Tag Archives: pole building financing

Mike the Pole Barn Guru’s World

Mike the Pole Barn Guru’s World

Pole Barn Guru BlogWhen I began this blog back in June of 2011, I surmised getting to a total of 100 articles would be a stretch, but yet a worthy goal. Well, I have surprised even myself… welcome to article number 1500! What amazes even me – how many possible topics have yet to be written about.

Today, you get taken to Hansen Pole Buildings’ back room – where we actually have developed an outline for our Building Designers to follow with new clients. I share portions of this for many reasons, amongst them:

#1 In hopes competitors will read it and learn, in doing so everyone wins. Clients get buildings better serving their needs, competition has happier clients and our industry looks even better. I have always believed if all providers of post frame building kit packages played by a similar set of rules: 1. Every building should be designed by a RDP, i.e. Registered Design Professional, engineer or architect, specifically for a specific client at their specific building site. No getting one sealed drawing and using it for multiple clients.  2. We will figure out how to design your post frame building most efficiently, most cost effectively and with a higher level of service

#2 By being better prepared with information we (or any true high quality post frame building supplier) need, you (future new building owner) will have a smoother journey from planning to occupancy

“Delivering the Ultimate Post Frame Experience™” to every Hansen Pole Buildings’ client, every day.

Hansen Pole Buildings has most of our clients first contact us via an internet inquiry. If so, your information has automatically been entered into our database. First thing – I go to your record and see if you have subscribed to our newsletter series.

If you are reading this and are not a Hansen Pole Buildings’ newsletter subscriber, go do so now.  They are totally free and you may unsubscribe any time. A sign up link can be found in footer (bottom) of each page of our website. These newsletters are not designed to sell anyone, anything – they are meant to be entertaining and informative. You can read more about them here: https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/2011/10/pole-building-newsletters/.

For competitors – I encourage you to subscribe also, read them, edit them to fit your own business model and make them available to your clients. Informed clients make for happy post frame building owners.

Next you receive a personal email. When it comes down to it, there exist these four most important points when it comes to making a major investment:

     1)A fair value for money and time invested;

     2) It solves problem(s) or helps to achieve a goal;

     3) Liking and trusting those you are dealing with;

     4) Ability to get delivery within a reasonable time frame.

I encourage potential clients to take advantage of available financing options: https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/financing/.

All are also directed to contact their appropriate Planning Department to find out if they are allowed to construct the building they want, where they want it (this step helps to avoid anyone wasting time or having hurt feelings): https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/2013/01/planning-department-3/.

Next up – an email about Exposure C for wind. Pretty much universally most post frame building kit package suppliers and post frame builders quote buildings with an Exposure B, although a great many sites should have buildings designed for a more conservative Exposure C.

For more Exposure C reading: https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/blog/2011/11/wind_exposure/


We all live in a world of social media. I want you to know about me and I want to know about you. We do business with people we trust and are our friends. I’ve had some individual post frame client relationships for decades, as it should be. I want to be your Facebook friend, in your circles at Google Plus, and a Linkedin connection. If you use Skype it adds yet another method for us to stay in contact.

Lastly and most important, I want you and I to talk. Although you might believe you really know what you want in a new post frame building, I might have some thoughts and ideas you have not yet considered and no one else has suggested. Once I have gathered information from you during a conversation, I will often ask if you mind if I design your building if it was my own building. My mission in this – to come up with a best possible design solution for you, balancing investment and budget.I have saved clients hundreds of thousands of dollars on their new pole buildings by tweaking their initial design, from changing bay spacings to type of doors or windows. Why would I do this? My goal is to design a building which solves the problem. In other words, a building which is functional, is pleasing to the customer, and fits their budget.  

Welcome to the world of Mike the Pole Barn Guru!




Overhead Door Columns in Pole Barn Enclosure

No Columns for Overhead Doors

There are a few clients out there who leave parts of one or more walls open, with the idea of enclosing them at a later date. Most often this is done with the idea of being able to save money, however it is not always much of a money saver, especially if done wrong.

Here is just one example of why fully enclosed is a bargain compared to three sided: https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/2014/03/three-sided-building/.

Reader NATHAN from MOUNT VERNON writes:

“I have an existing pole building that is 36 by 36 (12′ spacing on all columns) and is 16′ at the front, 20 at the next column back, 16 again at the second column and 12 at the rear of the structure. It is only sided on two sides (back 12′ wall and one side). I’m looking at finishing the building out with three 14ft doors on the front, but no columns were installed for this purpose. The concrete poured for the existing columns will prevent me from having proper footing if I put in new columns as in a new build. Can I bolt the new columns to the existing ones (Blocking and 5/8’s galvanized threaded rod) and have the bottom in a post base of suitable size and strength. As there is no concrete floor in the structure at this point I was also thinking of increasing the slap thickness in these areas and adding rebar. Your help is greatly appreciated Nathan.”

Nathan happens to be in a part of the country which requires Building Permits for most everything. At some point in time he is going to have to have a Registered Design Professional involved (RDP – architect or engineer) as his Building Official is going to want to see an engineer’s seal on the plans for the remodel.

There are numerous possibilities the RDP may take for a design solution. To keep in mind, these columns will be supporting no roof load, so it is merely a case of having them be adequate in size to resist wind loads, as well as the door itself.

While Nathan’s idea probably works, it might be easiest to mount the columns needed for the overhead doors into appropriately designed column brackets: https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/2012/01/concrete-brackets/. A header can be run from one roof supporting column to the next to stabilize the top of the columns.

Before getting into a situation such as Nathan’s, research all of the options available. You might be able to enclose the building fully for little or no extra investment. As another alternative, financing is available which (with moderately reasonable credit) could allow some or all of your new building to be funded from a third party source with affordable monthly payments.

Check into your financing options today: https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/financing/


Taking the Air Out of Inflation

Welcome back, loyal readers. The first timers amongst you will want to jump back and read yesterday’s article, so today will make sense.

Or as much as any day can make sense!

First, as promised, the difference in buildings over 26 years of time (not just the price).

Method of Pressure Preservative Treating Wood – back then CCA was pretty much the chemical of choice, rarely can it be used under current Code requirements. (read more about CCA here: https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/2016/01/pressure-treatment-beyond-cca/).

Wall girts – the 1988 UBC (Uniform Building Code) did not have deflection limitations for wall members supporting steel siding. The advent of the International Codes in 2000 changed this. (read about limits on wall girt deflection here: https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/2012/03/girts/).

joist hangersDouble Trusses – we used to place a single truss on each side of the column, with “paddle blocks” in between. There was a better way and we have since found it: https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/2012/05/paddle-blocks/.

Roofs (and the trusses which support them) now need to be designed to support unbalanced loads created by drifting. (read about unbalanced loads here: https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/2016/09/snow-drift-loads/).

Our 1991 building had steel with minimal paint warrantees (it faded, sometimes a lot), as opposed to the great majority of buildings today having steel roofing and siding with 40 year or even lifetime warrantees. To find out more about fading: https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/2014/04/paint-fade/.

The industry standard painted screws, have been supplanted with powder coated screws (https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/2012/08/lobular-powder-coated-screws/)  designed specifically to yield superior results under wind and seismic events, due to full scale testing https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/2012/08/this-is-a-test-steel-strength/.

Besides “prettier” screws, the use of steel trims has increased. The building of 1991 had only ridge caps, corner/rake trims and J Channel around the entry door. Today’s building adds base trim (learn how to do it right here: https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/2016/12/cut-install-base-trim-corner/), trims at top of all sidewalls, and jamb trims around overhead door openings.

Open cell foam ridge cap closures have been replaced with UV resistant closed cell units and inside closures (https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/2015/12/the-lowly-inside-closure/) at the low edge of the roof steel panels are now a standard.

Lots of changes – even for an “it’s just a garage” basic building.

Now we can talk inflation. The $2995 built building of 1991? You can order it today, as a kit delivered for about $8000! With fair market price of labor at 50% of materials, try $12,000 constructed!!

Granted there have been some serious improvements in quality, however we are talking a 400% price increase in 26 years!!  This equates to an increase of 5.5% per year.

Every year.

For 26 years.

How to avoid this upward spiral?

If you need a new building, order it now. If you can get financing at rates of 5.5% of less, you are actually money ahead, based upon past historical performance.

Steel Roof Leaks

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 segment.  If you want a quick answer, please be sure to answer with a “reply-able” email address.

Email all questions to: PoleBarnGuru@HansenPoleBuildings.com

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: I have a 20 year old pole barn that I replaced the screws with washers…My steel roof leaks in the area half way between the top and the edge of the roof. the water runs across the two by four inside and I am not sure where the leak really is.Thanks MILES IN PRINCETON

 DEAR MILES: I can tell you how to find where the steel roof leaks….it involves two people, a ladder and a hose. One person stands inside of the building and makes lots of noise when the water starts to leak. The other ventures cautiously, utilizing proper safety procedures and equipment, onto the roof with hose in hand.

 Begin with running the hose above the spot where water has been showing up on the inside of the building. Give it at least a minute – no water, chances are the leak is not there. Go up the roof to the next row of screws and repeat. Eventually you will find the spot where the water is coming in.

 Now – how to fix it. When replacing old roof screws always go with both larger diameter shanks as well as longer parts. Putting the same size screw into a deteriorating hole is not going to be a solution to the problem. Remove the suspect screws and replace them appropriately, this should be a resolution to the problem, unless there is an actual hole somewhere in one or more of the steel panels.

 Mike the Pole Barn Guru

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: Do you have any type of financing available ???


 DEAR KEITH: We have numerous options available for financing, and in many cases – your entire post frame building improvement (not just the building kit package) may be able to be financed. Monthly payments will very due to credit worthiness.  You can begin the free process at: https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/financing/ 

Mike the Pole Barn Guru

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: Is it possible to have the top half of the gambrel roof just a bit longer so there is less of a peak and a somewhat flatter? LOST IN SPACE DEAR LOST: The beauty of a gambrel style roof is the pitch break locations (height above and horizontal distance from the eave) can be placed anywhere one’s heart desires and eye fancies.

There is a proportion for gambrel roofs which most people generally consider to be the most pleasing: https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/2012/06/gambrel/ 

Mike the Pole Barn Guru

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: Thank you for adding me on Facebook. I live in northern Illinois. I’m looking into adding a new building on my farm. I’m thinking 72’x130’x19′. A lot of people in my area use FBI buildings and I have a sales rep coming out in a couple of weeks. I’ve read a lot of your post and it gave me a couple of questions to add to my existing list of questions. What is the biggest mistake you see people in my shoes make and do you have any links to any similar buildings? Thanks again. STEVE

DEAR STEVE: I love Facebook, it is amazing how many clients chat with me on it – or just check in to read my daily blog posts. The number one mistake I see people make is thinking the only way to get a building like this is to hire a general contractor. Don’t get me wrong, FBI (https://www.fbibuildings.com/) does a great job, I’ve known the Bahlers for decades and one of my former employees worked for FBI.

But, at the end of the day, it comes down to getting the most for your investment. If you do not have the time or manpower to build it yourself, look into buying a package and hiring an erector to assemble it. Chances are you will save 25% or more right there. At the least, get a quote from us on your materials – it will keep anyone else honest. Oh – and always buy an engineered building.

Mike the Pole Barn Guru

Pole Building Financing: Why it Makes Sense

My lovely bride and I have been putting away money so we can finish our new home – cabinets, trims and floor coverings and we’ve got it made. Now we have been saving for what, five years? At this rate, I will be dead for about forty years before I’ll have saved enough to enjoy it.

And here is why….

I’m not an accountant or a financial advisor (this is a disclaimer), but I can do research and the math and some things make a lot of sense to me when it comes to buying a new building. Pole building financing has become the way to go for many of our customers.


It just feels like my money does not go as far as it used to. The U.S. Government’s consumer price index, just does not feel like it matches my pocketbook or checking account. www.shadowstats.com calculates inflation using the same methods in place as in 1980. According to them, the annualized rate of inflation in September 2011 was 10.5%! The thousand dollars I set aside in 2006 towards finishing the house has only about $600 of today’s buying power.

Let’s take a look at what would happen if you opted for pole building financing. We will use lots of big, round numbers, because the math is easy.

Borrowing $20,000 at 12% interest over 15 years (yes, I know the rate is high, but it is easy to calculate). Payments are about $240 a month. In the first year you will pay roughly $2300 in interest, over the life of the loan, total interest paid will be about $23,200.

If you are in the middle class tax bracket, your federal tax rate is about 25%. Under current tax law, interest paid upon your primary residence (or improvements to your primary residence) may very well be tax deductible. If so, you have garnered about a $5,800 tax savings over the full life of the loan.

Muddling this all together, without the use of any high powered computer programs….assuming the interest rate above, current actual inflation rate and tax savings – the cost in today’s buying power is….drum roll please…..roughly $20,000!!

Now the option is, I could put $240 a month into a savings account, and in 15 years it will have grown to about $46,000. Good news, right? Nope, because the buying power in today’s dollars of the $46,000….is about $9,000. You would have spent 15 years saving to buy but 45% of the building you could have been using. Just think of all the years you can use what your are investing in!

As much as I hate to borrow….sometimes it does make economic sense.

Check out our pole building financing page for application information on your Hansen Building.