It’s tempting to construct a post-frame building on the cheap to save a couple thousand dollars. Yet, those “savings” often actually turn into huge expenses down the road. It’s what happens if you sacrifice quality on any of three essential components of a post-frame project.
Of course, quality does cost more money. But in the long run, sacrificing quality for cash can cost even more. Why? Because lower quality materials tend to fail quicker than their sturdier counterparts – and repairs and replacements add a lot to the sticker price.
We’re not naive though. We know that many of you will likely still search for places to shave expenses. So let us just say this:
If you absolutely need to save money somewhere in the process, please, please, don’t do it with any of the following three features. We’ve found that pinching just $2,000 off any of them will probably end up costing you around $10,000 in the long run – and countless of inconveniences.
2. Overhangs and ventilation – Moisture is every building’s kryptonite. By its nature, it softens, decays and undermines everything outside and inside the building. Not including overhangs on your post-frame building is like taking away Superman’s cape. (We’ll let him keep his x-ray vision.)
Overhangs protect the walls and foundations of a building. They also allow you to build vented eaves and flow-through vents to ventilate humidity away. Please don’t take away these superpowers.
3. Site preparation – Site preparation involves creating a solid foundation for your building and properly preparing the earth for settling. Pretty important stuff if you ask us.
Yet, time after time we see people skimp on site preparation. Here are a couple consequences of foregoing quality in this area:
* Moisture related problems – Remember that whole kryptonite thing? It applies here again.
People skimp on things like using enough gravel as a solid base inside the building, allowing moisture to creep in soil inside the base of the building, eating away at its underbelly.
These moisture problems are exacerbated when the dirt around the building isn’t appropriately filled and sloped away from the building. When that happens, the ground settles towards the foundation, which leads to moisture pooling against the foundation.
Even the construction process becomes a nightmare as workers spend their days on a mud site rather than a sturdy gravel one. They might be forced to take some costly shortcuts to adapt.
* Cracks, twists and sinking – One of the telltale signs of a poorly engineered foundation is excessive cracks in the concrete floor. As the foundation shifts, it actually can stress and separate interior finishes.
You could also notice your windows begin to stick for no apparent reason as the shifting foundation twists your frames out of alignment.
You’ll pay more upfront for quality in these three areas, but it’s a lot less than the costly consequences of going the cheaper route. A post-frame project is an investment, and a bad one will turn into a black hole for your money. Make wise decisions.