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Avoid These 4 Mistakes in Your Post Frame Building

Avoid These 4 Mistakes In Your Post Frame Building

Today’s guest blogger is Katherine Rundell, a construction writer and editor at Assignment Help and College Paper Writing Service. She is also a contributing writer at Buy Essays. As a professional writer, she coaches college students on how to write in various fields.

Yes, buyer’s remorse can happen during construction. That’s especially true for when you’re building a post frame building or pole barn, because when buying the materials and putting them to work, it can easily get caught up in the vision of having a durable and attractive pole barn for your home, business, vehicles, tools, etc.. And that’s where buyer’s remorse comes in – What if the building is built in the wrong size? What if you’ve had the wrong materials to begin with?

So, since having a post frame building is a significant investment, it’s important to keep it that way by avoiding these 4 mistakes during the construction process:


1- Making Your Barn Too Small

“Size matters when you build a pole barn,” says Piper Porteus, an editor at Essayroo and Paper Fellows. “If you build your barn too small for its intended use, then you’ll immediately regret it, once you realize that you can’t fit your RV inside it, can’t move around your workshop tools, or aren’t able to house your livestock. Therefore, make it your job to learn what you want to put into the barn, and then construct it with those things in mind – your tools, your vehicles, your livestock, etc. Make sure that the barn will have room for anything and everything inside.”

“In roughly 20,000 post frame buildings spanning a 40 year career, I have never had a client tell me later it was just too big,” says Mike Momb, Technical Director for Hansen Pole Buildings.

On the other hand…


2- Making Your Barn Too Big

… you can’t make your barn too big either. Although you might be able to fit a lot of things into a large barn, the downside is that it can turn more into an eye sore rather than something to be proud of in your location. 

So first, when outlining your pole barn design, set some time to go to your building site, and then measure the area and dimensions required for the project. And, take into account how much space that you truly need, rather than settle for extra space that you won’t use after all. 


3- Working With No Plan

Engineer sealed pole barn“One of the biggest mistakes that people tend to make during pole barn construction is not having a solid plan for it,” says Eva Gilray, a writer at State Of Writing and OXessays. “For first timers, this mistake is crucial, because assuming that pole barn building is easy can be costly – from the project itself, to extra expenses for the replacement of unplanned damages during construction.” 

Therefore, having a good plan for the construction of a post frame building should include the following:

  • Thoroughly detailed engineered blueprints, specific to your building, at your site. These should depict every member, as well as all connections.
  • A detailed list of materials (i.e. the cut sizes and other materials) recommended for the specific style of post frame that you want to construct. Your building kit supplier should provide this.
  • Step-by-step instructions to walk you through each stage of construction.
  • Unlimited professional support while you build.


4- Purchasing Wrong Materials

stick frame building collapseFinally, keep in mind what kinds of materials that you’ll need for your project. Buying the wrong materials, or getting too much or too little materials, can be a costly mistake, especially when taking up a project like this one. This is where your chosen post frame building kit supplier should guarantee they will be providing all materials necessary for assembly per engineered plans.

Post frame construction, like any other building project, takes plenty of consideration and planning. In fact, there are hundreds of options to choose from when selecting the materials for your pole barn. However, as you make your selections, be sure to not fall into the trap of spending more or less than you need to. The ultimate goal here is to build a safe, durable pole barn with great-quality quality materials. 

Just keep these objectives in mind:

  • Buy what you need, keeping future uses in mind.
  • Don’t over or underspend.
  • Rely upon properly pressure preservative treated lumber.
  • Don’t wait until you order or receive your materials to think twice about how you intend to build and use a pole barn.



So, as you can see, having a durable pole barn depends greatly on the planning. That means that there’s no room for mistakes in construction. 

Therefore, be sure to do your homework ahead of time, and buy what you need. But more importantly, have a plan ahead of time, so that you know what to do step-by-step. Plus, having a plan allows you to research the various styles of pole barns available, the sizes, and the recommended materials. 

If you’re building a pole barn for the first time, then take into account these mistakes, avoid them, and good luck!


Pole Barn Mistakes: Taking the Blame

I was once at a get together at a friend’s house. It was crowded, with about twice as many people as the space comfortably fit (must have been a good party). Being as it was a casual event the kitchen became the hub of activity, with food and drink preparation, cooking, chattering and of course, clean up.

Besides all of the human guests there was a dog in the mix too.

Dog With Long TailI was at the sink washing dishes when I heard the dog yelp behind me. I turned just in time to see a woman curse at the dog as it dashed out of the kitchen. She had obviously just stepped on his foot or tail.

“Watch out!” she shouted after the dog, then saw me looking at her and added, “He’s always in the way.”

Really? You step on a dog and then you blame the dog? Who does that?

Actually, a lot of us do.

Blaming others is a poor strategy. Not simply because everyone can see through it. Or because it’s dishonest. Or because it destroys relationships. Or even because, while trying to preserve our self-esteem, it actually weakens it. There’s a more essential reason why blame is a bad idea: Blame prevents learning.

If something isn’t your fault, then there’s no reason for you to do anything differently. Which means, in all probability, you’ll make the same mistake in the future. This will lead to more blame. It’s a cycle which almost always ends badly.

Thankfully there’s a simple solution: Take the blame for anything you’re even remotely responsible for.

This solution transforms all the negative consequences of blaming others into positive ones. It solidifies relationships, improves your credibility, makes you and others happy, reinforces transparency, improves self-esteem, increases learning, and solves problems. It’s as close as I’ve ever seen to a panacea.

Contrary to what you may feel in the moment, taking the blame is the power move, strengthening your position, not weakening it. First of all, because once you’ve taken responsibility for something, you can do something about it, which gives you strength.

But also because it takes courage to own your blame, which shows strength. It immediately silences anyone who might try to blame you — what’s the point if you’ve already taken the blame? The “blame you” conversation is over. Now you can focus on solving problems.

Being defensive makes you slippery. Taking responsibility makes you trustworthy. You might think it puts you at risk because others may see an opening and jump on you. But this is not what usually happens.

There is one tricky part of this. To take the blame, you need to have confidence in yourself and your capability. You need the personal strength to accept failure. You need enough self-esteem to believe you can learn from your mistakes and succeed another day. You need to accept failure as part of life and not a final sentence on who you are as a person.

Now you may be thinking, “This is all well and good, but how does it apply to pole barns”?

Hansen Pole Buildings’ clients (and probably those of most businesses) generally fall into one of three categories.

The first (where the majority reside), follow directions and are self-reliant enough to work themselves past unforeseen challenges. They send in photos when their buildings are completed.

The second is more often than not an unhappy camper on a good day. “This building kit is the worst ever, your engineer is an idiot, and you need to fix it now”. Hmmmm, I think. Same kit we send out to the 98% of people who rave about quality and design, and the very same engineer.

I go with, “How about we look at the Building Plans and see what went wrong”. All too often I get a variation of, “Let me go look for them….now where are they?”.

Once the pole barn plans are out, the root of the situation is often uncovered. If not, we take the position of, “We must have done something wrong”. We track the path – Materials List is compared manually to the building plans, purchase orders to the material list, vendor confirmations to the purchase orders, and delivery tickets to the confirmations. As humans, we make mistakes, we are not perfect – we admit them and then do the important part – we resolve them as expediently as is reasonably practical.

All too often, even after the mistake is gently pointed out to them, do they admit to culpability. My sympathy level – low.

The third is generally a building owner who is diligently and carefully doing his or her own work. The call comes in, “I’ve made the worst possible error ever. You’ve probably never heard anything so bad.”

I actually love these people – they are so good to work with.

In my past life, I managed 35 pole building crews, across six states. If a mistake could be made, my crews found a way to do it. I’ve yet to have a Do-It-Yourself (DIY) builder top what my guys had done. I happily tell clients this story, talking them down into a more realistic perspective.

For these folks – I’ve always done everything reasonably practical to assist them. Worked them through how to solve a problem, and not repeat the mistake. Sent them a couple hundred screws for free, or arranged more or replacement materials at a discount.

In other words, it’s OK to step on a dog. It happens. Just don’t blame the dog.

Camels Have Humps: Fascias Should Not

We are on day 4 of working on a garage for my oldest step-son’s father-in-law in Happy Valley Tennessee.  You might want to skip back to Monday of this week, and skim through to catch on my day by day account of building a garage. – Last I left you, we encountered a problem of a “bump” in the fascia…which needed to be fixed before moving on. After running all kinds of stringlines and checking all of our measurements, we found the problem with the camel’s hump…er, fascia.

Pole Building FasciaThe truss notch on the left side of the building, where we set the first truss, was 1-1/2” higher than it should have been! The fix to the fascia was easier than one might imagine. The eave purlins were removed at this point, and the 5” ledgerlocks which held the trusses to the column were removed. Using his trusty Sawsall, step-son Jake cut the notch 1-1/2” lower, the truss was dropped into place and the fascia straightened itself right out.  Whew!  Major crises averted.

Aren’t pole buildings wonderfully forgiving? All of this fix was handled in less than the time it took for the dew to evaporate so more roofing could be installed. The right side was completed and it was on to the left.

The left side was not quite as perfect as the right side – it was off by 1/8” in diagonal, which was quickly fixed by just leaning a 2×6 against a corner column!  Once corrected and roof steel screwed into place, we had a roof with absolutely perfect dimensions.

No other challenges came up on the roof (other than unbearable heat).

Now it was time to run soffit. The right sidewall had a slight issue. Remember the truss we placed by hand? Not only was the left side too high (fixed above), but on the right side, where the end of the truss bottom chord should have been even with the outside edge of the column – it wasn’t!

The top of this one post was out by ¾” of an inch. The solution was easy.  We removed the 2×4 soffit support “L”, cut into it by the ¾” and reinstall. Soffit was now straight and the top of the wall would be straight. The ¾” across the wall from top to bottom would be impossible to see in the siding.

Granted, some of the “issues” we encountered should not have happened.  But even for the most experienced of crews, when you have many hands working on a project, sometimes “stuff happens”.  This is just a good illustration of how “forgiving” pole buildings can be.