View Full Version : Barn builder websites and designs

Jul. 13, 2012, 01:23 PM
What are your favorite websites to look at horse barns? We are planning to have one built, but I haven't found one that screams my name yet. I've looked at all the barns on Morton Buildings site, and spent plenty of time on google looking up builders site, barn plan sites, etc.

Much of my problem is just plain confusion. I don't even know where to start with how many stalls, what configuration, etc. I'm hoping to find a picture of one to spark the creative juices, but so far I just end up more confused, lol.

Even if you have pictures of your own barn to share. We field keep our horses and don't plan on changing that, so I have no idea how many stalls to factor into the equation. We are planning on leveling a large area that will over look a very big pond. Beyond that....no clue!

Jul. 13, 2012, 01:39 PM
Horizon is right there on the banner a lot of the time. I really like their barn with the finished loft, it has a shedroof dormer on one side, about six stalls. I'm afraid I'm like you, I like too many of the designs and can't figure out which one is best (or affordable either).

Jul. 13, 2012, 01:42 PM
Well as far as figuring out configuration/how many stalls. Start with your property size and the max. amount of horses you would like to keep on your property. Don't build more stalls than that. I would want a stall available for every horse I plan on having on the farm. You never know when it might be necessary to lock them in and you don't want to have to face the decision on "who do I have to leave out".

As far as configuration, a center aisle barn is IMO, the best design. Designed correctly, there is good airflow and the center aisle is great for x-ties and storing equipment during bad weather. Also, center aisle means you can have dutch doors/windows to outside, creating a run in type stall set up if you so desire. Adding 8-12 foot overhangs is also great! Extra storage, protects your siding, no rain coming in through open dutch doors, and it's a nice relaxing, shady spot to sit and watch your horses graze. :D

You should definitely go with 12x12 stalls too. Trust me on this. You think you're fine with 10x12 until you get a 17 hh horse in. :no:

IMO I think having all stalls on one side of the aisle, then having a tack room, feed room, some hay storage, wash stall/grooming stall, etc, on the other side is the best design. That way if you have stalls that let the horse reach their heads out, you can walk on the other side of the aisle so no one can nip the horse you have in hand. :yes:

Good luck!

Jul. 14, 2012, 01:23 PM
Try A&B barns website for ideas and lots of pictures to look at. They are in Pembroke, NH. Their buildings are a definite style or type.
They typically provide the design and materials with the customer providing the money and the builder.

Jul. 14, 2012, 01:27 PM
You should definitely go with 12x12 stalls too. Trust me on this. You think you're fine with 10x12 until you get a 17 hh horse in. :no:

Good luck!

I beg to differ on that, while our horses are out as much as possible, we have three 17.2hh warmbloods - all of which lay down in their stalls every night, never get cast and are just fine.

Not to mention it saves on shavings, stall cleaning, how much soft stall you have to install and how many stalls you get in the barn. Personally think anything bigger is a waste of money unless it is for a broodmare stall, a rehab stall or a horse that needs to be in a lot.

Jul. 14, 2012, 01:45 PM
Not enough information in the initial post.

Location, horse management and use of facilities, private, public and so much more will determine what kind of barn is best for your situation.

Add to that what style building appeals to you.:)

For a small barn with horses mostly outside, an ideal layout, but may still not be best for your location and needs, would be as already described by SAcres

Ideally, what is the most efficient use of space and labor may be, if you have a smaller central aisle barn, oriented to the South, South something, as is best for your area, with the North side of the aisle for storage, feed, tack room, bathroom, etc and maybe one or two enclosed stalls, the South side of the aisle for stalls with runs outside most of them.

Standard minimum aisle is 12' and stalls 12'x12', that will fit most any horse any time you need to stable them, even in a pinch mares and foals.
While you can get by with smaller if you have to, use and resell value will be best at the minimum standard sizes.

Our stalls are about 14'x14' and fine, not too large at all and we only use them in a pinch, our horses are outside 24/7.

When we had some 10'x10' and 12'x10' stalls, those were harder to keep clean, horses walked the bedding into a mess, unlike in the larger stalls and that was with grooms continuously cleaning after them.

Right now, we have an extra 14' overhang in front of the stalls, so a horse can be kept in the run with an overhang, or let into the stall also.

Our stalls are also portable, so we can rearrange and change dimensions and configurations and have done so several times.

Really, your imagination is the limit on what you want to build, but the more traditional, less out there you go, generally the easier it will be to find supplies for what you have, stall mats, doors, grills, gates etc.

Here is one company with some ideas, but those may not fit your area:


Jul. 16, 2012, 06:29 PM
Thanks for the websites, any others that have design and picture ideas?

Bluey, the problem is, I just don't know! Our numbers change every year, so I can't use that as a consistent indicator. All of ours are out 24/7, and even with an addition of an aisle barn, I do not intend to stall anyone. I don't plan to board horses, this will just be for ours. Right now we own 8, that includes 2 foals. Our pastures have run-ins and we do have a dedicated mare/foal barn already on the property (3 stalls).

What I want is organization to our existing chaos. I have no tack room, so stuff is piled everywhere. I'd like a couple places to cross tie to tack up, would love a wash room. Stalls to bring them in for feeding, or layup, or to put them in prior to a ride. Storage is an issue, my blankets are in bins and I'd love to have a nice place to keep them out of the way.

That ranch and golf site is pretty nice, I love their open indoors! Mainly I just want a website collection to start looking and deciding what exactly I do want...

I'd like to see different feed/tack room combos, how wash areas are set up, etc. just for ideas! Most barn sites may have a few pictures, but lack in interior pictures or blue prints. I really don't want to contact a builder yet as I don't want to get their hopes up or have them contacting me every week as we aren't ready to build just yet.

Jul. 17, 2012, 10:50 AM


Jul. 17, 2012, 01:33 PM
This is a PNW company that builds beautiful barns from kits. Not cheap, but I love looking at the pictures and plans on the site for ideas.


Jul. 20, 2012, 02:35 AM
Check out DC Building, www.dcbuilding.com. They built a custom barn for us and it was a great experience. They travel all over the country building Barn Pro Barns and custom barns.

Jul. 20, 2012, 03:56 PM
I am always designing in my head and checking out other people's barns. I too would basically turn-out almost all the time.

What is your climate like?

Have you read Cherry Hill's book? Has layouts and then gives the cons too.

Do you want a bathroom in there? Wash stall? Hot water? Keep water together--less lines to run.

If you go with 10x12 stalls make one with a removable wall so you can comfortably stall a large horse OR for a horse that is on stall rest. I actually drafted a barn (on paper) with 10x12 and 12x12 and the 10x12 (2) had a moveable wall. Because the tack stall and breeding stock location in it the different sizes didn't run together and look terribly weird.

Is budget a concern? This may help you decide the size. ;)

One of my non-negotiables in a barn from scratch is stall doors to the outside in case of fire. I also want an overhang and paddocks off the stalls.

I don't like loft hay, or main hay storage in the barn. Fire hazard and dusty.

I saw a cute barn once where they had cedar shakes (painted to match the craftsman house) on the house side and then did steel around the rest to save money. Color was an exact match and it looked really nice. Barn didn't have a loft, but had a steeper pitch.

Jul. 20, 2012, 09:25 PM
Here are some interesting pics and sites (more inspirational than practical):

This architectural site has some beautiful (big and expensive) stables. Click on a picture and it will take you into their site. I really like the wash rack at the Iron Rose Ranch:

It sounds like you want a tackroom/utility building, not a barn.

For my dream barn, I have designed a small barn with four stalls, a vet stall, and a lounge area. Then I have a separate building designed for a combo hay storage, tack room, wash rack/grooming area. This building will be a simple square-roofed structure with a concrete floor, inspired by the "City Center at Shiloh Horse Rescue which stays dry in the rain and cool in the summer:

Unlike the Shiloh building, a cinderblock floor-to-ceiling wall will divide my building in half. One half will be for hay storage. The other half will have a laundry, bathroom with shower, three or four small walk-in tack rooms, and an open area for grooming and washing. My kitchen will be separate, but you might want to put a kitchen in your tack room, maybe something simple that would accommodate a sink, a coffeepot, a microwave and a refrigerator. Do you need room for a desk or any place to do paperwork? How about a lounge area with a sofa, chairs or any seating?

I'll add more pictures if I find them.

Jul. 20, 2012, 10:41 PM
Here's another one:

Jul. 23, 2012, 04:28 PM
What are your favorite websites to look at horse barns? We are planning to have one built, but I haven't found one that screams my name yet. I've looked at all the barns on Morton Buildings site, and spent plenty of time on google looking up builders site, barn plan sites, etc.

Much of my problem is just plain confusion. I don't even know where to start with how many stalls, what configuration, etc. I'm hoping to find a picture of one to spark the creative juices, but so far I just end up more confused, lol.

Even if you have pictures of your own barn to share. We field keep our horses and don't plan on changing that, so I have no idea how many stalls to factor into the equation. We are planning on leveling a large area that will over look a very big pond. Beyond that....no clue!

You should definitely check out www.dcbuilding.com. Their website is loaded with gorgeous photos of barns across the country that they have built. Barn Pro's is also another company you should check out for pre-fab kits. Give Bret or Dustin a call at DC Building and they can answer any and all of your questions regarding your barn.360-282-0019. Hope this helps! :)

Jul. 23, 2012, 05:49 PM


Jul. 23, 2012, 05:50 PM



Jul. 25, 2012, 11:59 AM
THANKS!!!! For all the links!! FUN!

Jul. 26, 2012, 11:31 AM
okggo- Another place to look for ideas is Pinterest!! While a lot of barns pinned are quaint dairy barns in the New England Autumn- there are plenty of equestrian pinners who have made "My dream barn" boards.

I think a lot of your design choices might be determined by your own personal tastes and the style of your home on the property.

I just built a barn this year that I designed after being inspired by a picture i saw on a free handout magazine at the farm supply store- I lost the magazine- but the barn was stuck in my memory.

My barn is 36 x 48 yellow pine siding with red metal roof and has a cinderblock foundation kick wall. There is a 12 foot center aisle that will fit my/vet's/ farrier's dually. I still haven't finished the interior, but the way it's laid out is for 3 12x12 box stalls, (2 have dutch door access to the outside.) 4 6x12 tie stalls (old fashioned I know- I have driving horses and I like the patience they instill- and these stalls are mainly for bringing in to feed purposes- not for long term confinement) Each tie stall has a window to the outside. 12x12 Tack/feed room, 10x12 wash stall, and 14x12 storage area for bedding, wheelbarrow and a few bales of hay.

The design feature that people really love is the raised aisle loft. (Yes I am storing hay above the aisle) This is sometimes called a "monitor barn" What's different is the loft is 8 feet longer than the barn itself- so one end projects past the face of the barn- it makes shade and shelter at that end of the aisle- and adds a bit of architectural interest to the barn and farm entry.

I hope this link works- barn exterior west end

under construction east end

Jul. 26, 2012, 12:34 PM
Even when building from scratch, and after thinking you've thought of everything, you always find there are things that you missed once you start building.
I am in the process of building a barn right now, and already there are one or two things I wish I had done differently. For instance, I wish that I'd put a breeding stock in the barn....I still might try to incorporate that somehow....

Things that I did:
-Consider climate. Everyone here always suggests runs off of the stalls. Those are a nightmare where we live, it's way too cold and having doors on each stall is just a way for drafts to come in to your horses in the winter. I installed a 4x4 window that opens in each stall instead so in nice weather horses can have their heads out. We also made our barn an L shape with all coming/going traffic in the inside bend of the L, using the barn as a windbreak for the prevailing wind. There is nothing worse than loading shavings or trying to get horses in in the wind, this will cut that down a lot.
-We made 14' alleys
-I did 8 stalls... I hope to only have 6 in the barn. 6 are 12x12, one is 12x18 and one is 10x10
-Large tack room with washer/dryer
-Hot water wash rack and bathroom
-Because of size constraints my washrack will double as grooming stall, I can always tie in alley way if necessary.
-I made the stalls easy to feed without opening doors if a non-horsey had to do chores with doors for feed buckets and hay racks that are open into alley.
-I have both a large overhead door and a 4' wide door side by side so that you can take horses in/out the 4' 'people' door without opening overhead door in winter.
- I put an overhang all the way along one side of the arena so that you could store jumps/hay/shavings /tractor along that side out of the rain and snow.
-I have a feed room right inside the main door of barn so that stuff can get unloaded right into there.

No pictures yet, but I can't wait for it to be done!!
Good luck with your building!!

Jul. 26, 2012, 01:03 PM
What SAcres said, to a T!! Put in only as many stalls as your property will comfortably support in horses. I usually use the 1 horse per acre rule (as in, your actual FENCED acreage that the horses live on, not your entire property). And yes, a center aisle barn with overhangs!

I built a 36x36 3-stall barn, 12x12 stalls along one side with dutch doors to the outside and stall gates to the inside center aisle, a 12x36 center aisle, and 12x36 along the other side which is divided into hay storage, tack room, shavings bin, and a wash rack. Yes, I store my hay inside my barn, I'm very careful about not getting hay that is too wet, and we don't smoke or have ANY electric wires or outlets run anywhere near the hay. It gets pretty cold in the winter here in the midwest too, but the dutch doors can be fully closed and the little cracks they leave aren't significant enough to make big drafts. Or of course the top halves can stay open in nice weather. Besides, you should never have your barn sealed up too tightly, there always needs to be some airflow and ventilation. We also have outlets at each stall to plug in heated water buckets, clippers, etc.

The overhangs are a MUST HAVE. On the horse stall side, like SAcres said, horses can hang their heads out and not get rained on, and stalls don't get rained IN, even with blowing horizontal rain. I also keep the poop cart under the overhang and roll it from stall to stall when I clean stalls. Under the other overhang, we keep equipment--our flat bed trailer and tractor implements. We roped it off so the horses don't mess with the equipment when they are turned out. I wouldn't have it any other way.

Pics of when it was first built--not 100% done at that time (dutch doors have since been painted to match the barn & trim colors):

Jul. 30, 2012, 01:08 PM
I see you are in MO. I am in SW Mo and am having a new indoor arena built by Cleary http://www.clearybuilding.com/
They are national but have offices in MO. I also have a private farm. My horses are in paddocks with sheds. I do have a 40 x 60 barn with 5 stalls, each stall has dutch doors with an overhang and a 12 x 36 corral off each one. I like my horses to be out or at least move around as much as possible. I hardly ever use the stalls, just to tack up or if I need them up for some other reason. I have photos of my barn here http://www.dressageandmore.com/Our_Facility.html
The indoor is being built now!