A happy future requires a wise, well researched choice for barn designer, manufacturer and builder
Which company will you choose to build your barn? The answer to that question can make all the difference in assuring that you will not only have a pleasant construction process, but that your finished barn will provide years of trouble-free enjoyment.
Product Offering and Quality
All barns are not built the same and product quality is key. While many may look similar, significant differences exist between companies when it comes to the quality of the materials and workmanship used to fabricate the finished product.
It is important to remember that “cheap can be expensive” in the long run. Horses can dish out tremendous punishment to the walls and doors of a barn on a daily basis. A barn manufacturer should use only the highest-grade materials available in order for the structure to withstand generations of harsh use.
The company you select should offer a wide variety of wall materials and objectively give you the advantages and disadvantages of each, rather than offer only one type and insist that it is the best. The barn structure should appear strong and robust instead of flimsy. If it appears flimsy, it is probably because lower quality materials have been used to reduce overall costs. Welded components are generally the strongest, so make sure the manufacturer’s design is not primarily bolted or screwed.
Another important aspect to consider when choosing a barn company is what services are offered along with the contract.
- The company should offer to design the structure to accommodate your specific needs rather than try to force you into a standard design.
- Turn-key service should be available so that you will not have to coordinate sub-contractors.
- The project should be handled through the entire process by the Design Consultant, not handed off to unknown persons along the way.
- Instead of primarily purchasing your barn components from a third party, the company should have their own manufacturing facility that can build the barn to your specifications.
It is important to check the company’s quoted fabrication lead-time. The permit process can be time consuming enough. You don’t want to have to wait an extended time for your barn once it has been released for fabrication.
Additional services can make a company stand out, such as Pre-Construction Site Inspection. Ultimately, the company should adequately service your needs; customer service is critical to ensuring your project goes as planned.
Reputation and Credentials
The barn company should have the credentials that will certify the quality you are looking for:
- The company should be licensed, bonded and have a Fabricator’s License.
- The company should confirm that the building is manufactured according to the current building code. Otherwise, the structure may not be structurally sound and could injure inhabitants.
- The materials should be ICC certified and tested. Although not required, these assurances could ensure products meet standards which can expedite the permitting process.
- The company should carry adequate Worker’s Compensation and General Liability Insurance; if not, the cost of accidents or lawsuits could be passed on to you.
- The company should supply references that can be checked.
- Good standing in organizations such as the Better Business Bureau and the Contractor’s State License Board is important.
- Check company credit references for any past or pending lawsuits by customers.
For more information on how to check whether a contractor has a license in California and how to select a contractor, visit: https://www2.cslb.ca.gov/OnlineServices/CheckLicenseII/CheckLicense.aspx
Warranty and After Sale Support
After sale support and warranty provisions should be considered when selecting a barn company. An extensive warranty is desirable and the company should be scrutinized as to whether it is capable of standing behind the warranty. If there are warranty issues, there should be one contact person to go to instead of finger-pointing between sub-contractors.
Making an effort to research a prospective barn company can mean the difference be-tween the barn of your dreams that you and your horses can enjoy for years to come, or a building that is less than adequate and takes more time and effort to maintain than you imagined. Only FCP meets the high standards mentioned above and will encourage you to do the research to get the facts.
To learn more about how to select the right barn manufacturer, call an FCP Design Consultant at 1-800-807-2276 or request a quote.