How to build a post and beam barn on almost any foundation.

Before you do any site prep or foundation work it is a good idea to choose the right location for your barn. You can read all about choosing the right location here.

Ready to prepare your site?

Good, lets get started.

Here is a checklist for preparing your barn building site.

1.Clear any brush and or trees on your building site.

2.Make sure your site is leveled. Rent a bulldozer or hire an excavator for this step. Bring in any fill that you need to raise your building site enough for proper drainage.

3.Put barriers up to prevent to much foot traffic. You don't want people walking across your site and destroying all your hard work.

4.Choose the right foundation and excavate your barn site.

5.Build your foundation.

Now lets look at the different foundations that you may choose from to support your new post and beam barn.

A post and beam barn can be built on just about any type of foundation you can imagine.


Concrete piers or pillars

The most popular foundation for post and beam barns is concrete piers. This type of footing is cheap and versatile. It is as simple as digging a “post hole” setting the forms and filling it with concrete. You can get the correct size cardboard forms you need at your local lumber yard.

This way you can build your barn with a dirt floor and save a little money. You can always come in later and pour a concrete floor or build a wooden floor when your budget allows.


Concrete slab

You could choose to build your barn on a concrete slab. Check with your local building department to see how thick it needs to be and what kind of footings should be in place. A well built concrete slab can give you a nice flat surface to work from when assembling the framework of your barn.

Poured wall or concrete block basement

If you would like a basement in your barn you can build a poured wall basement. This will give you additional space. You could have a workshop in the basement and living quarters above. Just remember to add extra floor joists and floor boards to your kit.

Old stone basement

Do you have an old stone basement from a barn or old farm house that once stood on your site? If it is sound you could build your new barn on the old footing. Have your old basement inspected to see if it will support your new barn and is up to code. The great thing about this is after your barn is built you can celebrate it as being “Barn Again!”

Wood basements

I am not a fan of wood basements, it just doesn't make sense to me to have any wood below ground level. Moister can easily collect on wood underground and cause it to rot. If you were to choose to build your barn on a treated wood basement you could do so.

As you can see the post and beam barn is such a versatile building that it can be built on more types of foundations than any other method of construction. Whatever type you choose to go with make sure it is strong so that your barn will create its own legacy and stand for generations to come.

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