The agricultural sector is one of the most critical sectors in the US economy, as it contributes over a tenth of all employment, and its outputs are the foundation for almost every other sector. It’s of utmost importance that all resources that go to the Agricultural sector are used efficiently.
One of the best ways of promoting efficiency is by sticking to your budget, and an AG building is one of the fixtures that always seems to use more resources than you bargained for. That’s why we’ve put together a few strategies for sticking to your AG building budget. Keep reading to find out more.
The number one reason most first-time builders feel like their budget ran laps around them is because they based their budget on the price of the materials. What’s worse is that this “survey of prices” usually consists of one spreadsheet and one long session of online store perusal.
When it comes to preparing your project, it’s better to do more preparation and not need it than to go back and re-adjust plans and budgets.
The first reality to face with overplanning is that the building itself is only half the project budget-wise. Many expenses like to rear their ugly heads once you embark on this project.
The most significant unthought-of expense is that of wages. Every person who has a hand in the project has to get paid. This bill can get steep when you factor in surveyors, insurance brokers, compliance experts, and other administrative types.
The next biggest expense is hooking the building up to existing water and electricity infrastructure.
At the time of writing, steel prices are at one of their higher points in history. Since most AG buildings are made of metal, steel’s current economic situation could make you rethink your plans a bit.
A great alternative to custom-designed metal buildings is prefab metal buildings. If it suits your purposes, you can buy metal building kits that get shipped to your property and set up in a few days.
Butler Buildings are a great example of one of these services. If your farming operation expands quicker than you thought it would, or if you need more than one building, you can also buy Butler parts to join the prefab buildings together.
Prefab buildings save money in several ways. They’re quick to set up, which cuts costs of wages and machinery down by a lot. This also means that your farming operation can get running and profitable much sooner.
Perhaps the building you want to build doesn’t need to be made out of metal at all. Metal is the most popular material for AG buildings, but we’ve been using other materials for thousands of years, particularly on farms. You can cut your budget by substituting non-essential metal components with one of these other materials or build the entire building out of something else.
Timber is the closest to steel in pricing and ease of use, but it’s not as durable. Customizing the interior of a wooden building also requires different techniques than a metal building would. You may have to pay extra for a carpenter, but at the same time, there’s a lot more the average person can do with wood than with steel.
Wood could be cheaper or more expensive than steel, depending on the time of year and what’s going on in the housing market. You need to watch the market closely and time your commencement date right to make savings this way. Wood is an excellent choice for fixtures like stables, chicken coups, and basic storage.
Repurposing Existing Buildings
If your budget is quite limited, but you have a building on your land that could be reconfigured for the job, that’s an excellent option. Getting everything you have working for you will help you make more future profits, allowing you to build the steel building of your dreams further down the line.
Do What You Can Yourself
If you’re living and working on a farm, chances are you’ve grown up learning certain technical and artisanal skills. Why then pay builders and contractors for what you can handle yourself?
Being a participant in the building process is a great way to whittle down some of the expenses. If you’re skilled enough to pour concrete, weld, run electrical wiring, or do plumbing, then those are all areas where you only have to pay to feed yourself while you do the work. You escape having to pay overtime if these are aspects of your AG building you opt to tackle after hours.
Even if the only thing you can do is help with the delivery of materials, it’s still quantifiable savings. DIY-ing part of the building overnight is also a way to make the building productive sooner than usual.
Everyone needs a team to help them put up steel AG buildings, but teams come with their own sets of liabilities. Time theft is one of the most significant ways slow-walking a project can become massively expensive. Workers and supervisors can also act carelessly, leading to damaged materials or injuries.
Being present and keeping a close eye on your building project helps you detect and squash sneaky expenses. Micromanagement limits your vulnerability to laziness and deliberate dishonesty. Not everyone likes hearing that they should lean towards micromanagement, but ask yourself if your temporary reputation with the building crew is worth a shoddy building.
Set Your AG Building Up the Right Way
Agricultural buildings are vital to all sorts of farming operations, from metal shop buildings to metal storage buildings. The standard AG building is made from steel to maximize durability and minimize costs. However, an AG building project can still run over budget if you’re not careful.
That’s why planning well, considering all your options, and being active on the building site is essential. Keeping your finger on the pulse of your building’s construction is the key to staying within your budget. For more budgeting advice, check out the rest of our lifestyle blog today.