything you choose. In addition, some readers state that the book would be better with more details on every floor plan – which means this is for inspiration only. 

  • 111 pages
  • Published in 2022
  • Ratings: 3.0 

11. BARNDOMINIUM HOME PLANS AND DESIGNS 2023: From Building to Living, A Complete Guide to Design, Build, and Decorate Your Own Unique Barn Home (Douglas M. Wilson) 

With 259 pages of photos of barndominiums and floor plans, this book is a great inspiration option if you want to see how to build a barndo and what you can do with it.

The book includes chapters on planning, budgeting for, and choosing a barndo. That includes information on what to look for and what to look out for. You’ll also get dozens of full page photos of floor plans.

The size limit on the pages does mean that you may need a magnifying glass to see details on some of the floor plans.

In addition, many readers complain that the font is too large so you can basically read the full book in under an hour. Otherwise, it’s a great mix of photos, floor plans, and content to help you decide what you want from your barndo. 

  • 259 pages 
  • Published in 2023
  • Ratings: 3.2 

12. Our Barndominium Building Story: Save six figures and six months! (Grant Zimmerman)

If you’re planning to build a barndominium and mostly want to know what other people did, Grant Zimmerman’s “Our Barndominium Building Story” is a great start.

The book shares advice for planning, financing, and building tips for new barndominiums. It’s also a quick read, with about 83 pages of content and formatted to be skimmable.

While it’s not at all what the title promises (a story following someone having built a barndominium) it does take things to consider into account, so you get a heads up on what might come up, which complexities to be aware of, and what your first and next steps should be.

With the whole thing geared around trying to avoid barndo building mistakes, it’s a great choice if you’re considering a barndo and are stressed you won’t know what to expect. 

  • 83 pages 
  • Published in 2003 
  • Rating: 3.4 stars

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