Tag Archives: concrete costs

New Build Features, Concrete Costs, and a Monolithic Slab

This week the Pole Barn Guru answers reader questions about specific features for a new build, possible costs for concrete for a 60x150x12 red iron building, and installing a monolithic slab in an area with rocky soils.

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: I like a 35′ wide by 45′ deep 18′ high. Ridge running the depth of the barn. I’d like 20′ lean-to’s on each side. 2 14’x14′ doors, one in front and one in back. Want to drive through. I’d like to know if we can have an open floor plan? I’d like all the inside walls to open into the lean-to’s. I was also wondering if we can use roofing panels that allow light through on 1/3 of left lean-to? That area would be used for plants. Let me know if it can be done and we can add some more details to get it done. Thanks. SHANE in BRIDGETON

About Hansen BuildingsDEAR SHANE: Provided you have available space, you might want to consider a 36′ x 48′ main building, as it is more efficient in materials usage and will likely be roughly same in investment. Yes, you can have an open floor plan, with no inside walls between main building and lean-to areas. While it is possible to use opaque white translucent polycarbonate panels for portions of roofs, they can prove to be problematic. From a structural aspect, polycarbonate will not adequately transfer wind shear loads, so those area will require steel strapping between roof purlins and sheathing. Below this area, everything will seriously bake – including supporting lumber. All of this lumber (below polycarbonate roofed areas) should be pressure preservative treated to reduce potential incidence of decay.

Can you estimate concrete cost for a 60x150x12 building? Red iron.

DEAR WALTER: For a red iron building, I would need to see engineer designed foundation plans in order to estimate required concrete for foundation, it will take a significantly greater amount of concrete than would a fully engineered post frame building. For a similar size post frame building, expect to use roughly 11 yards of concrete for footings and bottom collars for columns – this is based upon a 2000 psf (pounds per square foot) soil bearing capacity, Vult (Ultimate design wind speed) of 150 mph (miles per hour) and a Wind Exposure C. https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/2022/06/wind-exposure-and-confusion-part-iii/


DEAR POLE BARN GURU: I am working with Jackson on a quote for a 40x60x16 pole barn. The plan was to install the barn on a monolithic slab as our soil up here in Rhode Island is rather rocky. My town building inspector informed me that I would need to submit an engineering/stamped plan for my concrete work. Jackson suggested I reach out to you to discuss if there are any alternatives to a monolithic slab and what your recommendations would be. ALEX in WEST GREENWICH

DEAR ALEX: If a monolithic slab on grade ends up being your best alternative, we can provide engineer seals for it within our drawings. Anticipate having to dig a trench 24″ deep around perimeter and having to insulate slab edge.

There are alternatives – least invasive and most affordable will be to excavate square piers at column locations, slab itself will pour on grade.

Either of these would require wet set brackets (included in quote Jackson provided) and insulation requirements would depend upon if building will be heated or not, as well as if radiant heat will be used in slab.

Financing, Ventilation for Metal Trussed Shed, and Concrete Costs

This week the Pole Barn Guru answers reader questions about what financing is available for a post frame building, a question about ventilation for a metal trusses pole barn, and a comparison of concrete costs for post frame vs red iron buildings.

MoneyDEAR POLE BARN GURU: I’m looking to build a 25′ x 50′ pole barn 16 ft with an open lean-to on each side. I’d like the lean-to’s to be 20′ wide and the same depth (50′).so the total width would be 65′ by 50′ deep. My question is about financing. I’m not sure how financing would work. Do you have a financing co. or if that something I would get on my side? Thanks SHANE in BRIDGETON

DEAR SHANE: Financing is actually quite simple. Here is link to apply: https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/financing/


DEAR POLE BARN GURU: I am looking at building a 30×50 pole barn with metal trusses.  There is no soffit. I will be adding central hvac unit. Will stud up the walls between posts and add faced fiberglass Batts. Ceiling will be kept vaulted with metal on underside. Question is what insulation should I go with in the ceiling and will I have issues with not having a soffit or any roof venting? CHRIS in COLUMBIA

DEAR CHRIS: If you are insulating directly above bottom of trusses, then you need to ventilate this dead attic space. You could use rectangular gable vents spaced along each sidewall and have a vented ridge.

I would recommend blowing in granulated Rockwool, as it has a high R-value to thickness and is unaffected by moisture. You are in Climate Zone 3, so you should have at least a R-49 in your ceiling.


DEAR POLE BARN GURU:  I am looking into your building system and I wanted to compare the general concrete amount and cost.  Would you say that a pole barn uses less concrete than a red iron/tube steel building?  If so, how much generally speaking and what details can you provide. BRONSON

Screeding ConcreteDEAR BRONSON: Thank you for your interest in a new Hansen Pole Building.

Tube steel buildings are generally not considered to be permanent structures, so generally use very little concrete (and usually cannot be permitted, as they are not permanent).

Red Iron (Pre-engineered Metal Buildings) usually require you to hire an independent foundation engineer. As PEMBs have a significant outward force at base of frame verticals, they most often have a significantly large pier at each column (and require precision placed anchor bolts). Actual dimensions will vary greatly due to dimensions of building, roof slope, soil conditions and if there is a concrete slab on grade or not. It is not uncommon for single piers to take a yard or more of concrete.

Obviously many aspects come into play in determination of post frame building column concrete. Other than miscellaneous door columns, it would not be unusual for a 40′ x 60′ post frame building (as an example) to need under three yards of concrete for all column footings. Post frame slabs on grade do not require thickened edges – so a nominal four inch slab 40′ x 60′ would take 30 yards of premix.




Basements, Foundations, and OHD Back-Hangs!

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: Is it possible to have a full basement with a residential build? What would a basement do to overall cost percentage wise? NATHAN in OAK LAWN

cutting stairsDEAR NATHAN: It is very possible to have a full basement beneath a post frame home. According to www.HomeAdvisor.com installing an unfinished basement will cost from $10-$25 per square foot. With this alone in mind, it makes it less expensive to have a larger footprint on a single level, than to build over a basement. There also becomes the issue of accessibility – going up and down stairs becomes tedious for the able bodied and prohibitive for those with disabilities.


DEAR POLE BARN GURU: Thinking about a pole barn home in Michigan. Can you bury wood poles for foundation or do the wood poles need to go above grade on concrete foundation or piers. Thanks. TIM in MARION


DEAR TIM: Post frame (pole barn) homes do not have to be constructed on a continuous concrete foundation or on piers. The properly pressure preservative treated columns are more than adequate to support your new home.


DEAR POLE BARN GURU: When installing ceiling liner panels in a pole barn….. there are 2 14’x14’ garage doors. Where the bracing for the garage door track are screwed to the bottom side of the trusses, can I lower those braces, install the metal (3/4” ag panel) then put those braces back up in the same spot with the track being 3/4” lower than they were originally? JUSTIN IN GREENFIELD

DEAR JUSTIN: If you attach the angle irons in the flats of the liner panels, then the track will be at the very same height. Attachment through the ribs of the steel would not be recommended as the fasteners will have flexibility between the top of the rib and the underlying trusses. This could result in several problems – slots forming in the liner panels as well as the possibility of the track developing enough movement so as to cause the door to come out of the track and land on the floor.