How Much Does it Cost to Build a Barn, Shed or Playhouse?

Build a Barn, Shed or Playhouse Costs
Average reported costs
based on 268 cost profiles
Most homeowners
spent between
$1,830 - $4,309
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If you're looking for some extra storage space for your home, building a barn or shed might be the way to go. This is especially popular for homeowners with small or filled-to-capacity garages or who have lawn or hobby equipment that needs its own place. Barns and sheds can also be used as workspaces, which increases options but also complicates figuring out prices. Playhouses are also good options for homeowners with young children who want an outdoor space to play in but no trees for treehouses.

Square Footage

The size of your barn, shed or playhouse will determine a lot of the price. The larger the edifice, the more it will cost. That means more materials, as well as more labor time for construction.

Building Codes

You'll likely need to get this project approved to ensure that it's abiding by local codes and laws. Building an exterior structure like this requires some permission, and there are typically rules for how close to property lines it can be, for example. This shouldn't add to your cost, but it could end up delaying the project if you don't plan for it in advance.

Site Prep

You'll likely need to excavate an area for your barn or shed. This would also include pouring a concrete foundation and floor. This is a job that's definitely suited for a pro, so this aspect will bring the cost of building a shed or barn up. Playhouses can usually be pre-built structures bought at a store, but otherwise the same steps will need to be taken ahead of time to build your own.

Building Materials

The materials you choose will be another factor in the cost. The wood for framing, what type of flooring you choose, whether you want to drywall or keep wood for the walls–these are all decisions that will factor into the price.

Electrical Components

Putting in new electrical work will require a licensed electrician and will need to be done to code. This is a big part of the cost of building a shed or a barn, but it will make the space more functional in the future. This could allow working into the night and is good for safety concerns. Playhouses usually do not include electrical work, as children use them to play house, but parents can decide to have electrical work installed in them if they want to put a lamp or overhead light in the structure.

HVAC Installation

If you're using the barn or shed for work or animals, then installing an HVAC may be something to consider. This will be an additional cost but will make the space useful in extreme temperatures.

Adding Plumbing

If you want to add a work sink or need drainage, then plumbing will also need to be installed in your new structure. The cost of installation, as well as utilizing a plumbing professional, will add to the overall price.

Fitting Gutters

Gutters will need to be installed on the structure's roof to ensure for proper drainage and to make sure you don't ruin that new foundation or your lawn surrounding it.

Door Installation

Installing the door will mean picking out a door and the hardware. There are a lot of options out there, so it will ultimately be based on your taste and needs. Just make sure to factor this into the cost.


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