How to Build a Farmhouse

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A farmhouse can be much like a country house, with a large, gabled roof, large front porches and plenty of natural light inside or it can be a simple box-like design, built by working farm families along with barns and other outbuildings.

Things You'll Need

  • Houseplans
  • Land
  • Construction loan
  • General contractor
  • Decide on a style of farmhouse. Although all share some common elements, farmhouses can be Gothic, Swiss, Victorian or other styles. On the other hand, you may want to build your house in the local vernacular so it will resemble your neighbors' homes.

  • Choose the location of your farmhouse if you have a lot of land. Keep in mind where the sun will be during the summer, where the well is located and what the view should be from the porch or windows. Locate your house far from the road; stay away from too high a hill if you have bad winters or from low-lying an area if you contend with rainfall and flooding each spring.

  • Design your farmhouse for practicality. Farmhouses are designed to be used not only as a residence but the center of business for a farm.

  • Include more than one fireplace, a large kitchen and living areas and a wraparound porch. All these are essential elements in a farmhouse.

  • Consider furnishing your farmhouse with antiques or antique reproductions, country crafts and handmade items to give it a more authentic feel. You may also want to consider retro style appliances in the kitchen and old-fashioned fixtures in the bathrooms.

Tips & Warnings

  • Most construction companies don't work on outdoor projects during the winter for a reason beyond worker discomfort: the materials react poorly. Try and get the exterior done during the summer months and do any internal work, except for plumbing, during the winter, if needed.
  • As with building any house, you will need land to put it on, a construction loan to pay for the materials and builders, and a general contractor to manage it all.

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