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Steel Building Prices: How Much is a Metal Building in 2021?

Metal building rendering

One of your first questions you might have when looking for a metal building is how much does a steel building cost?

The average steel building price is $15 – $25 per square foot, you can add $20-80 per SQFT for fittings and finishings to make it a home. The cheapest steel building is a ‘lean-to’ which can cost from $5.42 per square foot.

While metal building kits are economical in comparison to other forms of construction, a steel building can still be a hefty investment. You need to efficiently plan your project in order to minimize your expenses and maximize quality.

Accurate steel building prices are hard to find online, with many companies keeping metal building costs hidden until after a site visit.

This is due to the fact that there are so many options and possible site layouts that need to be taken into account.

In this guide, you will find a large range of example costings for different building types for quick ‘ballpark’ prices. Plus estimations of different options available, like insulation, windows & doors and more.

According to oregon.gov, 50% of the nation’s non-residential low rise buildings involve the use of metal building systems. If you are planning on using this popular building type, you can get up to speed on pricing here in just a few minutes.

  • The average steel building price is $15 – $25 per square foot, but these costs vary depending on your options, size, and complexity of the structure.
  • Lean-to metal building kits cost the least per square foot due to the simple design, and residential steel homes cost the most.
  • Metal building kits are cheap and fast to build, it’s possible for some simple structures to be erected in just days.

In This Article

Here you’ll also find out all you need to know about the factors that affect prices, and how you can build your steel building to stay within budget. With this price guide, you will know what a metal structure will typically cost, and be able to adjust these estimates to fit your specific building plans.

What’s in this guide?

Steel Building Prices

In this section, we have broken down steel frame buildings by category of usage. You are going to find several examples of different types of steel buildings, that give you a typical price that you can expect.

This is a great place to start, but remember you’ll need to get a custom quote for your exact specification when you are ready, as there are many factors may influence the price of your steel building project. In a moment, we will go into more detail on how to calculate your building project cost too.

 

“Lean-to”

“Lean-to” steel buildings cost between from $5.52 per square foot depending on size, frame type, and roof style.

Lean-to Size (SQFT) Price $ / SQFT
Lean-to frame only 15×20 (300) $1,626 $5.42
Lean-to 3 sided frame only 15×20 (300) $1,559 $5.20
Lean-to with roof 15×20 (300) $1,936 $6.45
Lean-to 3 sided with roof 15×20 (300) $3,535 $11.78
Lean-to 2 sided with roof 15×20 (300) $2,683 $8.94

 

Carports

Metal carport kits cost from $5.95 per square foot, factors that affect prices include the number of cars to store, wall material, and roof options.

Carports 30x40 carport metal building rendering 4

Carport Size (SQFT) Price $ / SQFT
Carport 2 sided with roof 12×20 (240) $1,427 $5.95
Carport 2 sided with roof 20×20 (400) $3,557 $8.89
Carport 3 sided with roof 12×20 (240) $3,633 $15.14
Carport 3 sided with roof 20×20 (400) $4,992 $12.48
Carport 3 sided with roof 24×20 (480) $5,578 $11.62

 

Metal Garage Kits

Metal garage kits cost from $11.50 per square foot, with more expensive garages being larger with more windows and doors.

Garages 30x40 garage metal building rendering 3

Metal Garage Size (SQFT) Price $ / SQFT
Regular roof 12×21 (252) $2,900 $11.50
Boxed eave 12×21 (252) $3,100 $12.30
Vertical roof 12×21 (252) $3,300 $13.01

Options:

  • 30×30″ window = $150 each
  • Chain hoist = $200
  • Insulation from $1 per square foot
  • Walk in door 36×80″ = $215

 

Metal Aircraft Buildings

Metal aircraft buildings cost from $6.50 per square foot, this varies based on the number of planes and the geographic location of your site.

Aircraft hangars 50x60 hangar metal building rendering 2 1

Aircraft Building Size (FT) Price $ / SQFT
Arch frame 100×100 (10,000) $78,100 $7.81
Arch frame 100×200 (20,000) $87,400 $4.37
Rigid frame 100×100 (10,000) $75,000 $7.50
Rigid frame 100×200 (20,000) $130,000 $6.50

 

Recreational Steel Buildings

Recreational steel buildings cost between from $5 per square foot, depending on what the building is needed for and it’s size

Recreational metal building rendering 2

Recreational Steel Building Size (FT) Price $ / SQFT
Closed-end wall 80×120 (9600) $62,400 $6.50
Closed-end wall 120×160 (19200) $105,600 $5.50
Closed-end wall 120×220 (26400) $132,000 $5

 

Steel I-beam Structures

Steel I-beam structures cost from $7 per square foot. The I beam is a robust vertical column that can be used to make buildings stronger than tube frames for example.

I-beam Structure Size (FT) Price $ / SQFT
Regular Roof 12×21 (252) $2,955 $11.72
Boxed Eave 12×21 (252) $3,055 $12.12
Vertical Roof 12×21(252) $3,255 $12.92
Regular Roof 18×36 (648) $4,410 $6.81
Boxed Eave 18×36 (648) $4,885 $7.53
Vertical Roof 18×36 (648) $5,235 $8.08
Regular Roof 24×36 (864) $6,050 $7
Boxed Eave 24×36 (864) $6,575 $7.60
Vertical Roof 24×36 (864) $6,925 $8.02

 

Steel Rigid Frame Buildings

Metal rigid frame buildings cost from $5.20 per square foot and suit conditions that require durability. For example, in locations with high wind speed or snow loads.

Stable metal building rendering 3

Rigid Frame Building Size (SQFT) Price $ / SQFT
Rigid frame horse barn building 70×60 (4200) $25,620 $6.10
Rigid frame horse barn building 60×80 (4800) $27,840 $5.80
Rigid frame horse barn building 65×80 (5200) $28,600 $5.50
Rigid frame horse barn building 90×60 (5400) $28,080 $5.20

 

Steel Truss Buildings

Steel truss buildings cost from $8.92 per square foot and are ideal for commercial applications that require strength and a clear open internal space.

Commercial metal building rendering 5

Truss Building Size Price $ / SQFT
Large truss metal building 40×20 (800) $7,295 $9.11
Large truss metal building 40×24 (960) $8,345 $8.69
Large truss metal building 50×20 (1000) $9,595 $9.59
Large truss metal building 50×24 (1200) $10,695 $8.91
Large truss metal building 60×24 (1440) $13,595 $9.44

 

Metal Churches

Steel churches cost betweenon average $18 per square foot, fittings and quality are the main determining factor but the location also plays a role in cost.

Churches metal building rendering 3

 

Church Size SQFT $/SQFT Price
Church 3,600 $18 $64,800
Church 4,880 $18 $87,840
Church 7,109 $18 $127,962
Church 9,307 $18 $167,526
Church 12,058 $18 $217,044
Church 23,720 $18 $426,960

 

Metal Homes

Metal home kits cost $19.314 for a one bedroom and $50,850 for four bedroom with basic fittings. The number of bedrooms and finishing options can increase the price considerably.

Houses 30x40 home metal building rendering 3

Residential Home Size (m2) Bedrooms Price $/m2
Home Kit 53m2 53 One $19,314.50 $364.42
Home Kit 86m2 86 Two $29,339.47 $341.15
Home Kit 101m2 101 Two $34,693.85 $343.50
Home Kit 150m2 150 Four $50,850 $339

 

Steel Walkway Buildings

Steel walkway buildings cost from $916 to $2,444, and using heavier steel or aluminum can increase this further.

steel walkway

Arched steel walkway with a tube frame

Walkway Size Price
Walkway frame only 8×20 $916
Walkway with a roof 8×20 $1,448
Walkway frame only 10×30 $2,106
Walkway with a roof 10×30 $2,444

Steel Building Option Costs

As you might imagine, steel buildings don’t all fit neatly into one category. There are several options and features that you can add to make your project unique. These features influence the final cost.

There are thousands of combinations of steel building options, so it’s always recommended to compare quotes to get an accurate price. Here are some guide prices for popular metal building options:

  • Sliding sidewall doors range between $1,643 and $3,422.
  • Hollow metal walk-thru doors cost from $735 to $1,811 each.
  • Framed openings cost from $491 to $1,104 each.
  • Gutters cost from $12.76 to $25.42 per linear foot.
  • Insulation costs from $1.67 to $2.79 per square foot.
  • Overhangs cost from $32.14 to $95.45 per linear foot.
  • Skylights cost $170 to $1,108 each.
  • Ventilators cost from $230 to $834 each.
  • Steel sliding windows cost $436 to $623 each.
  • Aluminum windows cost from $310 to $529 each.
  • Thicker 6” concrete floor with 1/2” rebars increase per square foot price by $0.99.
  • Heavier 26 gauge colored steel wall coverings cost $0.60 per square foot extra.
  • No wall cover (just girts)cost $2.35 less per square foot.
  • No roof cover (just purlins)cost $1.99 less per square foot.

 

What Does a Metal Building Estimate Look Like?

This example metal building estimate from oregon.gov “cost factors for farm buildings manual” is for a Class 5 General Purpose Building containing 2,500 square feet and costs $39,963. Built with a pole frame, exterior wall height of 12 feet with enamel finish. Gable roof with metal cover, concrete floor, and electrical service panels.

Base Factor, Class 5 General Purpose Building
– Using table format method:
— 2,500 square foot Base Factor + $ 13.12
Adjustment factors:
– Cost per square foot adjustments:
— Wall height 12’; add for 2’ higher exterior wall + $0.36
— Galvanized metal roof cover – $0.22
— Square foot costs and adjustments subtotal; 2,500 sq. ft. @ $13.26 = $ 33,150
Lump sum adjustments:
– 60 ampere service panel + $900
– 110 volt outlets; 10 @ $ 70 each + $700
— Lump Sum Adjustments Subtotal $1,600 + $1,600
Replacement Cost From Manual $ 34,750
Multiplied by General Purpose Building LCM x 115%
TOTAL REPLACEMENT COST NEW = $ 39,963

 

What Affects Steel Building Price? 

Design and size

  • Simple, pre-engineered steel buildings are less expensive.
  • Larger steel buildings have a lower cost per square foot.

Steel building quotes are partially determined by the design that you choose. Whether it be pre-engineered buildings or one that is tailored to fit your specifications. The more complex and customized your plan, the more higher the price.

Another aspect of your building’s design that affects the price is its size. Like for like, larger buildings are more expensive. But, if you consider the price per square footage then more substantial buildings are less costly per square foot.

An interesting point about metal building costs is that making a building longer is much cheaper than making it wider or taller. This is due to the amount of steel used in the spans being less on long buildings.

However, prices should not be the only factor when it comes to choosing a steel building design. You should carefully consider what you want out of the building, and then decide which building design and size is the best way to achieve your goals. It may be worth the extra initial cost if it translates into other savings down the line.

Geography & Weather

Factors like the ground you build on, to the amount of wind and snowfall in your area, and other geographic features, can have a considerable impact on pricing.

Wind speed: In general, the higher the average wind speed in your area the higher the price. This is because you will require more sturdy construction to stand up to the wind. According to a dissertation published in the Texas Digital Library, the expected cost increase is $ 0.78 to $1.56 per square foot for wind speed increases from 100 to 140 mph.

beaufort wind speeds

The beaufort wind speeds scale

Snowfall: A higher roof snow load will require stronger support for the extra weight, resulting in extra costs. According to Fema, roof snow load is defined as the weight of snow on the roof surface used in the design of the building structure.

A building without adequate snow load for its location can and does result in building failure. Things that need to be considered are roof shape, roof pitch, wind speed, plus the location of HVAC units, windows, and doors.

The increase in costs for higher snow loads on a metal building can range from $0.53 to $2.43 per square foot.

Steel Building Regulations

Steel Building prices can change due to local and state building regulations and requirements.

If you want to determine the actual price of a steel building accurately, then you need to have a working knowledge of the building laws and regulations in your county, city, and state.

For example, different types of buildings have unique requirements such as requiring appropriate insulation, fire escapes, or a minimum number of doors and windows. This could bring costs up by $1 – $5 per square foot depending on location.

For many, building regulations tend to be forgotten or only given thought much later in the process where additional costs could suddenly pop up. Speak to a professional from the start to mitigate those risks and ensure you construct a steel building safely.

Of course, it is difficult to give an estimate here as it does depend on your location and regulations. Therefore, it is just good to be aware of this before you start your process. Often, there may be a help desk or government phone line you can reach out to for construction help.

Price of steel

Fluctuating prices of steel cause changes in the costs of steel buildings.

This data from Focus Economics shows the price per metric ton over the last few years.

2015 2016 2017 2018 2019
Steel (USA) $519.95 $619.92 $828.46 $603.52

The change in the price of steel between 2018 and 2019 would reduce the overall cost of a 5 x 8m steel building, which uses 2.6 Tons (2,600 kg) of steel by $584.84.

Construction

Steel building prices are also determined by the effort required and complexity in its construction.

In general, construction accounts for up to 40% of the total price of a steel building. This covers everything that goes into the process of erecting your building from delivery, materials, and insulation.

Internal structural steel beams (such as I-Beams) cost around $65 per meter, as opposed to Quonset Huts or other self-supporting buildings that don’t require these beams.

There are many other construction factors that affect prices, which are out of the scope of this article. Fill in the form at the top of this page to speak with an expert and discuss your needs today.

Metal Building Supplier Prices

Typically, it is a good idea to shop around before you settle on a steel supplier or contractor. This is because many companies offer different services and specializations. Some may offer better deals, or better service, for some projects than others. In this section, we have included some trustworthy names for you to consider.

Here is a list of some popular companies and their average metal building costs.:

Morton Buildings

Morton buildings offer a wide range of steel buildings, are BBB accredited, and offer prices for a fully insulated ranch style house shell for $50 per square foot. This could put your 2,500 square foot house at $125,000 in build costs.

Morton buildings also offer many other styles of farm, shop, industrial and residential buildings.

Muller Inc

Muller Inc offers workshops, garages, homes, storage, and commercial steel buildings. They offer finance for most buildings up to $30,000 at 5.99% for up to 36 months. If you are a deserving non-profit organization, you could even get the chance of a free building for your project. A Muller Inc 50 x 50 workshop or barn could cost around $15,000 including standard concrete foundations, galvanized steel walls, and a simple pitched roof.

Freedom Steel

Freedom steel specializes in quality pre-engineered steel buildings. Recently reported prices include a 24 x 24 storage or utility building for $12,952.41, or a large 80 X 200 multi-purpose farm building with a PBR roof for $109,354.93.

Steel Building Costs Per Square Foot

Steel structures are usually priced per square foot, below you can find some examples of each type of metal building kits and their cost.

Steel Structure Average Cost per SQFT
Quonset Hut $12 per SQFT
I-Beam $17 per SQFT
C-Channel $18 per SQFT
Modular $60 per SQFT

Choosing The Best Steel Building

To pick the best option for you, you need to start with a focus on your needs. You need to first outline the type of steel building project that will satisfy your requirements. Consider your needs, and put those above all else.

Once you have an accurate idea of the project you need to build, you can then start comparing all the factors on our list to find the most economical option. After all, an option isn’t economical if it doesn’t even suit your needs.

By following this strategy, you ensure that you are happy with your project, while keeping the metal building costs at a minimum.

FAQ

What is a metal building kit?

Metal building kits are pre-engineered off-site and delivered to you for assembly by a team of professionals. Kits are usually cheaper as the expensive design is split over 100’s of building sales.

If you are interested in metal building kits, there are over 40 building types, each with almost unlimited options to choose from. Prefab metal building kits cost from $12 – $60 per square foot depending on size and options.

Can a steel building save me money?

Having a steel building could save you a significant amount of money, as it is generally a much less expensive material overall than many others including stone or wood for example.

How long does a steel building take to install?

Installing a metal building kit, depending on the complexity of the structure, could take as little as a few hours or days, to as long as weeks or even months. This depends on the size of your building, the extra materials you want to use, as well as things such as whether you need plumbing or electrical work.

Types of steel building

The style of your metal building will impact price, here are some of the more popular frames:

Tube frame

Tube frame steel structures are some of the most basic frames on the market, as they often have a single beam that is bent at the top and eventually meets another beam opposite to it. This creates a type of arch which is finished by a layer of steel sheeting on top to build a roof. Leaving you with a structure that is open-ended and sometimes doesn’t have walls. These buildings are great for carports due to their low cost and ease of construction.

A 20 x 80 (1600m2) tube frame steel building could cost $8,680.

Arched buildings

Arched frame buildings are easily recognized with their semi-circle or arched entrance shape. The most famous of these is the military-style Quonset hut which can be found in farms, garages, and storage yards nationwide.

These are the second lowest cost type of steel building, and provide a clean open space in the middle to house anything from aircraft to winter hay.

A 20 x 80 (1600m2) arched steel building could cost $19,200.

Single-span frames

Single span or clear span frames are simply single roof beams with supporting wall beams on either side. These beam sections can be placed 20 – 30 feet apart to create a building almost as long as the imagination. These sections are called Trusses. The benefits of single-span construction are:

  • Simple to insulate
  • Fast assembly times
  • Clear, open internal space

A 20 x 80 (1600m2) single-span steel building could cost $27,200.

Multi-span frames

Multi-span frames simply have extra beams running from the roof to the floor. These let you expand your building to be as wide as you need. It’s cheaper to use single-span frames, and have a longer building rather than a wider one because there is less heavy steel to use.

A 40 x 40 (1600m2) multi-span steel building could cost $32,000.

Conclusion

In conclusion, the costs of your steel building might depend on many different factors such as the type of construction, the current price of steel, the options you choose, along with the geographic location of your site. In short, we hope you have found a good deal of expert knowledge in this article, but understand the only real way to get an accurate price for your exact requirement is by speaking with an expert.

Get in touch with us today for friendly, free, personalized advice to make the right decision for you.

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