Can I Purchase Just Pole Barn Plans?

Welcome to Ask the Pole Barn Guru – where you can ask questions about building topics, with answers posted on Mondays.  With many questions to answer, please be patient to watch for yours to come up on a future Monday or Saturday segment.  If you want a quick answer, please be sure to answer with a “reply-able” email address.

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DEAR POLE BARN GURU: I am very interested in pursuing a Hansen Pole Building for my horse barn.  However, since I believe I’ll need to go through a permit process, I would like to buy the pole barn plans, get my permit cleared, then buy the building kit.

The reason I would like to do it this way is in case there are issues with getting the permit that force me to “rethink” my desired approach.

Is buying just the plan an option?

Thank you for your consideration. SERENE IN SEABECK

Dear Seabeck: The first thing to do is visit your Planning Department, they will give you the answers as to how large a building you can construct, and where.

Here is more information:

Once you have talked with them, contact your Hansen Pole Buildings’ Designer who can work with you to determine the best design solution.

Your Building Designer can further guide you through your Building Department requirements. With your confirmed Design Requirements and engineer sealed plans, we guarantee you will be able to obtain a structural Building Permit.

Many companies, such as ours, do not sell “just pole barn plans”.

Why? Many reasons.

1. We have streamlined our process for efficiency. This means by the time you get your plans, we are far into a ton of series of steps happening concurrently – and have done much of the “work”….which has a cost. People are willing to pay an architect several thousand dollars for house plans, but they are unwilling to pay an appropriate amount for the work involved to produce truly custom pole building plans.

2. You get the plans from us, but decide to purchase your materials “elsewhere” and then are disappointed because you paid a lot more than you thought it was going to cost.

3. Worst of all, you purchase materials that don’t match the pole barn plans from someone else and your building contractor does not build to our plans and blame us when the Building Department won’t sign off on your building.

Why do we know all of this? Been there. Done that. And we do guarantee if you do your homework and communicate clearly with your Planning Department and us, you WILL get a permit.

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: My contractor wants to put knee braces on the already constructed trusses due to shallow holes due to limestone. The holes are 18 to 20in across and 1 1/2 to 2ft deep. What’s your take? Thanks. LIMESTONE IN LOGANSPORT

DEAR LIMESTONE: Friends Don’t Let Friends Have Knee Braces – JUST SAY NO.

Here is some more reading on knee braces:

There are solutions based upon how far along construction is. If holes have been dug only – I’d be looking at renting whatever equipment would be needed to get the holes to the depth and diameter as specified on the engineered plans.

If further along in construction (columns concreted in) a Registered Design Professional (architect or engineer) should be consulted for a design solution.

Adequate column embedment is a serious issue, taking shortcuts can result in catastrophic issues.

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