Can A Barndominium Have A Crawl Space?

What is a crawl space, and do you even need one in a barndominium?  Most barndominiums are built on a solid concrete foundation so how would you access the crawl space?

Can a barndominium have a crawl space?  Yes, it can but you have to figure out how you want to implement it before laying your foundation. With a crawl space, most are just walls and a dirt floor using a short basement foundation.

We will cover what a crawl space is and how to make one under your barndominium.  We will discuss the type of foundation you will need and why you should add a crawl space.  After reading this article, you will know everything about a crawl space before adding one to your barndominium build.

Key Takeaways:

  • Crawl spaces can be built on flat land or below ground.
  • They are called “crawl spaces” because they are not large enough to stand up in but tall enough to crawl in.
  • They can add to the cost of your barndominium construction and require a professional builder’s expertise.

What Is A Crawl Space?

A crawl space will give you access to plumbing, electrical wiring, and heating and cooling systems.  Generally, a crawlspace will only be two to three feet tall, with just enough room for someone to crawl around in.  They can be built with a concrete floor or just a dirt floor and walls.  Most of these spaces are unfinished but there are some that will install wood sides and floors to make crawling under there less messy and easier.

What Is A Crawl Space

In warm, humid regions, they may need protection from moisture so the crawl space may have extra insulation or a vapor barrier for protection.

This is a picture of what a crawl space can look like under your barndominium.  As you can see from the picture, there is a cut-out in the foundation where a door will be installed so you can get into the crawl space if necessary.

Can A Barndominium Have A Crawl Space?

Yes, a barndominium can have a crawl space.  Most of these extra spaces are used to run plumbing and electrical wires.  Some even use this extra space for their heating and cooling ducts.  They are generally built on a basement foundation.

One of the main purposes of having a crawl space is to create a small buffer between the dirt below and your barndominium.

Can A Barndominium Have A Crawl Space

Pros

  • Makes it easier for plumbers and technicians to reach mechanical and electrical components because the pipes and wires are not buried in the concrete slab floor.
  • With a crawl space, you can insulate the ground floor of the barndominium. To do this, add spray or blanket foam to the floor joints.  This may improve the energy efficiency of your barndominium, helping to reduce cooling and heating costs.
  • The dampness and water vapor does not reach the barndominium, so it acts like a protective barrier from element conditions
  • It is a great idea if the land is uneven because the crawl space can be adjusted to create a level platform for the foundation of your barndominium.
  • Allows for ventilation beneath the house. This can help to keep your barndominium cooler during the summer.
  • It can be used for extra storage, but you have to make sure that whatever you store there is protected from the dampness.
  • The crawl space raises the foundation to give your barndominium a defense in case of flooding.
  • If you need to do any remodeling, such as expanding the kitchen or adding another bathroom, a crawl space makes it easier to reach the plumbing to do the remodeling.
  • If you have to do any remodeling or repairs to your barndominium, having a crawl space makes it where you do not have to tear up the flooring to get to the pipes, ducts, or electrical wires.

Cons

  • Some crawl spaces will require moisture and insulation protection so it will cost to have the space encapsulated. This involves sealing the floors and walls to keep the moisture out.
  • The ventilation that helps keep your barndominium cool during the summer can make it harder for you to keep it warmer in the winter. This can increase your heating and cooling bill.
  • It can be a place for infestations and pests of different kinds to develop. This can be a hassle to clear up.
  • Adding a crawl space will take extra time, money, and effort. Sometimes the cost is not worth building one.  A crawl space costs about $7 per square foot whereas a slab foundation costs about $4 per square foot.
  • They are prone to becoming damp because of the moisture they are absorbing constantly if the ventilation does not dry the crawl space suitable. If the dampness is not controlled, it can damage the internal structure of your barndominium.
  • The maintenance of the crawl space can be hard to do so cleaning them out regularly can be a hassle.
  • Slab foundations rarely require maintenance but with a crawl space, you have to make sure that the soil around the foundation drains the water away from your barndominium.
  • Crawl spaces can cause shifting and cracking over time, reducing the foundation’s structural integrity.

How Do You Make A Barndominium Crawl Space?

To make a crawl space for your barndominium, you would not use a solid concrete slab foundation but instead, use a basement foundation.  To make a crawl space, you have to excavate down into the dirt under the barndominium.  Some will just flatten out the ground and leave it as a dirt floor.  Others will dig a hole under the barndominium and shore up the sides with concrete or wood.

When you make a crawl space, make sure that you prop up the barndominium with stable, strong beams.

Conclusion

Can a barndominium have a crawl space, and the answer is yes.  There are many reasons to have a crawl space but there are also reasons not to.  Take your time after reading this article before deciding whether or not to build a crawl space under your barndominium.  The biggest plus to having one is that if you have issues with plumbing or electrical, it makes it easy to take care of and you do not have to tear up your slab flooring to take care of it.

James Hall

James Hall

I'm James, your barndominiums advisor. Several years ago, I had no idea what barndominiums were. Although I'd spent over 10 years in the construction industry, the first time I heard about barndominiums was when I saw my neighbor building a new-style home. That was the first barndominium I've ever seen, and I found it so fascinating that I wanted to learn more about them. In my research, I found that there is very little information on barndominiums on the internet. Barndominiumideas.com was started to provide people with information, inspiration and education on building their dream house.

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